I bought my 1997 Volkswagen Passat new in 1997 after having good luck with a 1989 Golf. However, the Passat has been of poor quality and I will never purchase another VW. Problems include the door handles, power windows and front end (tie rods, bearings). I get nervous when the "check engine light" is not on (faulty air pump, does not impact drving). It is a great handling car, it is roomy and I like the VR6 engine with the 5-speed manual transmission. I am at 135,000 miles and the next major repair will force me into a Honda or Toyota dealership.