2003 Volkswagen Jetta Wagon Review | Edmunds.com

2003 Volkswagen Jetta Wagon

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Volkswagen Jetta Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 1.9 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 90 hp @ 3750 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 35/45 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2003 Volkswagen Jetta

  • The Jetta is no longer priced like an economy car; yet, its powerful engine lineup, near-ideal balance between ride and handling and premium cabin materials make it one of our top recommendations to small car buyers.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Powerful 1.8T and VR6 engines, fuel-efficient TDI powerplant, fun to drive, comfortable ride, rich interior materials, loads of standard features, solid build quality.

  • Cons

    More expensive than most small sedans and wagons, tight rear-seat legroom.

  • What's New for 2003

    Volkswagen eliminates the GLX trim level for wagons -- this means that those who prefer the VR6 engine to the 1.8T engine will have to stick with the sedan. As a consolation, GLS wagons equipped with the 1.8T are eligible for a premium package, which bundles traditional GLX content like power seats, automatic climate control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, rain-sensing wipers, wood interior trim and a trip computer. Additionally, VW has made the 1.8T available on both the GL sedan and wagon. GLs now have power windows and mirrors, cruise control and a CD player, while the GLS gets a standard sunroof and alloy wheels. All Jettas are available with stability control (ESP), heated seats and the Monsoon sound system. Other changes include a ULEV rating for the 2.0-liter four-cylinder, redesigned cupholders and backlit buttons on the standard stereo head unit.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (58 total reviews)


2002 jetta 1.8t

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Volkswagen Jetta

If it makes you feel better I have a wagon. This car would be a great car if all the parts could be shipped next day from Germany. Good luck with your transmission. You can start thinking about replacing it at 60,000 miles. The tiptronic switch is easy to replace if you're a mechanical geek but if not it will cost you around $500.00 to fix. This is not the kind car you buy parts from your local part store. Be ready to get dirty and learn how your car works or pay a hefty price at the shop and I'm just talking about your regular maintenance. If you can afford the upkeep of an Audi then go for it because that's what you're buying anyway.



3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Transmission problems

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Volkswagen Jetta

I came to the Jetta Wagon from a Civic and it is I came to the Jetta Wagon from a Civic and I have to say that it is a much better car. The cargo capacity is incredible, especially considering its compact size. However, like many European cars, it suffers from electronic gremlins (most of the issues, solved under warranty). More worrying was extensive cylinder work at around 50k miles and a rebuilt transmission at 70k, the latter, according to internet forums being a common issue. Despite its practicality, its comfort and attractive design, I would not recommend that you buy a second-hand one. I am trying to get a couple of years more of mine and will move on to a different brand.




Never again vw!

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Volkswagen Jetta

I really anticipated this being a car I could drive forever (at least to 150,000). Volkswagen has lost a customer. This car was a lemon. A nightmare. Last year I spent 3500 just keeping it running. All the problems everyone else reports are true! Small random pieces falling off everywhere. Cheap interior fabric ripping on, replace ac at only 75,00, break problems, tire wear issues, Burns oil like crazy, failure to shift properly, transmission issues, lots of noises. At 95,000 miles it started blacking out while I was driving, a terrifying experience. Had to cut my losses and let it go. All the while having these problems, the mechanic laughs and acts like I am crazy. Do not buy a VW!




Fun but troublesome

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Volkswagen Jetta

I fell in love with this car at first sight. It was fast, comfortable, fun, and the wagon offers generous space. The VR6 combined with the 5-speed provided lots of good times. Then came the problems. Little by little, this car started having electrical issues. O2 sensor, plug wires, ECU, random blinking lights, check engine light for no reason, and more. The "Comfort Module" also went out, causing the moonroof, door locks/alarm, horn, and interior lights to stop working. The final straw, yesterday I found out the timing chain had basically destroyed the engine. The service guy at the dealer told that my only option was to "get rid of it". Even he acknowledged that these cars are junk.




Still a good car

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Volkswagen Jetta

I have owned my Jetta Wagon for 8 years now and have 115k miles on it. This has been a good car. I tend to drive cars into the ground and have completed this mission with several Toyotas... so I know good cars. I have had a few problems with the plastic handles on the glove box and arm rest. They have been replaced. The door seal tends to freeze the door shut when left over night in very cold weather. Other than these small problems this has been a carefree car. I know two other people that own this same wagon and they have had the same luck with their cars that I have with mine. Consumer Reports did a very poor job of reviewing this car. I would recommend this car.




I should have listened to

by on
Vehicle: 2002 Volkswagen Jetta

I got this car thinking I would give VW a chance in hopes that they had come a long way. I knew that VW/Audi didn't have the best consumer reports for reliability, but I felt if I found one that was care for w/ low miles, I would be fine. I was wrong. In the short time I have had it, I had to replace the ignition coils, a hose, the emobilizer shut my car down from moving (when all I had was a dead battery), and now finally, the timing belt just skipped a notch and blew the head and bent valves!! You wanna know how much the repairs are? Oh about $3000-4000. That is no joke. I am so mad I ever got this car. I warn you now, don't make the mistake I did. email if you have more questions.



Full 2003 Volkswagen Jetta Review

What's New for 2003

Volkswagen eliminates the GLX trim level for wagons -- this means that those who prefer the VR6 engine to the 1.8T engine will have to stick with the sedan. As a consolation, GLS wagons equipped with the 1.8T are eligible for a premium package, which bundles traditional GLX content like power seats, automatic climate control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, rain-sensing wipers, wood interior trim and a trip computer. Additionally, VW has made the 1.8T available on both the GL sedan and wagon. GLs now have power windows and mirrors, cruise control and a CD player, while the GLS gets a standard sunroof and alloy wheels. All Jettas are available with stability control (ESP), heated seats and the Monsoon sound system. Other changes include a ULEV rating for the 2.0-liter four-cylinder, redesigned cupholders and backlit buttons on the standard stereo head unit.

Talk About The 2003 Jetta

Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 35
  • cty
/
  • 45
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs