I've got 145,000 miles on the car and have had to spend a fair amount of money on service. I've replaced the glow plugs and had the intake manifold cleaned when it plugged with carbon. I've also replaced the airflow sensor twice. So it hasn't been trouble-free, but it's within acceptable limits. The cost of ownership is about what you would have with a trouble free car getting about 35 mpg, but I'd still buy it again. I love the way it drives and the torque of the TDI engine. It sure doesn't drive like a 44-49 mpg car! It pulls like a big V6 up to about 3,000 rpm. It is great for a sole commuter or a traveling couple.
The ride, handling, good fuel economy - nearly 600 miles on a tank of fuel, and surprisingly enough, it goes great in the snow when it's got good tires. This is the best cold starting diesel I've ever owned.
It should use a less expensive timing belt. Move the drink holders from above the radio and heater controls. The cramped back seat is really only good for children.