Bought Golf GLS M/T new Jan/2006. Had a great run for the first few years. It handles great, is a lot of fun to drive and looks good.
But, once it was out of warranty, the problems started. At about 44,000 miles/7 yrs., the master cylinder (brakes) needed to be replaced, and rotors. Internal engine oil leak - new transmission needed before 50,000 miles. Hood latch broke 2x. Strange front thumping noise that cannot be diagnosed began in 9th year.
Around year 6 the armrest latch broke. Around year 8 the glove compartment latch broke. And this is from a single driver - hardly ever passengers, no kids - so these things were hardly ever opened.
Loved the car but would not buy again. I traded it in after 9 years and would not buy VW again, as much as I loved the car in the beginning.
I bought my 2005 Golf TDI brand new in February 2005. I love the fuel mileage - average of 46-48 mpg and I don't visit the gas station very often. It is a really fun car to drive with what feels like lots of power due to the torque. It is, however, expensive to maintain and not always easy to find a good local VW mechanic. VW dealer service always seems to be sub par (I have been to 3 different dealers for service). I still would not give up my car because I do love driving it!
Fuel mileage, fit and finish of interior, car feels very solid, quality of materials used (original battery and brakes on my car at 106,000 miles and nearly 9 years - AND it just passed state inspection on 12/6/13). Handles extremely well with quick response, very smooth ride and fairly quiet. LOTS of fun to drive and holds the road extremely well. I feel safe in this car because of it's solid feel and the air bags everywhere.
VW could do a better job at standing behind the quality of their vehicles. I've had to replace the hood latch twice in 8 years - and I've heard others having to replace theirs. The last time the dealer actually broke the latch in November 2013. I contacted VW about this obviously defective part and they refused to acknowledge or do anything about it. Also, the cost of repairs on this vehicle are outrageous and it seems every time I go to the VW dealer they have to keep my car for at least a few days and then charge me at least thousands of dollars (I'm not kidding!) to get it back. They once returned it to me with a damaged hood after it was there for 9 days. Dealer service needs to improve!
The engine is great and mates wonderfully to the DSG The car has plenty of torque and is responsive I am very disappointed with the quality of the materials used Car dealer service is very expensive. http://ontargetreviews.blogspot.com/2010/09/2005-vw-golf-tdi-20-comfortline.html
Engine and gearbox
Build quality is suspect with many things falling apart
...story. I have owned my car for the last four years. My car has been incredible on diesel mileage. I get in the city anywhere from 500 to 550 miles in the city and 550 to 625 miles on a tank. Within the first 3 years of my car, my transmission went! Could not believe it! The dealership had me pay approx $1200 to replace it. I was not happy about it at all. The dealership agreed to refund me half the amount I paid and asked I follow up the rest with Volkswagen International - No outcome from that. In the 4the year, seals and headlight bulbs replaced under warranty. Spill guard is not good for dark clothed interior. Don't replace air filter with after market unit! Dangerous!
The car is zippy! Mine comes with 145hp and 250lbs of torque. Speeds off like an Angel on a mission! Excellent passing. Beautiful, quality interior, great trunk space, Tape deck with trunk cd changer capability. I have a GL version, brand is wonderful. ESC, and seats are comfortable!
Heater is horrid! Need to up the redline to 7000 rpm. Better suspensions to minimize body roll. Keep the tape deck. include CD player, traction control, ESC, and cruise control standard. Make under body coating (noise reduction) standard. Increase horsepower and torque.
I drive about 115 miles round trip to work. All I have ever done is change the oil (about every 12-15k miles), replace a couple head lights, and change the tires. My car has yet to need brakes or any major repair. The perfect stylish, fun to drive, daily commuter!