"A great car to drive, but unless you are prepared to fix some things yourself, it could get expensive. The AC system is a reliability nighmare. I have replaced almost every component at least once. The evaporator has failed twice, which involves removing the entire dash to replace. Virtually no one will do this except the dealer. Last time I checked , they wanted over $1800. The ABS controller is notorious for failing. Yes the brakes will still work, but.. dealer wants almost $1000 just for the part, plus the labor to install. Mine has failed TWICE. The Heater Core blew out after 11 years, maybe that is to be expected. The ENTIRE dash needs to be removed in order to replace... count on $1500+ to fix. The engine has been very reliable, no problems after 11 years and 100K miles... just spark plugs and oil changes. Valve cover gasket is due for replacement. Coolant hoses will need to be replaced about every 5 years and they are not cheap, aftermarket silicon hoses are a better choice. The hoses at the back of the engine go first as they are over the exhaust pipes. Exhaust system is still solid, and I am still on the original clutch. Outer CV joints and front wheel bearings needed replacing at 10 years, but that is to be expected. Door moldings have a tendency to fall off, but aftermarket adhesive fixes that. Interior trim (mine is leather) has lasted extremely well, even with dogs riding in the car. I love the car, its styling and performance, but unless you are handy at car repair and finding parts at the junk yard or online, paying for the dealer to fix some things will cost you."
"Bought the car new in '96. The best thing I can say about the car is that it runs well after 264,000 miles. It still gets 30+ mpg regardless of how I drive it.
The electronic gadgets started dying off around 150K miles. No more cruise control, automatic cabin lights when the door is opened, or alarms when the lights are left on. However, the A/C still works and the heater can still roast me out of the car if set to high. With that many miles, most of the broken items are not worth fixing.
I've replaced the starter, fixed a couple water leaks, and performed general maintenance. That's about it. Nothing major has ever gone wrong... hope I didn't just jink it."
"Ive only had this car for 3 months and i will never go to another car. Bought it for 1200 and its been reliable ever since. yeah i had to do some maintenance but it has 197,000 miles. changed oil cooler gasket, struts, and all filters."
"I bought this Jetta new in 1999 right off the truck. (This is a 99A model, based on the 98 body style).
I loved this car for a couple of years. Then the power windows started to have problems. At first it was only the driver's window, but slowly over time it was impossible to raise or lower any of the windows consistently. In the end I quit driving this car because I couldn't guarantee that the windows would stay up while parked.
I have taken this car to the dealer three times for repair, but the repair never lasted. Apparently many Jettas have this problem with the windows.
Even in the end, the Jetta handled like a dream. The 2.0L engine 5-speed manual has better pick-up than you might expect, and it is a blast to drive.
My advice: Don't totally dismiss the Jetta, as it could be a great car, but roll down ALL the windows several times before you buy!"
Pros: "super fun to drive, reliable, great mileage & cute"
Cons: "little things breake"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I am the original owner and I love it! It is super reliable. The only down side it that I broke the vent and then the sun roof went out, later the cup holder broke, but as far as being reliable, this car is awesome! Never brakes down. I am reaching 230K and only once I had to change the clutch/transmission. No major jobs needed aside form that. I hate to get rid of it, because it's so confortable and plush inside."