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TDI Cars for Sale/Wanted VW TDI/Diesel cars for sale and wanted.

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Old October 22nd, 2019, 09:03   #1
GirlWithaStick
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Default VA: Would anyone buy this 03 TDI Jetta Wagon

Hi..

Background - I bought an '03 TDI Jetta GLS wagon (ALH engine), an automatic with about 180k on it almost 2yrs ago. It was from the original owner who had every piece of paperwork on it and did all his work at the same dealership. When I bought it, he had already had had the transmission replaced. It was never very smooth shifting when I bought it, but had the intention of converting it to a 5 spd. Sure enough, the transmission went on it at around 195k and because I could not find anyone to do a conversion for me (anyone that I could trust/with a good reputation), I had the automatic replaced again.

Since I intended to keep this car for the long haul, I also had tons of other work done to get it in top shape (from a TDIclub recommended shop) - things done include: timing belt, glowplug harness & glow plugs, serpentine belt & tensioner, engine speed sensor, water pump. The engine runs great, there are no lights on the dash. Interior is clean, everything works. It is silver with grey leather interior, sunroof, heated seats, tinted windows. All in very good condition. a few minor rust spots (always a VA car). Mileage at ~215k.

The problem is - now at ~ 215k mileage, the transmission has a problem again. It runs in 1,2,3 but was having issues with "D". It's currently at the transmission shop awaiting my decision. Anyway, I am not in the position to keep fixing this and I haven't found anywhere that is willing to swap the transmission. It's a great car in great shape (except for the trans)

I would hope to get about 4k out of it as I have put in so much more. I realize it may be high, but really, this car needs nothing else but a trans fix. I could fix it, but have a feeling there would be more interest in people wanting to swap it out, so don't want to waste the money.

I wanted to feel out whether there would be a market for this car at this price or not? Or what would it be worth? I could also fix the transmission.

Any and all thoughts or advice welcome!
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 09:21   #2
hskrdu
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Find a TDI specfic guru who can properly diagnose the transmission issue and evaluate cost of repair vs sale. I'd keep it either way, but I love the MkIV. I'm guessing, since you already paid for the auto trans replacement that a 5M swap is off the table, but there are certainly people within a reasonable drive that can do it.

If you have to sell, 4k is probably high if it needs trans work, which will scare off a lot of buyers. Although low mileage / pristine wagons can fetch more, these tend to be 5M and are non rust-belt.
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 09:29   #3
90HorseBeetle
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Good luck, it seems perfect 03 wagons with a 5 speed are barely worth $5k and probably less than $4k in this part of the country.

I may have a five speed and a clutch I would let you have for a song; I think my (NB) is totaled and if you PM me I will send you Tom E in Stafford I think he might be willing to do the conversion. I am looking for a surrogate for my drive train but I am told it isn't worth it on a NB.
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 09:32   #4
GirlWithaStick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hskrdu View Post
Find a TDI specfic guru who can properly diagnose the transmission issue and evaluate cost of repair vs sale. I'd keep it either way, but I love the MkIV. I'm guessing, since you already paid for the auto trans replacement that a 5M swap is off the table, but there are certainly people within a reasonable drive that can do it.

If you have to sell, 4k is probably high if it needs trans work, which will scare off a lot of buyers. Although low mileage / pristine wagons can fetch more, these tend to be 5M and are non rust-belt.

Thanks for your response. Actually, the guy that did all the other work talked me out of the 5M swap and he was my best lead locally to do it(Virginia Beach area). I may try him again, but not sure I can afford to put that much money into it again. Honestly, I'm ready to sell it, so if I did do the swap, would I get that money back out of it?
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 17:39   #5
hskrdu
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Originally Posted by GirlWithaStick View Post
Thanks for your response. Actually, the guy that did all the other work talked me out of the 5M swap and he was my best lead locally to do it(Virginia Beach area). I may try him again, but not sure I can afford to put that much money into it again. Honestly, I'm ready to sell it, so if I did do the swap, would I get that money back out of it?
Was the mechanic listed in the TDIClub list of trusted shops? Even some of those (I hate to admit) are places I wouldn't take our cars. Was this the same mech that installed the now failing auto trans?

IMO, the only reason not to install the 5M is because some owners need the auto, or due to costs of overall 5M install.

The question of whether you'll get your money back is really driven by a comparison of three factors: What you can get for the car in its current state, what you can get for the car after the swap, and what you pay for 5M swap parts and install. I hate to say it, but you'll likely not see a 100% return on the cost of the swap, unless you get a deal on the parts/labor. That being said, MkIV TDIs with a failed 01M are fairly common, and even wagons do not command much money if they can't be driven away after a sale. If the market is soft now, and you get the right buyer after a swap by a guru, and the car is otherwise in excellent overall condition, then you could see ROI or a profit from the swap. I'd do it anyway, just because it's the right thing to do by the car, but most people don't operate that way these days. You might also get good parts cheap, as offered above, which would change the equation.

Tom might not do a trans swap, but jimbote is not far away from you in NC.
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Last edited by hskrdu; October 22nd, 2019 at 17:45.
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 17:53   #6
hskrdu
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You are likely already familiar with these, but if not, here are some good resources regarding the auto tans and the swap. There might be info in here which will help, or fix the current problem for less money. These are all from Rich's shop.

http://kansascitytdi.com/o1m-faq/
http://kansascitytdi.com/01m-to-5-speed-conversion-800/
http://kansascitytdi.com/01m-valve-body-repair/
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 19:24   #7
GirlWithaStick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hskrdu View Post
Was the mechanic listed in the TDIClub list of trusted shops? Even some of those (I hate to admit) are places I wouldn't take our cars. Was this the same mech that installed the now failing auto trans?

IMO, the only reason not to install the 5M is because some owners need the auto, or due to costs of overall 5M install.

The question of whether you'll get your money back is really driven by a comparison of three factors: What you can get for the car in its current state, what you can get for the car after the swap, and what you pay for 5M swap parts and install. I hate to say it, but you'll likely not see a 100% return on the cost of the swap, unless you get a deal on the parts/labor. That being said, MkIV TDIs with a failed 01M are fairly common, and even wagons do not command much money if they can't be driven away after a sale. If the market is soft now, and you get the right buyer after a swap by a guru, and the car is otherwise in excellent overall condition, then you could see ROI or a profit from the swap. I'd do it anyway, just because it's the right thing to do by the car, but most people don't operate that way these days. You might also get good parts cheap, as offered above, which would change the equation.

Tom might not do a trans swap, but jimbote is not far away from you in NC.

Yes, he was in the list of trusted shops, and no, he did not do the transmission, but he recommended the shop that did. Don't know that he is TDI specific but he is 100% VW/Audi - I think the reason for not wanting to do the swap was more about that he didn't really have the time, and he convinced me that it wouldn't be worth it - not the cost so much as procuring all the parts he'd need to do it...that's what I recall anyway. I'm happy with the work he did, and I did reach out to him again to see what his thoughts were on a swap - esp if I could get cheap parts. We'll see...

The car is actually driveable right now, just not highway speed. When I noticed the problem, 1st, 2nd & 3rd were working, only 'D' was not. And right before the tow truck arrived, I tried again, and 'D' was working. Also, just to note, that before I did all these fixes (trans, timing belt, glow plugs etc.) the car was totally not driveable, listed it on Craigslist and within a few hours had about 4-5 offers for just under ~2k. So at least I think I could get that, but not sure how much more.
jimbote? Can you give me more info?
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 22:24   #8
hskrdu
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GirlWithaStick View Post
Yes, he was in the list of trusted shops, and no, he did not do the transmission, but he recommended the shop that did. Don't know that he is TDI specific but he is 100% VW/Audi - I think the reason for not wanting to do the swap was more about that he didn't really have the time, and he convinced me that it wouldn't be worth it - not the cost so much as procuring all the parts he'd need to do it...that's what I recall anyway. I'm happy with the work he did, and I did reach out to him again to see what his thoughts were on a swap - esp if I could get cheap parts. We'll see...

The car is actually driveable right now, just not highway speed. When I noticed the problem, 1st, 2nd & 3rd were working, only 'D' was not. And right before the tow truck arrived, I tried again, and 'D' was working. Also, just to note, that before I did all these fixes (trans, timing belt, glow plugs etc.) the car was totally not driveable, listed it on Craigslist and within a few hours had about 4-5 offers for just under ~2k. So at least I think I could get that, but not sure how much more.
jimbote? Can you give me more info?

Yes, I wouldn't take less than $2k for it. The problem should really be evaluated by someone who can give you a definite and accurate diagnosis. If you search the threads here, you'll find that many of the 01M transmissions need "minor" fixes, not replacement. If it's going into drive after a delay, it might not be toast. Is the the trans fluid full? Do you have Ross-Tech VCDS and a scan, or any codes? There are some sensors that can be problem, too.

