Purchased car in 2004 with 37,500 original miles on it. From a private owner in Montauk NY. Transported via car Dolly to my winter home in fl where its garage stored when not using. At 59,00 miles on it, had to replace 4 tires not due to improper wear but dry rot from sitting. The VW now has 76,00 miles with no other repairs except a battery and oil changes every 3,000 miles. When traveling on the open road using Cruise control average 40 mph per and Burns no oil. This is the best used car I have ever owned.
I love this car. He's got a name and has never let me down. That being said, you should know how to work on these cars before you get one, or at the very least have a really good friend that knows how to. Both my dad and my brother know a ton about these cars, so I'm in luck. We've never had any huge repairs with this car, but a whole bunch of little ones. I would say ~$800 a year in parts. Pros: Great handling for an older car. Great mpg, and fairly reliable. Very responsive. Cons: Front seats are a little uncomfy, and the car can get cramped, but nothing extreme. Almost 30,000 miles in 3 years and we've never had to replace the clutch or any of that. Seriously, a fantastic car.
The car really surprised me. My father had bought it in early 2006, right before i graduated high school. I thought it was a crappy compact till i got a chance to drive it. It was a blast, surprising speed for a little car like that but probably wouldn't have been as fun if it was an automatic. It handled decently, it even got me out of a few close calls while speeding on the highway but no cup holders and tight interior made her a little uncomfortable but surprisingly enough it had power windows.
I bought my Cabriolet in 2006 in semi-decent shape. I did some work to the car to get it decent and the experience with the car has been wonderful. Didn't take too much to fix it up and VWs are usually pretty easy to work on. The car is very reliable as are most from the early 1990s. Many are still on the road, which proves their durability, really. The body will rust off before you'll have problems though, if you live in the north where there is salt. Do the routine maintenance and this car will last you a long time. It is a blast to drive, especially with the top down! Handles like a VW should. 1.8 engine isn't awesome for power, but it's decent and reliable. I get 35 mpg+.