1999 Volkswagen Cabrio Consumer Review: 99 vw CABRIO GLS, What A Fun C

1999 Volkswagen Cabrio - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

31 Total Reviews

GLS Convertible (2.0L 4-cyl. 5-speed Manual)

3 of 4 people found this review helpful
99 vw CABRIO GLS, What A Fun Car!
By toycollector on


1999 Volkswagen Cabrio GLS 2dr Convertible


I purchased this 99 VW Cabrio used some many years ago.
I wanted a convertible and My Grand mother swore by VW.
Lest we forget, she bought her VW's when Volkswagon was still Volkswagon.

So, as my Cabrio ages, I would be in for some of todays technology short falls or upgrades that the car could/should have done without and be better for it .

I prefer it's look to todays cars, it has a great ride and handles well.
Very enjoyable ride in the summer, and decent traction, for a small car in the winter.
And where do they come up with no power in the reviews.
Mine goes like a bat out of, err a hot oven.
It is pleasing to drive, fantastic when the top is down and the mid support has a good look.
I have now gone through a top change out as the original became brittle and cracked. I installed the
top myself, took a little over a day to do and restored the new top look.
Paint wise, the paint held up very well until the clear coat began to peel off in 2009. But I have yet to see a car
where the clear coat has not failed when the car is in its 2nd decade. It is just irritating to see the clear coat
peel away and then be told the entire car needs to be repainted.
Mechanically at this late date, Jan 26, 2016, the mechanicals of the car are still pretty much in very good shape, runs like a top and gets great mileage.
The downside would be the electric windows motor which can be an off/on working operation. The other would be the less than stellar reliability of the inside door handle which over time will stop working from plastic breakage.
The RADIO is teamed with a cd player and the sound is still booming. VW had a poor design to the radio face and if you try to take it out too many times, will crack the plastic face to a point that it will fall apart. I am on my second radio for that exact reason.
Keeping a car over the 10 year mark for many is unusual and to still have a '99 vw Cabro today in 2017 seems to be a rare thing. The secret to it all is to keep up on any repairs as best you can. If you let it sit, it will deteriorate. For the most part, this Cabrio is still running well and still has great looks with the top still operating to a down position for open air enjoyment.
I drive this car anywhere I care to go with a big smile on my face.

UPDATE: July 26, 2017
Well I still have this fun car. I have installed a new top, dealing with the windows motors that want to work "occasionally" and now I am into the Clear Coat Peel.
All the above are things that generally need replacement, except for the window motors which the internet says had a flaw when they were installed at the factory- what can I say?
... The car is still solid, handles very well and is amongst my most reliable cars.
I had an episode where the after market installed, keyless alarm system locked me out and wouldn't start the car. This started when the battery went dead in the middle of Winter. The dealer had to remove the aft market alarm sys and she came back to life. So this reflects NOTHING on the car itself but watch out for that after market crap. It does not always play well with OEM.
... The only negative I can put on this car is the radio. This car was built in 1999 and the radio had the "security" feature for prevention of your radio being stolen. But if the battery goes dead, you have to in put 4 digits to get it back. If you don't HAVE those 4 numbers, you have to go to the dealer, and they are gonna charge you. Do it once and put the number safely in your glove box for next time. Oh yeah, there's gonna be a next time.
... Though the radio has great sound and if you equip with the CD player, plays back CD's flawlessly, there is a major problem with the radio. It must have been bought by lowest price bid. If you try to remove it from the dash, the plastic pieces break apart, and unfortunately, these peices hold most of the buttons in place as well. This is a well known problem at VW and when they tried to remove my radio, it fell apart. Thankfully, they gave me a radio that was saved from another Cabrio/Golf that was destroyed. It is possible to replace with an aftermarket radio but you'd have to deal with the fit and wiring and the VW cd player will no longer work.
... Also, the hydraulic pump that opens and closes the roof can now have just the impeller replaced for a small amount of $ instead of replacing the entire pump for a lot of $$.
... Ok so that is the history of my VW Cabrio. On the road, she is still quick, smooth, solid and comfortable. The top still works, goes up and down smoothly and is so nice to drive with the top down.
... The Cabrio is a very fun little car to drive, handles very well and it is going to be very difficult to think about getting rid of, when the time comes.
... No long built, there are a few Cabrios available used but I can't vouch for what condition you will find it in but if you find a good one, you'll have some very enjoyable drives. Very nice Car.

Best Features

  • Outward visibility
  • Active safety
  • Headlights
  • Parking aids
  • Climate control
  • Fuel economy

Worst Features

Recommend (3) (1)

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