1996 Volkswagen Passat - Consumer Reviews

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Average Consumer Rating 68 Total Reviews
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best engine and tranny combo
By 60buick on 08/18/13 19:04 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat TDi 4dr Sedan

Review

I love my passat, I bought mine with 127K miles and it has 291K now. It's roomy, comfortable, and a pleasure to drive. Has good all around visibility. True the door handles are a pain and the window regulators go, but the car has never let me down and I get about 43 mpg average. It's paying for itself. Important to find a good diesel vw mechanic as most shops haven't a clue. My goal was to keep it until 300K, but I'm going as far as I don't have to do any major engine work. It's going to be a sad day when I retire this baby
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Very Reliable
By legionpk on 01/15/13 18:06 PM (PST)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX V6 4dr Sedan

Review

this car is very reliable. the power of germany engineering. i love my 96 vw passat glx. it takes me any where. proud owner. i will keep it and drive it till it disintergrates or the tires fly off or the doors fly off
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LOVE IT!
By cacree on 09/04/11 20:07 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat TDi 4dr Sedan

Review

I bought my car from my brother in South Dakota for $100. It had been abused, and ran without oil, so my dad and I had to completely rebuild it. After finally finishing this job, I know all about my car, and I love it. Even with it's peely paint. Best first car ever. I plan to keep it, and fix all my own problems for the rest of my life. :) Thank you Volkswagen! I love you!
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Dependable work-horse
By ca_cowgirl on 06/19/11 09:37 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat TDi 4dr Sedan

Review

I purchased my '96 TDI used with 125k miles, and it has turned out to be one of the most dependable cars I've ever owned. It now has 273k miles on the original engine. I'm quite impressed for a diesel, it's much quieter than Mercedes, does not smoke, burn oil, and it consistently gets 42-48MPG. I drove from Sacramento to Kennewick Washington on ONE TANK of diesel. Over the years, the car has began to "age", and as such, the door handles are faulty and cease up, the cup holders broke off, lid to glove box broke, and AC switch broke one really hot summer day. Other than that, this is a very comfortable driving, easy handling automobile that I will drive until the doors fall off.
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2 of 2 people found this review helpful
GLX Passat Wagon
By Meghan M. on 10/13/10 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX V6 4dr Wagon

Review

I am quite familiar with a lot of the issues I have been reading. One thing I have noticed with this car is that proper maintenance and proper fluids such as G12 coolant, premium gasoline, and synthetic oil are necessary for longevity. I have rebuilt the engine and replaced all of the gaskets, timing chain and tensioner, water pump, and cv shaft. I am approaching about 160k miles and I am still in love! Though, my boyfriend and I are VW enthusiasts and do many of the repairs ourselves and it is definitely important to find a VW mechanic and NOT a dealership. I will say, if someone is looking into this car, be prepared for a good amount of maintenance.
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2 of 2 people found this review helpful
680,000 and still running
By VW on the BRAIN on 05/31/09 17:40 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat TDi 4dr Wagon

Review

I have been a VW fan since 65". This was my third VW, and my first wagon. I loved it, and still do, its had a few problems, door handles, wheel bearings, gears, speedometer, window motors, rust, spindles, locks, and Volkswagen scalloping back wheel wear. These w's, you either love em or hate them. This vehicle needs better headlamps, the plastic interior was shoddy, half of it busted. The cup holder snapped off, the glove box, broke, little thing like that can piss you off. The seat rails screwed up. The heated seats, were replaced but, the seats were never the same. The odometer went at 181 k, and it was 1200 bucks to fix. This car is fun to drive but you must have patience.
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1 of 3 people found this review helpful
No more VWs
By tyler on 09/06/08 11:01 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX V6 4dr Sedan

Review

As almost all reviews have implied this car is too expensive to service and problems are constant. VW should have recalled the entire car. Yes, great V6 engine but definitely a real headache and expensive to repair.
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Great VW
By Germancarfan on 01/29/07 16:46 PM (PST)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX V6 4dr Sedan

Review

I received this car in my grandmother's will, and as she meticulously maintained it and kept it in excellent shape. I see no major problems in the car. It drives nicely, accelerates quickly, and handles like a car half its size. My only gripe is the door handle, it seems to act up every once and a while, leaving me fiddling with it for a bit to get it to work. As this is my second car, my first car was an Isuzu Rodeo, I am very pleased with it.
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Horrible, Expensive, and Unreliable!
By Rupert on 12/22/06 06:14 AM (PST)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX V6 4dr Sedan

Review

This car has been a complete nightmare to own. It has had issues with the transmission, electrical, interior cosmetics, expensive parts...the list goes on. This car was wonderful when I bought it new in April of 1995. Then at 31,000 miles all hell broke lose. I lost my heated seats, and soon after my entire instrument cluster. Then at 33,000 miles my transmission went out - thank God it was under warranty as it costs nearly $6,500 to repair. The rear O2 sensors require taking off the FUEL TANK to reach them. This car is too much work and is costing me too much money. I am VERY unhappy with this car!
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Terrible Car!
By Mika on 12/22/06 06:03 AM (PST)

Vehicle

1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX V6 4dr Wagon

Review

This is my second Volkswagen Passat. My first one was a '91 Passat which I loved. I decided to upgrade for the VR6. With 176 horsepower on tap on a much heavier car it wasn't going to win any races. This car has been a dismal experience, as the O2 sensors (in engine bay and under the fuel tank) have gone out, as well as the thermostat and automatic transmission. After thousands of dollars in repairs and countless man hours of doing the work myself, I have finally gotten rid of the beast.
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