With 50+ years of snow country driving, mostly in FWD Saabs, I find the combination of traction and stability control amazing. I'll take it over any SUV - usually out run 'em anyway, especially when the road gets twisty. It can carry an impressive load and get 30 mpg on cruise at 74.5 mph (by GPS) on mid-grade fuel. Clearly, this is car built for the autobahn as well as the Alps. This is my 4th since '97 and nothing has broken yet - equals great value for the money.
I love the overall feel of the car - tight and agile. It has good ergonomics, space utilization and interior lighting. Its excellent seats support well for hours on end. Its small overall foot print and tight turning radius make it a great urban car. I like the crash test results.
The heater takes twice as long to warm up as the one in my '95 Golf. The doors can freeze shut if the car is dripped on. I'd like the fuses in the engine bay where they can be easily changed instead of under the dash. The high beam top cutoff can be pretty hairy when heading into a dip - can't see up the other side.
Love it and hate it. Just name a few problems fixed on my Jetta 2002: - First week of ownership, rear passenger door couldnt open because cable fell down inside the door panel. - One piece radio got replaced three times. - Ignition coils replaced at four times. - Windshield wrapper loosened, ridiculous. - Now the front brake squeaks, I was told that there is no way to fix unless change the whole brake pads, disks, etc, I cant believe that.