BUY A DIESEL!!!! They are by far the most reliable cars on the market!! BUY VOLKSWAGEN. They have the best reliability and exceptional integrity of design of any car manufacturer out there (IMHO). Don't be fooled by the recent political ruminations of diesel performance - they are STILL THE BEST ENGINE DESIGNS OUT THERE! BTW I'm a NASA Engineer!!!!!!!!
Dealers of VW are born devils! VW sales representatives are always hard to negotiate. You have to trust me, I have went trough hell to bring price down from sticker price. Otherwise they are nice, I would say above average, well trained ;-) when you are buying. If you have a warranty issue it is a different story. Staff will not cooperate with you. If you really want something done be prepared to spend time on the phone with VW of America, not the local dealer's manager. Also if you are capable, do maintenance yourself or at least learn to check dealer's work!
I have 101K miles on this car w/o any problems. I repeat, nothing has gone wrong with this car!!! Once I broke in the engine, as recommended, and learned how to drive the diesel to hyper-mile, I can get crazy mileage and a great ride. I take long trips just to drive the car. Started out getting 640 miles/tank of fuel. My record is 925 miles/tank, but I was drafting behind a tractor-trailer at 65 mph and 75 mpg. Normal driving to and from DC (400miles) record is 67.4 mpg usually just under 65 mph. It makes the trip more fun to play the mileage game. I am so upset at VW because If I have to turn in my 2.0L Jetta Sport Wagon and my 3.0 L Touareg TDI, I want to replace them with newer versions of the same damned cars. Please fix the engine and sell diesels again. My other cars are BMW 135, 528i SportWagon (wife's car).
I bought this car after owning an Audi TT 3.2 6m/t which I loved but it was getting expensive to maintain and fuel up and I needed a family car. An SUV or cross-over were out of the question because I simply despise them and they drive like bricks on wheels. I was not prepared to spend over $30,000 for a new car and it had to be a daily driver with very good fuel economy. Since I will never buy an American car (GM, Ford or Chrysler) or one with an automatic transmission or CVT, a hybrid was out of the question. I had rented a 2012 Jetta Sportwagen 2.5L during a business trip to Seattle and I remembered liking the spacious interior, massive cargo volume (I had to carry 3 coworkers and their bags) , easy and ergonomical controls and above average handling (despite the fact that I had to rent one with an automatic transmission). My 2014 JSW TDI has gone on a road trip from Florida to Pennsylvania and Maryland in October of 2014. I bought the VW roof rack which I installed myself due to extreme ease of installation. The car performed admirably and road noise, even with a loaded roof rack, was not extreme. When I bought the car, I did a cost benefit analysis of the 2.0 TDI vs. the 2.5L and it did not make sense to lease the TDI over a 36 or 48 month period due to the price of diesel (the premium of the diesel engine would not pay for itself based on fuel economy until the fifth year) in 2014. With the recent plunge of fuel prices, I can pay less than $30 at the pump and drive for 2 weeks before my next fill-up. I regularly get more than 530 miles on a tank (14.5 gallons) of diesel in mixed city/highway driving. Admittedly, I am writing this review after the VW Dieselgate scandal. I did not buy this car because it was touted as a "Clean Diesel"; I bought it simply because the combination of fuel economy, vehicle performance/handling, cargo space, comfort and interior quality/ergonomics is the best I could find under $30,000. I work in an area where dumptrucks and 18 wheelers spew black smoke incessantly. Yes, I am disappointed that my resale value will undoubtedly drop but I am gambling that, with a robust compression ignition engine, I will drive this car until it dies and that will be more than 10 years from now (based on reading reviews on VW TDI forums of other drivers who report very long lives and high mileage on their VW TDI's. The steering is crisp and responsive and there is slight torque steer evident. It is very easy to park the car and the rear view camera is a handy assistant (even though the car is by no means oversized). I have noted a glitch that sometimes I shift into reverse and get a warning on the screen that the camera is unavailable (shifting into neutral and then back into reverse always recovers the camera functionality). The transmission is easy to shift up and down and the clutch is on the lighter side though "catches" relatively deep. This does not bother me even in city driving as I am used to stiffer clutches though I can see how some drivers could be annoyed in repeated bumper-to-bumper traffic. Living in Florida, I am not overly concerned about needing winterized diesel or the inherent difficulty in starting a compression ignition engine in colder temperatures, but it is comforting to know that I have not had any issues with the glow-plugs in the first 2 years. The service intervals call for oil changes every 10,000 miles. Only after buying the car did I realize that it is considered by some to be a "cult" car in the sense that there's a very close-knit community of owners who simply love their JSW's akin to Subaru WRX or Mitsubishi Lancer EVO owners. I do love that you don't see too many JSWs around and I believe I have one of the few JSW TDIs with a manual transmission in Miami (all the ones I have seen have the tiptronic or DSG). A diesel powered station wagon with a manual transmission is a touring car that few people in the U.S. can appreciate more than a CUV or SUV but Europeans certainly understand the wagon's appeal. I am very pleased with this car and would definitely buy a 2017+ Golf Sportwagen TDI whenever VW is able to bring their 4 cylinder diesel engine back to the U.S. market!