"Vw makes great cars for the value. much lower cost of ownership say A BMW or MB and much nicer ride then a Honda or Toyota. if you go from owning a Honda or Toyota to a car like a passat or even jetta you will soon love all the extra little features you get as well as much nicer ride quality/ lower noise. Now to the TDI Passat. mileage is amazing. build quality great. expect to replace the front control arms at around 100k as well as timing belt. some cars killed cam shafts due to poor oil quality/lack of oil changes. mine has 180k and all is good, 5k mile+ oil change intervals. I dive across the county I get around 40mpg highway with my auto. some newer hondas and such can get the same but not with anywhere near the comfort level."
Pros: "mpg, fun to drive, rock solid relaibility, strong"
Cons: "Turbo lag when it is hot out side"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I bought this car brand new with leather and alloy wheels with 1.8T auto. $26.5K on road. I keep a detailed record or all gas fill ups and maintenance. For the time since i own it, i average about 24 mpg in the city. Highway is like 29-30.
The biggest expense i ever had was the secondary air pump(emission) related and was $1300 at dealer. Then $800 for timing belt at a local shop and $360 for cv axles. After this i started working on my own and car has been super reliable and never had to work on it that much. It stopped only once because of an aging crank sensor ($75 at dealership and 10 minutes of my time replace). I replace the fluids at proper interval and now a days, once a year oil change is the only maintenance i do(other than free tire rotation at discount tire).
I heard lots of sad stories about this model, but fortunately for me, it was one of the best cars i ever owned. I would not hesitate to take the car for a road trip. Still have the original suspension and cooling system (except the water pump which was replaced with timing belt). Suspension is getting old, but no play or anything so far.
Planning to keep it for another 5 more years (till it reaches 20 years with me) and then donate the car. The engine, transmission, brakes, ac are really strong. Compared to the bmw z3 i have, this is so much better built and parts last so much better."
"I have put 200000 miles on this wagon TDI with only minor repairs - brakes only once, motor mounts once. It keeps going and going and going at 37mpg each tank. It is a wonderful road car, heavy with a really solid ride. Leather seats are not torn at 200000 miles either."
"Car is an 03 Passat GLX V6 fwd 5sp manual sedan.
This car is fun to drive, and has all the great comfort and convenience features in a premium VW. Going from this car, to a comparable Honda Accord of the same model year, you learn to appreciate the VW's build quality, until...
You have to pay for the near continual, costly maintenance. The only way this car could be an ok purchase, would be if you owned a lift, and were quite handy with a wrench, with emphasis on VW/Audi knowledge. The Passat practically requires OEM dealer VW parts, as it will break otherwise. The cost of parts alone is staggering. And it needs parts often.
Do not purchase any VW, and I do mean any... that has anything approaching 90,000 miles or more, no matter what the discounted price. After 100k, the car will continually break down. Avoid the automatic transmission-equipped cars at all cost. Ours is a manual, yet it won't stop us from getting rid of it."
Pros: "this car handles very well, very comfortable"
Cons: "it is 12 years old, after all."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"This car, light green, AWD V6,sunroof - had a new engine installed at about 105,000 miles. It has been used in the country (Nevada City, CA) all it's life; a lot of driving on dirt roads. As far as I know there are no mechanical problems with the car.new tires. What's wrong with it:
It need a new outside temperature sensor
It has a few minor dings and abrasions, nothing serious or requiring body work.
Occasionally the check engine light comes on, but it's off now
The ABS and brake warning light is on now...I am told by a trustworthy mechanic that it's most likely a loose wire, probably near the rear wheels, brakes work fine.
There is some wear and tear on the driver's seat; otherwise the interior is fine, everything works as it should."
"My Passat 2.0 Liter diesel gets over 50mpg at 60 mph. It is very crucial that you buy synthetic German oil that meets all the vw specs. this will avoid engine sludge buildup my vw has over 243,000 miles and still looks and runs like new."