I bought my 2004 Passat GL in 2011 with 91k mi. on it for $7900. In just 3 years I've spent over $3600 on it not including regular maintenance. Oil sludge, both front axle boots torn, both brake rotors, leaking coolant, new thermostat housing and new thermostat, and many, many other problems!! Currently at 130k miles the timing belt broke. Could cost me $900-$3000+ to fix depending on the damage done to the engine. It's current value wasn't even worth it to fix. I sincerely advise EVERYONE to stay away from this vehicle!!! I personally will NEVER buy a Volkswagen again!! Don't make the mistake I did... DO YOUR RESEARCH!!!
Reading review after negative review I wonder whether I was just lucky, or whether my experience is more representative of the norm.
My Passat was totalled last summer when a tree blown over by a storm crushed my garage (of course the Passat was in the garage).
95,000 miles with only 2 service matters.
Fuel pump failed at 88,000. Parts and labor < $300.
Replaced one CV boot at same time as a precaution. Parts and Labor also about $300.
Outstanding performance and handling. Understated but elegant interior. Good ergonomics.
Seats were firm but wonderful for long trips.
5 speed stick combined with rev range and torque band.
Consistent 31-32 mpg cross-country at 75 + mph.
Confident handling extended well past 100 mph.
Excluding 0 - 60 times, there might have been an outer 10% highway performance envelope of what a 3 series could do that the Passat couldn't match, but that was outside of anything I would have the stones to do, anyway. Thank the stars there weren't any police around during some of the back road cross-country flights I made in my Passat.
I love my 04 VW Passat! It is by far the best purchase I have ever made (great price for an AWESOME car). Bought it at 58,000 miles and it is flawless. The turbo is wonderful; and even though I have a basic model it has great features like the bump shifter, seat warmers, cruise control, great sounding stereo, high quality interior and more! It's German engineering at it's finest! You can feel the quality everytime you drive it. It is NOT a cheaply made Honda or Toyota. I recommend a Passat!
Bump Shifter, Turbo capabilities, seat warmers, smooth ride, quiet - no road noise, and everything!
Purchased the vehicle brand new in 2/04.
Followed the recomended mantenance religiouly. In the years I've owned the vehicle I was left stranded 4 times and needed to be towed to a garrage.
Tow #1 60K miles. Water pump (make of PLASTIC) failed causing the engine to overheat.
Tow #2 75K miles. Fuel Pump failure.
Tow #3 100K miles. car would not start. Brand new spark plugs were dirty and needed to be cleaned.
Simple issue is a major problem when stranded.
Tow #4 120K miles. water pump (Aagain!) after inspection, we needed, new water pump, timing belt, tensioners, cam seal, aux fan, main fan bearing, new belts, to the tune of 2K from a reputable 3rd party VW mechanic.
Never Again VW!
Exterior and paint still look brand new after almost 9 years.
Car floats like a cloud when on the highway.
Ride quality is comparible to a luxury vehicle or at least something upscale like Acura or Infinity.
Solid factory sound system and great attention to detail on the interior.
Prior to owning my VW, I had a 1997 Civic that I drove for 175K miles with zero issues.
Better headlight lenses.
They fog up like no other vehicle I've seen on the road.
Better engine compartment design. I have to remove parts of the engine to change the airfilter.
Every other car on planet earth has the airbox front and center so any novice can replace it.
I cannot understand how VW can have any sort of customer loyalty when your read the counless horror stories of things that go wrong with their cars and the massive amount of money to fix them.
2004 Volkswagen Passat GLX Fwd 4dr Sedan (2.8L 6cyl 5A)
i hate a car in front of me which caused other 2 cars ahead to be involved in the accident. the damage was severe as the whole front of the car was crashed including the engine and the passenger was fatally injured, he had a shoulder dislocation. what surprised me are the airbags, they never deployed even though i was driving 60 mph. after few days volkswagen of America sent an engineer to inspect the car. After he left i noticed the seatbelts are loose and the bottom cover is opened, it seems like he did it in purpose. before he came the seat belts were fine. what most surprised me is his decision that the airbags can't deployed in this case. iIshowed him the bottom of the car where is the chassis, it was bent from the direct impact of the forces that came through the bumper which also cause the front beam to twist, but never gave me a satisfied explanation. People who try to buy this car and have kids please be aware of this safety issue, my family was blessed to get out of this accident just with a shoulder dislocation, which could be worst.
My next step is lawsuit against VW.