When I purchased my GTI, I thought it was the best looking hatch inside and out! The fact that it was rated as Motor Trend Car of the Year was an added bonus. After almost a year driving the GTI, I got rid of it in a heartbeat. I've been to the dealer three times for a failing oxygen sensor and two more times for burnt out light bulbs. To top things off, I found out that the GTI is nowhere close to being a performance car. 0- 60 in 6.8 sec COME ON! WHAT A DOG OF A CAR. The fact that it cost almost 30k is even worse. When I actually read the Motor Trend article comparing the GTI to the MS3, WRX, and Rallyart, I found out that the GTI falls behind all three cars in almost every category!
For almost 30k, the GTI needs to be roomier, more powerful (think 260- 270hp) and should have AWD. The reliability was unacceptable and must be improved. The service is mediocre and the maintenance for VWs is way to high (ex.30$ for and oil filter!) I traded the GTI for a 2010 WRX for the same price.