"I had two GTIs in Europe before moving to the US (back in the 80s, the old 8 valve, 1781 cc motor) - had a lot of fun with them. Had a WRX before this car - great car, but heavy on gas. I wanted to get better consumption, so bought the Mk V GTI with DSG and the Autobahn package. It has many great points - sweet, powerful engine, better consumption, nice comfortable interior, lots of refinement and style...BUT (you knew there had to be a "but") the traction is AWFUL - the slightest amount of water/snow on the road, or even a moderately brisk takeoff, and the front wheels are spinning like aero propellors. Two things happen - you tend to put the power down very C-A-R-E-F-U-L-L-Y, and the front tires wear quickly, even for a front drive car. It really spoils what would otherwise be a great car."
"Motor Trend's "2008 Car Of The Year". Most fun you can have on 4 (or less) wheels. Unbeleivable control. Not lightning fast but have it pointed in the direction you want before gassing it. I no longer have stoplights. They are now go! lights. Very firm ride with the stiff suspension and low profile/38# pressure tires. Seats are a bit uncomfortable and a little road noise. Small annoyances easily ignored with the power and handling. Pulls strong and feels stable at speeds of 100+.
Love the style and look. Still get compliments from strangers even after 5 years. Would definately buy another when this one wears out in another decade."
"Take your pick from performance driving to highway cruising to in town driving the GTI does it all then begs you for more. I average 32mpg on the highway and 26 in the city. THe car is fast comfortable and loaded with amazing german engineering. No one ever mentions the self leveling HID headlights that illuminate the entire road and never blind oncoming drivers. The standard features are plentifull and the option list well thought out. Give it a look it deserves that much. The entire VW line up is well thought out."
Pros: "Fun to Drive, super fast, great reliability"
Cons: "gas mileage is not what you'd expect"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I'VE OWNED THIS CAR SINCE NEW. HAD SOME MINOR ISSUES IN TEH BEGINNING THAT THE DEALER FIXED UNDER WARRANTY AND ONE BIGGER ISSUE WITH THE FUEL SYSTEM AT 90K MILES THAT AGAIN THE DEALER FIXED UNDER A SERVICE BULLETIN. FOR A CAR WITH 111000 MILES, I HAVE NEVER REPLACED THE FRONT BRAKES, ONLY REPLACED THE REAR BRAKES ONCE AND I DO DRIVE IT PRETTY HARD. I just had all brakes checked at last tire rotation and I am still in great shape with them. I do regular service intervals now myself or with a independent mechanic I have found. I will likely keep it for at least another two to three years"