Pros: "MPG, reliability, fun to drive manual tranny"
Cons: "Small cupholders."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"After 215,000 miles, this car still consistently gets 35 mpg on highway. I bought it new in 1995. The only major work it needed was a new A/C compressor at about 198K miles. Otherwise, only routine stuff. It's got THE MOST comfortable seats I've ever sat in (though I wish at times for heated seats....) and I could ride for hours in them. Excellent set of foglights."
"This was the best purchase I have ever made. I bought this one used with 135,000 miles on it for $2,700. I got 7 years out of this car. It has 187,000 miles on it and runs as well as it did on the day in which it was purchased. A DUI crashed into it while I was at work a few weeks ago...The insurance decided to scrap the car. They said the repairs would cost more than just giving me money. There going to give me $1,750. This car is so awesome. I only filled up my tank once in a blue moon and it never broke down on me. Most of the repair work is easy to do yourself and the 5 speed has some pretty fun pick up. I am going to miss this car soooo much!!! I'm probably going to have to get another one. I might even get the same year b/c the mileage isn't as good on the newer ones. GET THIS CAR! The seats even fold down and it turns into a couch so you can watch movies at the drive-in when the hatch is up!!! So many good memories with this car! It's also incredible for city driving...I could fit into every spot that was passed up."
"This has been a very trustworthy, sporty, fun car. I have never experienced any major problems in the 13 years I have owned it. I have taken excellent care of it though. I call it my "little champ" because it's been so good to me. I get amazing gas mileage, still to this day."
"This car is so much fun to drive, the VR6 pulls really hard for just a stock 6 cylinder. The inside is very spacious, I put 4 people, 4 bmx bikes, and luggage and took a 12 hour drive to canada, and never once did anyone complain about feeling cramped. It gets awesome gas mileage for what it has for a motor. It handles better than any other car I've driven.
My only complaint, I wish VW made the mk3's like they did the mk2's, as soon as they hit salt, they just rust. But, it's always in the same place, and if you just take some precautionary measures, such as spray the underside of the floors with truck bed liner, good bye rotted floor boards, and wash the thing a couple times a month in the winter, as you should with any car, and no more rear hatch rust."
"27mpg city, 30 mpg highway
fun to drive, handles great, very reliable. Always started, I followed service manual and had a tune up every 30K
my only issues are a few "quality" issues. Coolant flange on the head cracked twice in 5 years (plastic). Tilt adjust wheel on the seat cracked(plastic) clam shell cover behind steering wheel broke(plastic), manual window adjustment knob broke off in the door (plastic) a lot of junky plastic on this car!"
"I am the original owner of this vehicle and can't tell you how great the past 15 years have been. It's awesome in the snow, great for city driving as well as out of the city. I've hit gas mileage of up to 34mpg (and recently too). If it didn't live with me in the northeast, it could've gone on forever. Rust will be its demise as was my father's '74 bug after 20 years. We can't all be lucky enough to have a garage for the entire lifespan of the car. Highly recommend the mid-90's golfs!!!"
"The ole VW has 250,000 miles on it and is still going strong. No rust, the seats and interior are good and it drives like new. True I have had to periodically replace parts but its a keeper. We never add oil, when its down a quart we change it with Mobil 1 high mileage and we get 7000 miles between changes. !!! Its still our road trip car and gets 33mpg highway."
"I bought this car used from an ex-girlfriend. I hate it from a sytle point but it is one heck of a vehicle. The aluminum roof rack is very strong; I've stacked multiple ladders on top of it with no worries at all. The rear seats fold down in a snap and open up a very large cargo space. It gets good gas mileage for its period. It's never failed to get me where I need to go; just minor stuff to keep her going. I just replaced all of the plugs, filters, and O2 sensors and the brakes were overhauled last year, and she has years of service left in her. The interior is in great shape due to the durability of the materials VW built it with. The 2.0 liter engine is not strong but this is not a sports car anyway; it is certainly adequate. The moonroof is a great feature. About my only complaint is a lot of road and air flow noise at highway speeds, but that is expected on such an economy car of this period."
"i'm still in love with my '96 GTi, even with 190,000 miles, some rust, and a slowly failing transmission. she starts up every morning and easily gobbles the 90 miles one way into and from work, all while doing 27mpg. i wish she wasn't automatic, but luckily, she is still holding up, and i hope that she will continue to do so.
known affectionately as "the li'l blue bucket," i've put half the miles this car has on her in only 31 months. in that 100k miles, i have sunk $750 into repairs, INCLUDING maintenance.
someday i will upgrade, but it will be another, lower-mileage gti...just like this one."