2010 Volkswagen GTI Long-Term Road Test

2010 Volkswagen GTI: 20K Service- From Sweaty Sock to Baby Powder

February 07, 2011

GTI Service.jpg I took our Volkswagen GTI in for its 20,000 mile service on Friday. The 20K service includes an oil change, tire rotation, a cabin filter if needed and various other inspections. I also used this opportunity to address all the lingering issues our editors had pointed out in previous blog posts -- the air-conditioner odor described as "sweaty sock," a broken cargo cover strap and a mysterious "ticking" noise from the B-pillar.

When I brought the car in, our service advisor noticed that there was a recall (YW/97T2) that required a software update and addressed an issue with the body control module. On a VW forum, some GTI owners have noticed that their fuel economy has gone up since this update was performed on their cars. Time will tell if we get this benefit as well.

The A/C odor was a quick fix. Technicians replaced the cabin filters and cleaned the system, just to be safe. The cleaning chemicals they used must've had a baby powder scent, because that's what the car smells like now.

The broken cargo strap required a part that was not in stock. We will have to bring the car back in a few days to get the part installed.

As for the ticking noise, I heard it on the way in, but the technicians were not able to duplicate the noise. They checked the clips and panels in the B-pillar area, but did not find anything loose or broken. They even compared it to other GTIs on the lot and still didn't hear the noise in ours. Strangely enough, when I got the car back, I couldn't hear the noise either. So either it fixed itself when the mechanic poked around, or we all imagined it.

The dealership had the car washed and ready at the end of the business day. The total cost for the 20,000-mile service was zero, since it was covered by VW's "carefree maintenance" program. The other items were covered under the car's warranty.

Ron Montoya, Consumer Advice Associate @ 20,440 miles.

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The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2010 Volkswagen GTI in VA is:

$141 per month*
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