I purchased my VW Jetta and it has been great for a year. I had problems with the dash lights behind the temperature panel. Then it started to have electrical problems. I could not open the gas filler door, then the alarm would not lock the doors, then the trunk light went out and only turns on when it wants. Next the A/C broke. Oh, the glove box is hanging by one hinge. On the positive side, I love the ride and it can do high speeds on the highway. Its gas mileage is great. I would say the quality needs to get better. I bought this car because my Mom owned a '73 Bug and never had a problem. Then I owned it and never had a problem. I mistakenly thought the Jetta would be the same.
The dash lights, great sound system, solid ride, good gas mileage, and great looks.
Use better parts, improve the A/C compressor and the electrical system.
All of the problems listed here I have dealt with too, except for the green stuff in the door. The latest: it thinks it is in reverse when it is in park. It won't start in park (only in neutral). When I have it in drive all the gears light up on the instrument panel. My mechanic called TWO VW dealers and VW claims that they have never heard of such a thing! Mechanically the car is in park, but the computer senses it's in reverse. (I replaced the neutral safety switch because that's what they thought was wrong, but it wasn't that ... $250 down the drain). I will NEVER buy another VW.
The electrical system on my 1999 Volkswagen Jetta is a nightmare. Push the button down and the window goes up. The flashers went out 4 times in 5 years. I also really enjoyed the weird green oily junk that comes out of the doors in warm weather. In cold weather, ice builds up behind the doors to the point it caused a dent when I opened the door. Leaves, pine needles etc. have no problem finding their way into the trunk and door trim. Don't even think about trying to replace the bulb in the tail light, that requires a trip to the dealership.
This was my second Volkswagen. I bought this vehicle as a certified used car with a generous warranty. I have had NO problems with this car. It has never needed any mechanical service besides standard service. It handles great with "H" rated tires. I replaced the factory stereo with an aftermarket CD player, the factory speakers sound great. I get about 33 mpg on highway. this car is fun to drive and the 5 speed is smooth and simple. This car is bullet proof. It has gotten me out of trouble more than once with its awesome handling and braking. Can't say enough good things about this model.
Power everything, handling, long drive comfort, fuel mpg, fun to drive
If you own one of these vehicles you will notice the side trim falls off, I had a body shop use a better adhesive to reattach them, no problems since. No mechanical problems whatsoever
It is not a reliable car. Does not like going up hills, does't like snow, power windows stink-mine would start going up & down independently then caught on fire (no flames but lots of smoke in my car right behind my head), alloy wheels break when you hit a pothole - mine were discontinued so they don't match now, alternater and starter both replaced, antifreeze leaks ($18/gal), got stranded/towed 2 times in the past year, spark plugs and other wires not good, and now the transmission will not shift ... its not a safe car when you pull out of a toll booth on a highway and can't get above 40! I can't even think what else is wrong with the car, I would never buy another one.
The heat and rear defroster work great and they are about the only things that are reliable on the car.
Cup holders that actually hold a drink (mine only hold a 12 ounce can nothing taller fits). A better tape player - mine will automatically turn on and say error, when playing cds or radio. A better battery - with more accessable nodes - jumper cables are very difficult to connect.