Pros: "Excellent fuel mileage and has held up very well!"
Cons: "Suspension is mediocre at best."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I've owned this car since new. Other than normal maintenance it has never needed any unnecessary repairs. Never left me stranded or hating the car. That said the suspension leaves much to be desired. I don't know what VW was thinking because it is borderline terrible. Quick turns are sluggish with a lot of body roll. The engine is awesome and I've never had less that 40mpg average. Highway driving will easily give you over 50mpg. Can't beat that! Fit and finish have been great and the car doesn't really show its age at all. Hate that I'm going to have to sell for something with more room."
"this is my wifes car and after driving it a few time im in love with the car.(i love trucks only) this car broke my hate for FWD cars. i love to drive it. the only bad thing i can think of is its under powerd. but the trans shifts very very well making it so u never have to really step on the gas hard. get really great gas milage and the VW servis center is great compaired to any other i have been to.
i gave 5 stars on every thing but performance,it got 4. but this is a all around 5 star car."
"I bought my 2001 VW Golf TDI new near the end of 2000. At the time I was commuting 150 miles a day for work and the mileage of the diesel was the reason I settled for this car. It now has 218,000 miles on it and shows no sign of fading. I tend to the minor maintenance myself, things like oil changes, brake replacement, lights, etc. The diesel engine has always started for me. It seems to struggle to stay running when the temperatures are below -10 degrees or when I park it overnight in the high elevations of Western Colorado. But it has never failed me. Because of it's inherent effeciency, the diesel engine doesn't warm up quickly, in fact it has electric heaters to warm up the engine coolant when it's cold.
This car drives well, rides well and handles well. It's not for the races but has ample power for most situations. But what sets this car apart from all others,including Toyota Prius's is it's fuel economy. My normal driving habits result in fuel mileage of 50 to 52 MPG on the newer ultra low sulphur diesel fuel. When I burn B99 bio-diesel it gets slighly less, maybe 49 MPG. My best tank of fuel at 774 miles was 57.6 MPG but that was in the days of low sulphur diesel fuel. Driving between Denver and Knoxville I fill up once in western Missouri.
Overall, I like this car but I probably won't try to keep it beyond 350,000 miles unless it's running really strong. I highly recommend this car to people like me who are DIY'ers and don't like spending limited resources on fuel."
"Bought my VW Golf 2000 6 years ago with about 38k miles, car has over 140k miles now. Never broke down and left me on the side of the road. Fun to drive in town, but not real comfortable for long trips. Although I drive it from Phoenix to Vegas regularly. Unless you can afford a BMW or Benz, still with a VW. Better than an Audi and a lot less expensive to repair."
"I've never gotten less than 42mpg in my Golf TDI...and that's in town! I've owned it for 3yrs now, and so far, so good on the electricals and integrity, but I've heard some horrow stories. I only have 17,000 miles on it, so we'll see.
The performance leaves a bit to be desired, but with the max torque being produced at 1800rpm, downshifting is never a necessity. I can cruise around at 35mph in 5th gear with no problems.
It's a small car and although roomy for a small hatchback, the backseat is almost useless for people. If you have kids, only 1 seat will realistically fit in the back (in the middle) and it's a pain to get them in/out. We always use my wife's minivan to go anywhere, even though it gets less than half the mileage.
Overall, a satisfying car with unbeatable gas mileage. I hope my good luck with reliablility continues. If not, the resale value (due to gas prices I assume) is almost what I paid for it!"