People advertise 5M swap items here as well as on Craigslist (which may be a gamble on the quality of the parts). I've seen a few good deals over the last 6 months.

You could ask Tom or Jim what they think, but iit can be hard to diagnose from afar:

https://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=297154
http://forums.tdiclub.com/member.php?u=46804

Lastly, the swap is well-documented, so if you are feeling brave and have free time, you could tackle it yourself with help from members who are able to assist.
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Old October 23rd, 2019, 17:09   #9
GirlWithaStick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hskrdu View Post
Yes, I wouldn't take less than $2k for it. The problem should really be evaluated by someone who can give you a definite and accurate diagnosis. If you search the threads here, you'll find that many of the 01M transmissions need "minor" fixes, not replacement. If it's going into drive after a delay, it might not be toast. Is the the trans fluid full? Do you have Ross-Tech VCDS and a scan, or any codes? There are some sensors that can be problem, too.

People advertise 5M swap items here as well as on Craigslist (which may be a gamble on the quality of the parts). I've seen a few good deals over the last 6 months.

You could ask Tom or Jim what they think, but iit can be hard to diagnose from afar:

https://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=297154
http://forums.tdiclub.com/member.php?u=46804

Lastly, the swap is well-documented, so if you are feeling brave and have free time, you could tackle it yourself with help from members who are able to assist.



OK. Thanks for all that. I don't have the car here right now, it's still sitting in the transmission shop an hour from here. I towed it there thinking it was still under the 1yr warranty, not realizing the mileage made it ineligible. I'm just debating what to do.....I mean, I just did a replacement..that lasted only 16k miles. I'll see if I can get more info from the shop then follow up with leads here. I'm starting to think...I'll tow it home and sell it as is - I'm def not up to a swap - not brave and no free time ;-)
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Old October 23rd, 2019, 17:59   #10
hskrdu
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If I had spent the cash on a replacement, and it failed 16k miles later, I'd want the shop who installed to help out with a free/low cost diagnosis or fix. A replaced 01M should have gone another 80,000 miles+. Obviously they can stick to the letter of the warranty, but the spirit is preferable when there is no reason to be believe that the driver is somehow at fault. Of course, I'd probably not have that same shop touch the car again, so it's likely a moot point. Before you give up on it, just make sure that it actually needs replacement, and isn't a sensor or something "minor." More than one TDI has been sold for less than its worth because the auto trans was declared dead prematurely. Just a little research will help. If you don't have VCDS, many club members will scan for you, there's actually a thread with volunteers listed.
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Old October 23rd, 2019, 21:28   #11
mrurbina
 
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Dang, sucks where you are..the whole area around va beach and outer banks is a VW dead zone. I've gotten 2 wagons of out that area.. The only tdi specific part of the 5 speed swap is the trans and starter..everything else can come from a manual. Obviously the electrical aspect of it is where most shops will shy away and can lead to expensive shop time cost if they don't know how to go about it. Try local vw FB groups to see if theres anyone closer that can do it cheaper
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Old October 24th, 2019, 06:11   #12
GirlWithaStick
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Dang, sucks where you are..the whole area around va beach and outer banks is a VW dead zone. I've gotten 2 wagons of out that area.. The only tdi specific part of the 5 speed swap is the trans and starter..everything else can come from a manual. Obviously the electrical aspect of it is where most shops will shy away and can lead to expensive shop time cost if they don't know how to go about it. Try local vw FB groups to see if theres anyone closer that can do it cheaper

I'm not actually in VA Beach, but the car is, (I'm an hour north). I used Whiteheads for the other work (non trans) and he was the recommended shop to do a swap - but he really talked me out of it. I'm trying to get with him to see if he'd look at the trans for a better diagnosis. My local mechanic who does work on TDIs wouldn't touch the auto trans. I did a pretty thorough check for a TDI mechanic before - and all the leads I had were deadends.
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Old October 24th, 2019, 09:55   #13
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Your local guy wouldn't want to do the swap?

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Old October 24th, 2019, 10:54   #14
GirlWithaStick
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Your local guy wouldn't want to do the swap?

Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk

Nope! Tried him first. He's actually a diesel mechanic at a bigger shop and has owned & repaired many TDI's - he did a lot work on my previous '04 Golf GLS 5spd. Now, if I brought him the parts? I never asked that question...
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Old October 24th, 2019, 11:03   #15
brady rogers
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I sent you a PM. I have done quite a few swaps.
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