2003 Volkswagen Jetta - Consumer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Needed at least one review for diesel
By rcplaneman16 on 04/11/14 12:00 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL TDI 4dr Wagon (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 4A)

Review

Looked through some of the reviews and noticed not one for a diesel and everyone main complaint being MPG. Well just wanted to state that the TDI Wagon for my family has reliably gets 35-38 mpg depending how one drives on the highway and has had no major problems for 225k miles. Only things replaced was 2 alternators, original died and its replacement died while under warranty and had to clean the carbon out once so far out of the engine. everything about driving is like the gasoline that everyone has talked about.
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Won't buy another car until this one EXPLODES!
By bradspunky06 on 04/07/14 21:06 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)

Review

I have owned this 2003 VW Jetta, since 2006, bought w/23788 miles. It now has 196483 miles, still on its original clutch, its fifth set of tires. The first set went via burning rubber on launches for the first 20k of my ownership. If any portion of this car has a problem it would be caused by my abuse. I've only replaced the timing belt twice, and its still good as new. Interior is still as new except driver side entrance bolster. The engine has only gotten better and the transmission easier to shift. This car is miles of smiles for the dollar, and should be tops on your list. 31 mpg on long drives, 25-27.3 in town avg. Keep tire pressures all around at 4 lbs under max, for best handling!
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Fun to drive, but MANY quirks
By jfromphilly on 08/30/13 13:15 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

My Jetta got totaled a few weeks back. She was a great car in many ways, (fast, fun to drive, gas efficient) & I got 130,000 miles out of her. However, I decided not to get another Jetta. Here are a few of the reasons: -Anytime there's a repair (and there will be many) you will pay $1000, minimum. -REEKS of crayons. (inevitably the first comment anyone makes setting foot inside the car) -Strange clicking noise coming from the turn signal -Lights turn on and won't turn off again (had to have the mechanic take them apart to get them off) -The electrical outlet/cig lighter stopped working a month in & after multiple repair attempts I had to just give up on it
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146,000+ Miles, Lots of Fun, but Headaches Too
By pjkportland on 07/26/13 10:43 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL 1.8T 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5A)

Review

I have owned my 2003 1.8T 5A GLS wagon since new and now have over 146k miles. It really is fun to drive and has amazing cargo hauling space. But . . . expensive to maintain and gets only about 21 mpg on premium. Make sure you have a good mechanic. Mine is one of the best, and I still have a funky/random issue - a beep, blinking dash lights, then a power drop, as if the tranny disconnected with the engine. As much as I like driving the car, I think I'm going back to Honda when old blue bites the dust.
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1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Constant expensive repairs, but fun to drive when working.
By rocketknight on 07/15/13 09:46 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta Wolfsburg Edition 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)

Review

Fun to drive. Too expensive to own! Breaks often, all unusual problems, always over $1K to repair. Engine design is terrible! Water pump broke at 32K miles/4yrs. 2/3 of transmission needed replaced at 100K from the plastic hydraulics reservoir bursting. Plastic parts throughout engine are designed to last <10 years. An engine fuse didn't burst when shorted causing a small engine fire. Plastic parts break when removing to get to broken parts. Metal fuel lines bolted over plastic coolant parts with no line flex make DIY very difficult. Most parts can only be obtained through dealers. Aftermarket parts cause check engine light to be constantly on, only solution is dealer parts @>2-3x cost. ETC.
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I loved my car, but it was unreliable.
By vdub4lyfe on 03/24/13 17:29 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GLS 1.8T 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5A)

Review

I got a jetta turbo. the timing belt blew, then the tranny went out. i sold it cheap and bought a bug. I loved the jetta. I would buy another one, but i fell in love with the bug. make sure you check the history with any foreign car. especially make sure the timing belt was changed before you bought it and that the oil has been changed regularly. And don't let the VW dealer lie to you and steal your money.
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My All Time Favorite Car - 03 Jetta wagon
By zener on 02/21/13 22:59 PM (PST)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

Review

Of course its looks caught my eye first. Cute, but more than cute - stylish. Some cars have a classic, timeless design like a certain Honda Civic. This generation of Jetta does too. Bought it used with 21K miles, and gradually fell in love with it. Never got great gas mileage, about 21mpg. But I liked its zippy handling. Great car for city driving (and parking). Very useful cargo area. Rear seat a bit cramped for big adults. Engine is remarkable. Once, by necessity, drove it 8 miles without oil. Replaced punctured oil pan, added oil, and kept on going. Difficult to clean the beige interior, so I sold it. Hard to find a car this small on outside, this big on inside, so fun to drive.
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1 of 1 people found this review helpful
So far so good
By vwandsaabfan on 01/15/13 10:40 AM (PST)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)

Review

I recently purchased this car as a practical everyday driver and I am loving it. It is not very powerful, but the 2.0l does well enough. The manual gearbox is wonderful and is very fun. The car handles surprisingly well. I am happy with the fuel economy (average 29.5) and so far have not had any mechanical issues. There are a few squeaks and rattles from various places in the interior, but other than that the car is very clean. It is almost at 100xxx miles and still runs like a champ. The heater is also excellent in this car, which is important as I am from Wisconsin. I have put about 3xxx miles on so far and am very happy with this car.
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7 of 7 people found this review helpful
2003 and STILL kickin'
By oldvolkshome on 08/16/11 14:46 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL 1.8T 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)

Review

I purchased my 2003 1.8T Jetta 5-speed new. Aside from a new water pump at 60k miles (normal) and a faulty coil over arc this car is the best car I have ever owned. It is now 2011 and have 100k miles with original brake pads and original clutch and trans. The car runs beautifully.. It helps A LOT if you drive your car gently and DON'T "over tach" and screech your tires! When it comes to having a good or bad car, it's a 50/50 thing. Just getting lucky and picking a good one combined with how you drive it and maintain it. I highly recommend using synthetic oil. I have used Mobil 1 from day one and my motor doesn't burn a DROP of oil 100k miles later. Love your car & it will love you back!!
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3 of 5 people found this review helpful
This one is a heart breaker...
By jahshwa on 07/15/11 19:46 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen Jetta GL 1.8T 4dr Wagon (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5A)

Review

What can I say? I've poured money into this little beast, and everything is still breaking. If its not a circuit board, its a vacuum hose or an oxygen sensor... Everything just falls apart on this car, and there seems to be no stopping the decline. I just rebuilt the transmission, replaced two axels, two boots, the A/C circuit board, the windshield washer pump, the windshield... you name it I'm replacing it. It drives great, and I loved it for a while... but this thing is high maintenance & annoying. Not worth the fun drive at all... I've already dumped an extra $6000.00 into this car, and that's what its worth now.... :(
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