2008 Volkswagen GTI PZEV Hatchback Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2008 Volkswagen Gti - Consumer Reviews

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2008 GTI Consumer Reviews

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VW GTI Review
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By alekmed
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 2dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 05/08 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

Review Essay The Volkswagen Golf GTI has always been the go-to hot hatchback to buy ever since the first version came out in 1976. It has had numerous competitors but few have been able to match the GTI’s balance between power and handling. The GTI I am reviewing is of the Mk5 generation, with it being a 3 door 2008 model with a DSG transmission, or “paddle shifters.” Overall, this is a good car because it does what it is intended to be in a high manner, which is being the best sports hatchback money can buy. This isn’t a base Toyota Yaris econo box; this car has been given tweaks over the base Golf to make it one of the best sport hatchbacks on the market. First off, the aesthetics


Favorite Features

With it’s small size and excellent handling, this car feels like a go-kart, which is a good thing. As for the ride, this car strikes a balance between enthusiast and daily commuter. It’s definitely more harsh than you’re average sedan, but it’s far from being a headache as you go over bumps in the road. The thin tires on the GTI do did a remarkable job of absorbing major bumps and holes in the road, and overall the car is very quiet, with the only major sound coming from the engine and exhaust when you floor the car. The interior is also above average, with very supportive seats and nice fit and finish along the dashboard. It’s all very well put together, unlike VW’s of the past. There


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Possibly the best sub $30k car you can buy
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By robcarter3
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 4dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 05/08 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

This car is a blast. It puts a huge smile on my face every single time I drive it. The power delivery is smooth and effortless and the engine makes a satisfying growl. The DSG is fantastic. The ride strikes a great compromise between sportiness and comfort. This car does everything. I can drive aggressively and have a fantastic time. I can haul 5 people, or 4 comfortably. I can haul a ton of stuff. I get great gas mileage. The interior of this car is far more refined than any of its competitors. The materials look and feel upscale. It's just a nice place to be. For the money, this car is darn near unbeatable. It is equally good as a daily driver and a weekend toy.


Favorite Features

DSG- smooth automatic when you're stuck in traffic, or pretend to be a race car driver on a good road Engine- great noise, wide powerband, instant results when you put your foot down Plaid seats- they look awesome (the seats themselves are awesome to sit in as well) the steering wheel is a gift from the gods 18" Detroit alloys- they look great Quiet, refined cabin There are no compromises necessary with this car. You can haul people and stuff, safely and economically and comfortably, it's easy to park and reasonable to insure, and it is legitimately fun to drive. I can't think of any other car (certainly not one in the same price range) that does all these things so well.


Suggested Improvements

The GTI needs at least 40 more HP to stay competitive against cars like the Focus ST and Mazdaspeed 3, both of which offer more power for less money. Since this can be accomplished with a simple ECU reflash, I don't see why it would be that hard.


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AWSOME CAR
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By fireball667
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 2dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 05/08 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

This is car is so great even though i have had it a short time i tthe best the car i have ever had and i am really happy with it and i hope to have it for a very long time and i love the accleretion and th ehandeling best VW ever i would and it i a supprised at the gas message i get lately


Suggested Improvements

none


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My faithful Steed
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By meistering
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 2dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 05/08 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

You always see the cowboys with their horses riding off into whatever the next adventure may be. The horse, of course, is more than a horse...of course, of course. It is their faithful steed--a loyal companion. That is what my GTI is--my partner of the road. The car has gone with me from as close as the grocery store, to as far as the other side of the country. It has seen blizzard, rain, sunshine, drought, you name it. My car does everything I would ever ask, and not once has it broken my wallet or told me "no, that's too much." The next adventure is always around the corner, or just less than 6 seconds away.


Favorite Features

The quality feel of the thing. Looks clean and simple. Turbo-4 is great fun when you want it to be, easy and smooth when you just want to relax. Ditto with the DSG tranny. Practicality.


Suggested Improvements

Could use slightly more power. DSG can be clunky at times. The exterior lips and side-skirts are made of this black plastic, looks cheap. (I had them painted to match the car.)


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younger opinion...
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By jotad
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback PZEV 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

its comfortable,quiet,well built and really fun to drive. this car is always in the mood for a sporty time ! even though is a heavy car it handles very good , is extremely comfortable to drive at high speeds, in long trips and daily basis.DSG gearbox is wonderful. i live in a very hot-hummid city(panama) and the air conditioner stops working some times(it seems to be a common problem in this year gti).its a expensive car to own. i haven't had any serious problems, but small things are very expensive to replace. In the end, if you are willing to sacrifice some reliability for comfort, safety and sportiness this car is a very rewarding car to own ,it will make u smile every time you press gas


Favorite Features

Interior quality and features, responsive steering, engine (torque @ low RPM, good power output), fuel consumption, spacious , cargo capacity, descent ride quality, DSG transmission (flawless), sound system , strong brakes


Suggested Improvements

Air conditioner not cool enough, brakes fatigue fast, reliability (high ownership cost)


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Psycho bunny
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By vadersv8
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 2dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 05/08 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

Very fun car to drive, handles almost like a BMW until you realize you only have 200 ponies under the bonnet! Favorits: handeling, seat bolstering, practicality, gas mileage, moonroof, ninja star like factory 18' wheels. Dislikes: Lousy mechatronic issue, stereo is a big joke, low horse power, leather seats aren't plush, light electronic issues such as signal lights. Ugly black back bumper!!!


Favorite Features

Handeling, seat bolstering, practicality, gas mileage, moonroof, ninja star like factory 18' wheels.


Suggested Improvements

Stereo, leather seats, more horse power, color code the back bumper.


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A Fun, Solid, Useful Little Package
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By PASNBYU
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 4dr Hatchback w/Prod. End 05/08 (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

I'm coming up on my 3 yr ann. with my GTI and have only very few / minor complaints (see below) to go with my many miles of spirited driving. Even though torque steer is non-existent, I've decided I just don't like FWD cars - the balance is just not there, especially at turn-in. Luckily for VW (and me!), from what I've read, my wants / needs are all met with the 2012 GTI-R / Golf-R / R20.


Favorite Features

* Love the DSG (but would like the selected gear to be displayed in Sport mode as well as manual). * Seats are always fabulous - as is the rest of the interior. * Smooth, strong, linear brakes. * 1 touch Up/Down on all windows. * Climatic HVAC controls.


Suggested Improvements

* Radio: Change display's blue bkgd; allow steer wheel buttons to seek; allow Sirius song info scrolling; increase speed sens volume levels. * Rethink the fuel filler door release - maybe include w/driver door unlock? * Rethink wiper service position "feature". * Add a grey leather color option.


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Expensive to own!
3 of 72,652 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By pbesong
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

Expensive to own and operate! It takes premium gas only, so while everyone else is paying $2.60 per gallon, you're paying $3.00 a gallon. It takes a special oil, too, which at Pep Boys costs $8.00 per bottle and you'll need 5 bottles. The oil filter from the dealer costs $28, but you can get it from NAPA for a mere $16 (still expensive if you ask me). And you need to change it every 5k miles. It's not a straight-forward oil change either. A bit more complicated. Xenon headlights cost $150 to replace and since the daytime running lights are on all the time, you're sure to burn through quite a few. I'm not keeping mine long enough to find out how many. transmission can have mechatronic unit problem.


Favorite Features

Interior and exterior styling is great. The leather seats are wonderful. I like that the back seats fold down 60/40 with a pass-through in the center. Kicking in the turbo is great for accelerating onto the highway.


Suggested Improvements

Stock tires pretty poor in snow. You'll need real winter tires if you live in snow states, so an extra set of wheels would be in order. Seems to have electric voodoo problems at times. Something like rear wiper or cruise won't work one day, but will work the next day. Hard to diagnose.


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One of the best
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Todd
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6AM)


Review

I have not driven a car that gives you so much for the price. It's fantastic the way the motor and transmission work together. The DSG is the best auto-manual there is. The car feels very refined and stays relatively quiet on the road. The seats are awesome and I love the steering wheel. Loaded with features that are usually offered on luxury cars. Turbo lag is there low in the RPM range, but after driving a couple of weeks it is easy to get used to. The 4-door version has all the room I need. Carries 4 people comfortably, and my kid's car seat fits great. Have had no reliability issues. All around this is one of the best cars money can buy. Could not be happier with my purchase.


Favorite Features

Bi-xenon headlights, seats, steering wheel, motor, DSG, multifunction display, auto door locks, style, ride, handling, blue gauges with red lighting


Suggested Improvements

Gas mileage is so-so, stereo is just okay but good enough, not much interior storage, 25 more horsepower would push this car over the top


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Still happy with my GTI
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Eric
on

Vehicle

2008 Volkswagen GTI Hatchback 2dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)


Review

Leased it two years ago this month. Now has almost 25K on it. The only problem so far was a fuel sending unit which kept indicating car was out of fuel. Dealer fixed it and no further problems. Car drives great, I average 27-28 MPG in a commute that is equal parts highway and city driving. I have owned MANY MANY VWs over the years, and some have been very problematic. Not this one. I plan to buy it at the end of the lease due to its reliability, economy and performance. Once it's mine I will chip it and replace the OEM wheels & tires to improve the performance ever more.


Favorite Features

Heated fabric seats, stereo, interior lighting, steering wheel.


Suggested Improvements

I've never liked those Denver alloy wheels.


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