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2004 Volkswagen Golf

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Consumer Reviews & Ratings

Overall Rating
7.9
Out of 10

Based on 270 Ratings for the 1999 - 2006 models.

Review this car
more rating details
  • Value
    8.4/10
    Quality
    8.1/10
  • Reliability
    8.3/10
    Performance
    8.4/10
  • Comfort
    8.2/10
    Styling
    8.3/10
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10 Years of Happy Ownership!

By on Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I owned and sold this car
Reason: Upgraded to New Car

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Rock solid reliability, cheap to own, handles well"

Cons: "Slow!, Not really a looker, Very small"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I recently traded this car in simply because I wanted more out of a car. (More power, a little bit of luxury, bigger, more comfortable). After 10 years and 121,000 it just didn't really suit my life style anymore…But, this car served me so well during that time that I feel compelled to give it the recognition it deserves. People can say what they will about VW reliability, and a lot of it may be true regarding the other models, but these little hatchbacks really can't be beat when it comes to practicality, reliability, and utility. This thing never once let me down. I can easily recall every instance of taking it in for non-maintenance repairs. This is easy because it only happened 3 times. The first was in the first week of ownership to replace a part that was causing a knocking sound in the front axel area. Dealer swapped with no fuss. It was a little concerning to have something break that early in ownership, but I was rewarded for not giving up on it. It didn't go back in for a repair until 75,000 miles when the thermal sending unit needed to be replaced for $400. This would've been a lot less had I done it myself or taken it to an independent, but at the time I thought the stealership was the only way to go. Live and learn. The last time was around 95,000 when the O2 sensors went and took out the catalytic converter. Luckily, VW warrantied the Cats for 100,000, so they swapped for free and I replaced the O2 sensors myself for around $200. Other than that, it was just maintenance and wear items. The cost of ownership on this car was just ridiculously low. From a driving standpoint, you aren't likely to have your hair blown back in this car. However, it handles surprisingly well for its class and will be far less boring than most of the Japanese econo-car counterparts. I thought the interior was very classy and simple. Just a great car to knock-around town in, or take cross country…which I did twice. Im sure most people aren't very likely to be considering a Golf this old, but this is more of a testament to the longevity of the Golf line. If you're considering a new one, I say go for it. If you want reliability with a little taste of entry level German engineering, you won't be disappointed."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Great little coupe with lots of interior space

By on Tuesday, November 26, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 66,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Good economy, Good appearance, Great use of space."

Cons: "Hard to reach the seatbelt"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My 05 Golf GL is the automatic w/2.0L engine. It gets 30mpg highway and 20's in town. Very easy to drive, handles well and is quite responsive. The car handles well on snow and ice. The seats pop up out of the way for access to the back and with the back seats folded down it has plenty of room for most duties. I have had no problems since purchased used 2.5 years ago. VW quality assembled in Brazil! Personally I would prefer a bit more ground clearance and increase in height of seating for ease of entry and exit. The oil filter is hard to reach and oil changes are messy. Interior finish is good for a base model and holds up well. Paint is very nice and the tranny shifts great. Do have the tranny flushed around 60K miles and keep up with maintenance (don't forget the timing belt at 90K). A little more expensive to maintain than a Ford or Honda- but a much nicer and better built car is worth the pennies a day."

Be afraid, VERY afraid

By on Friday, October 25, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 120,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
1/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "fun to drive"

Cons: "expensive to keep running. Undependable"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"The car was driven just over 120,000 miles. It was well cared for. ALL REQUIRED SERVICES WERE PERFORMED ON TIME AND BY QUALIFIED, CERTIFIED PERSONS. When driving from Columbia Missouri to St. Louis Missouri the diesel engine "imploded". That was several years ago. We still own the car hoping against hope that VW will come clean and make things right. It still decorates our barn yard, but not for long. The "skinny" from the internet and mechanics I've interviewed - Volkswagen produced a faulty design for their TDI diesel engine used in the Golf for that year (as well as others). After approaching VW via snail mail, email, and in person we just get the "brush off". CONCLUSION: After the poor performance of the vehicle, and the totally rude, and unprofessional attitude of ALL Volkswagen representatives, I highly recommend *AGAINST* buying any Volkswagen products. Period."

5 people out of 12 found this review helpful

Love hate relationship

By on Monday, October 21, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Open windows with key great in hot weather."

Cons: "Overall quality not as expected."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7

"I love some things about this car and hate others. Cons: Passenger door leaks. Radio controls. Constant dampness in car. Cargo area light s/b in hatch. Mileage same as my 1969 Triumph. Adjusting tilt on seats. Valet key useless because has trunk latch in door. Brazil car. Moonroof drains leaked. Stalk controls easily hit by mistake. Key left door only. Very limited passenger space. Pros: Key opens/closes all windows. Rear hatch handle. Hood safety lock. Paint. Dash lights. Headlights. Visor mirrors. Auto windows in front."

