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!!
I love the timeless appearance of the Jetta (MK4)..
Far superior to it's predecessor or successor!
For a compact car, the MK4 Jetta is a remarkably quiet and smooth ride. The car "tracks" clean and straight.
Excellent fuel economy (30mpg if you're easy on the tach (and the turbo)).
Overall, it's like butter...