Earliest New Beetle TDI survivor??

Metal Man

Vendor
Joined
Sep 29, 2001
Location
Sunbury,PA 17801
TDI
1998 NB TDI, 2006 Jetta TDI, 2014 Tiguan gas, , 2019 E Golf X2
I bought my current 1998 New Beetle last spring, and it is a relatively early build with a VIN ending in 31485. I'm sure there have to be many earlier ones out there, so I'm curious what is still with us. Post what you have with a little info on the car. To make it interesting I'll send a little prize pack the owner of the lowest VIN New Beetle TDI still registered in the US.

Mine is VIN 31485 with a build date of 5/98. It's black/black 5 speed with 200k miles. Bought from the original owner, garage kept, great condition.
 

JDSwan87

Black Swamp Thing
Joined
Feb 9, 2014
Location
Michigan near Toledo
TDI
2001 Jetta TDI, 5 speed Lagoon Blue Metallic(sold); 2005 Jetta TDI Wagon auto
The key is the build date. Our VIN generation here (Jeep) is random when compared to how they roll off the line. If you had the track number, that is how they likely rolled off the line...
 

IndigoBlueWagon

TDIClub Enthusiast, Principal IDParts, Vendor , w/
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Location
South of Boston
TDI
'97 Passat, '99.5 Golf, '02 Jetta Wagon, '15 GSW
There are some early ones out there. And they have some odd parts configurations. One of our customers struggled to find an alternator to fit his '98: turns out it has an A3/B4 alternator in it. And tie rod ends on early ones are different.

I have a '99.5 Golf with a build date of 9/98. Early for that car.
 

gforce1108

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 2, 2006
Location
Newburgh, NY
TDI
04 Jetta GLS BEW, 14 Audi A7 V6 TDI
I sold mine last year. Still ran, but was pretty ratty. 3/98 build date. It had the oddball fuel filter (not listed on any parts sites I could find) and tie rod ends as mentioned above (found out while replacing the steering rack). It did have the ALH vs the even earlier AGR (canada I think? - wastegated turbo instead of VNT).
Never had to worry about a leaking oring on the thermostatic T though!
 

Diesel Fumes

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2008
Location
Creston, bc
TDI
2003 alh tdi 5 speed
Was there 1997 beetle tdis? Or did they start in 98? Curious, I searched for 1998 ones for sale. There's a few with even very low km. But nothing for 97
 

boertje

Veteran Member
Joined
May 24, 2002
Location
Coeur d'Alene, ID
TDI
'01, '01, '03, ‘06 NB - TDIs all.
frankencar on this Site had an early early black 98 that he lifted and had full audi TT suspension. I recall it was within the first 6000 made.
 

bigsexyTDI

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2005
Location
Kentucky
TDI
'98 NB, '04 Jetta
I have 2 early '98s. I need to get the VINs rounded up and post them here. I love those cars. Early Beetles are my favorite TDIs
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
Our system here shows only 13 '98s in history, and I only have two that still regularly come in here.

One, a gasser, is VIN 002345, a couple others are 0xxxxx.

Of the two I still see, one has over 420k miles... is worn but still kickin'. The other is a bit of a sad story:

It was bought new in late '97, diesel+manual, red, and was rarely driven. And by rarely, I mean in 2017 it had not even covered enough miles to get a fuel filter. It was garaged its entire life. The ONLY things that were not original were the tires and battery. It was bought by its current owner at an estate sale, for a price so low it makes me sick to think about. When I first saw the car, I told the guy I would pay him $1000 over whatever he got it for and he refused. I wanted it, because I knew what he would do to it, as I had already seen his previous car. It tends to trash it up a bit (and by "a bit", I mean you cannot actually see the floorboard anymore aside from where your feet need to work the pedals).

He still has it, and it just recently crossed 60k miles. I did its first fuel filter, and at the time upgraded it to the thermostat tee type like I eventually did with all the '98s when those goofy fuel filters became either ridiculously expensive or simply unavailable. I also did its timing belt (it still looked fine), and just recently replaced its headlight bulbs and oil cooler seals.

If I had gotten it, it would still be perfect. I would have preserved it, and brought it out on nice days only. As it is now, it just gets used daily like any other car.... nothing special. Kinda sad. Still probably one of the nicer ones out there, and probably one of the lower mileage ones.

Even the goofy little mirrors are still in perfect shape.
 

bigsexyTDI

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2005
Location
Kentucky
TDI
'98 NB, '04 Jetta
Man that stinks. Keep after him. I know where a sub 20k mile one is but it is an 01M... :(
 

gforce1108

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 2, 2006
Location
Newburgh, NY
TDI
04 Jetta GLS BEW, 14 Audi A7 V6 TDI
Back when the new beetle came out in 98, everybody wanted one - unless it was a diesel. Dealers wanted down payments before you could test drive one. One dealer near me had a TDI that nobody wanted and I was able to drive it. I did really like it - funny how 10 years later in 2008 I ended up with an identical car.
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
Our dealer had no problem selling the diesels. Especially with the slushbox, which was the first TDI available for us with only two pedals. The reason there were so many more gas engines was because the engine plant in Poland was sacked with orders for diesels.
 

Nevada_TDI

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 17, 2008
Location
Reno, sort of...
TDI
2001 Jetta TDI
Back when the new beetle came out in 98, everybody wanted one - unless it was a diesel. Dealers wanted down payments before you could test drive one. One dealer near me had a TDI that nobody wanted and I was able to drive it. I did really like it - funny how 10 years later in 2008 I ended up with an identical car.
Well, that is because you have a Bug up your ass. j/k
 

Metal Man

Vendor
Joined
Sep 29, 2001
Location
Sunbury,PA 17801
TDI
1998 NB TDI, 2006 Jetta TDI, 2014 Tiguan gas, , 2019 E Golf X2
We located a few early New Beetles. There must be more around, let's hear about them.
 

94cobra2615

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2013
Location
ohio
TDI
99 jetta tdi
There's a gas one that just came in to the local upullandpay. Has roll up windows.
3VWBB61C1WM050326
Itll be crushed in about 30 days.
Not a tdi but figured I'd post it

Best thing about the 98 Beetles is the solid arm rest door panels. No saggy vinyl.
 

bigsexyTDI

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2005
Location
Kentucky
TDI
'98 NB, '04 Jetta
There's a gas one that just came in to the local upullandpay. Has roll up windows.
3VWBB61C1WM050326
Itll be crushed in about 30 days.
Not a tdi but figured I'd post it

Best thing about the 98 Beetles is the solid arm rest door panels. No saggy vinyl.
Ugh... what color? I would like to have the manual window doors
 

kjclow

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Apr 26, 2003
Location
Charlotte, NC
TDI
2010 JSW TDI silver and black. 2017 Ram Ecodiesel dark red with brown and beige interior.
Even in 2000, the beetles were still in enough of a demand that some of the dealers in Charlotte were taking deposits on cars still on the trucks. I don't remember them trying to jack the price but I did have one dealer sell one out from under me. Test drove and offered to leave a CC deposit on Wednesday. Went back on Friday to find out that they sold it the same evening I tried to hold it. Only difference between that and the one I ended up buying from another dealer was that it had leather seats.
 

frenchy2

Member
Joined
Oct 13, 2016
Location
Central Valley, CA
TDI
1999 New Beetle TDI (Stinker)
Bought a 1998 black TDI Beetle new; sold it when my parents both passed away and started using my parents' 99 TDI Beetle (red); son now drives it and we are almost at 400,000 (knock on wood). Because my parents bought the 1999 new (on Valentine's Day, so happy birthday to Stinker as we call her), I was thinking of restoring it once my son decides if he is going to continue restoring and driving his 87 Ford pickup.
 

Metal Man

Vendor
Joined
Sep 29, 2001
Location
Sunbury,PA 17801
TDI
1998 NB TDI, 2006 Jetta TDI, 2014 Tiguan gas, , 2019 E Golf X2
We had no problem buying our 99 red TDI 5 speed NB in June of 99. We paid $500 off sticker. I think sticker was $19,525 and I had a bunch of points from the VW credit card that went towards it too.
 

Metal Man

Vendor
Joined
Sep 29, 2001
Location
Sunbury,PA 17801
TDI
1998 NB TDI, 2006 Jetta TDI, 2014 Tiguan gas, , 2019 E Golf X2
I'll let this run until the end of March at that point I'll ship a little prize pack to the owner of the earliest registered TDI New Beetle. If you have an early one post about it here.
 

Metal Man

Vendor
Joined
Sep 29, 2001
Location
Sunbury,PA 17801
TDI
1998 NB TDI, 2006 Jetta TDI, 2014 Tiguan gas, , 2019 E Golf X2
PrestonR looks to be the owner of the oldest NB TDI still on the road that posted here. His VIN ends in 18299. If you have one that's older you have until midnight eastern time to post about it here for the prize pack.
Feel free to keep this going, if you have an early New Beetle TDI that's still on the road let's hear about it.
 

gforce1108

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 2, 2006
Location
Newburgh, NY
TDI
04 Jetta GLS BEW, 14 Audi A7 V6 TDI
PrestonR looks to be the owner of the oldest NB TDI still on the road that posted here. His VIN ends in 18299. If you have one that's older you have until midnight eastern time to post about it here for the prize pack.
Feel free to keep this going, if you have an early New Beetle TDI that's still on the road let's hear about it.
That's gotta be pretty old then... my 98 ended with 19861 but I thought it was 3/98 build. Maybe not. :unsure:
 
Top