One of the best I have owned

By on Saturday, September 28, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 35,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "fuel economy,reliability, comfortable seats"

Cons: "rear seat ok for kids not adults."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Great ride for a small car,good handling & braking. Fuel mileage excellent.Seats are very comfortable even on long trips. Have owned since new, 9 years now & other than scheduled service nothing else needed."

Great car experience

By on Tuesday, September 17, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Great Transmission and reliable car."

Cons: "Interior parts broke. Quality should be better."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Have owned this car for over 12 years. AC still good and no major drivetrain issues. Just tires and brakes in that time. Clutch is perfect, engine and turbo are great. I have never owned a car this long before. It has fairly low mileage but have not owned a car with such few problems."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

A Cheap Car From Germany!

By on Thursday, August 22, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 145,000

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Fun to drive in Fall and Spring!"

Cons: "Expensive to repair and needs lots of it too!!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"Gas mileage for this small car it is only 28 in a good day?! Parts are made of cheap plastics. Inside of car full of cheap plastic. In hot days of summer squeaks and in cold days of winter they rattles, Das Auto!! Unreliable Automatic Transmissions (AT) and EXPENSIVE to fix. if you must Get one make sure to get a 5/6 Speed Manuals. VW manufacturing said and insisted and stated in the manual AT its LIFETIME maintenance free thats A BIG LIE! most AT on VW are falling apart left and right do to problems like: Solenoid(s), AT Oil or clogged Oil filters, TRANSMISSION VALVE BODY and it cost parts only about $800 at the dealers *I call them Stiller's*!! or just quits on you all together do to the chain reactions of one or multiple part failures in the AT!!! We own a 2004 Jetta 5 speeds 2.oL Eng. runs good and a Golf 2.0L Eng. with a AT. we purchased them brand new in 2004 Golf have a bad AT, Jetta still running but costing a lots of money to keep this two VW operational!"

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Little war horse. Best car I've ever owned.

By on Wednesday, June 26, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 100,400

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Safe, never broke down, mpg, affordable maint."

Cons: "I got emotionally attached."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Hands down, I absolutely love this car. That's saying a lot, being that I am a car buff. I bought it used from a certified VW dealer in 2008 with 27k miles. It NEVER broke down. The only thing I needed the warranty for was to replace a wheel barring (~$1k job). The oil is easy to change yourself, as is all other routine maintenance (also affordable at an honest garage). I was in love. It was as fun to drive as a loaded rally car, but not crazy enough to be targeted by police. 4 doors = a must. When the back seats are put down, there's tons of cargo space. Oh, and great speakers. The dash displays are nice too (blue and red color scheme). If you are worried about driving a small car because of safety, I hear you. However, I commuted 60 miles (hwy) in this car a day and it kept me safe. No blind spots, too. Last month, I got rear ended at a stop light by a big Toyota pickup going 50mph. The kid was texting or something. My Golf was pushed into the Volvo in front of me... and it was totaled. I was well enough to get myself out of the car, but did go to the hospital. If i was in a Civic hatchback, it would have been another story. I miss this car terribly and am grateful it kept me safe (perhaps even saved my life). Those Germans know how to design a good frame and crumple zones..."

7 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Fun to Drive

By on Sunday, April 21, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 42,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "fun to drive, handles nice"

Cons: "suspension too soft, quality of the interior"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"The car is fun to drive and handles well. The GL model has a softly sprung suspension and it does not do well over roads with pot holes. The gas mileage is good, I seldom have to fill it up. I had to replace the cooling fan and coolant sensor as well as the front strut mounts and left front wheel bearing. Other than that, I've had no other problems. The cooling fan seems to be a common problem based on other reviews that I've read. The beige interior is hard to keep clean and the fabric is pulling away from the front door panels and the head liner is starting to pull away in the front. The estimate for a new headliner and to re upholster the door panels is $300. The battery fails without warning consistently every 4 years as I am on the third battery."

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

1/2 pint says it all

By on Thursday, February 07, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 72,865

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "great all around"

Cons: "none"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"After driving and loving my 1986 VW Golf 4dr hatchback, manual transmission I decided that it was time for some air conditioning. So I went and found one as close to my 1st love as possible. Finally found one, 2005 VW Golf TDI 4dr hatchback, manual transmission. The only differance was that this one came with a sunroof, power everything and the color. Just as was expected, the mileage was the same. It will cost you just about a "1/2 pint" of gas/diesel to go any where. New, on the highway on a 12 gallon tank, I went 513 miles with the A/C blowing as fast and as cold as it would blow. City on that same tank, I went 445 miles. Very satisfied. After 8 years of driving, still very satisfied. Highway, is about 455 miles and city is 395 miles. I fill up about every 2-3 weeks depending on how much I drive. It now costs me about $43.00 to fill up, as compared to 8 years ago at about $28.00. The worst part about my car is that my interior is tan in color. With 8 years of driving and 2 kids, the interior could use a good steam cleaning. So for all of you who have had poor service from your VW, rest assured that every manufacturer has a "lemon" in the line up. Don't give up yet, there are definately great serving vehicles out there."

4 people out of 4 found this review helpful

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