Gasoline Volkswagens

radereb

Active member
Joined
May 12, 2015
Location
USA
TDI
Jetta
I've always heard that gasoline engines for Volkswagens are not reliable and TDIs are the best (which is why I bought a TDI). I've decided to go with the buyback and I would consider another Volkswagen but I keep thinking of all the people and horror stories I have heard about gasoline VWs. If I were to buy another VW I would go with a Golf SEL or Alltrack. Any advice would be appreciated!
 

Tornado TDI

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Location
Chilliwack, British Columbia
TDI
2015 Jetta TDI Highline 6MT
My only experience with gas VW's is with my GTI 16V I've had for 25 years.
Still runs like new. The only thing besides regular maintenance I've had to do is replace the fuel pump about 15 years ago.
 

Mike_04GolfTDI

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 19, 2003
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
Mine: 2019 Golf R DSG, Wife's: 2015 Golf Comfortline TDI
My experience has been that every make and model of car has problems and needs repairs from time to time. I've owned about 30 cars.
 

Redgrom

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2016
Location
San Clemente
TDI
2012 jsw
Wife's old Passat wagon was great till the valves burnt at around 120k, so not bad but far from the mileage I originally expected from the TDI
 

showdown 42

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2012
Location
naples,FL
TDI
2016 TDI touareg
If you want reliability get a Toyota or Honda and be done with it. I will not be buying a VW gasser. I might buy a BMW or MB however.
 

solman1

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 8, 2014
Location
New Jersey
TDI
14 Jetta TDI-DSG-Prem.
I can't speak as to reliability because I have not owned one.
I did however drive the Jetta sport 1.8L and the Golf 1.8L l both with automatic trans. While the performance was reasonable it wasn't enough to make me want to get rid of my tdi.
 

RollingCoal

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2015
Location
Md
TDI
2015 Golf Tdi SEL
If you want reliability get a Toyota or Honda and be done with it. I will not be buying a VW gasser. I might buy a BMW or MB however.
Is that decision made from a standpoint of reliability. I know modern bmw and mb are fairly reliable but repair costs can be astronomical even for smaller stuff. If your willing to wrench yourself it's not as bad but VW is certainly cheaper to maintain.

I haven't owned a VW gasser but several good friends of mine have had many over the years. Not one had any catastrophic failure and the only things that went wrong could go wrong on any vehicle and were minor.
 

TDI smile

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2012
Location
Edmonton, Alberta (b4 BC - LOWER MAINLAND = Chilli
TDI
2002 TDI (ALH) with 513,000 km. First Owner and very happy... No Problems, never left us stranded on the Highway. Average useage is about between under 4 ltr. and 5 ltr. Normal longdistance travel: 4.1/100
From the 23 VW's I drove, 22 were gasser.... No one gave me a Headache, left me stranded or whatever....To me VW is one of the BETTER cars around for the money they cost! MERCEDES gave me more Headache.
 

02TDIred

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 2, 2014
Location
SD
TDI
02 Jetta (225K, retired), 05 JSW (334K, retired) 2012 JSW, SEL Gone, 2016 GSW/TSI/6A
From the 23 VW's I drove, 22 were gasser.... No one gave me a Headache, left me stranded or whatever....To me VW is one of the BETTER cars around for the money they cost! MERCEDES gave me more Headache.
If you have ever worked on the '60s era MB 600 edition, their "Grand Dame" you'll have more than headaches, as in ulcers, rashes, hives and PTSD every time you test drive it… especially if yer' trying to fix the "valet lights" or the hydro-pneumatic suspension. DAMHIK :eek:
 
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MrSprdSheet

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 6, 2005
Location
East Coast
TDI
'09 JSW TDI
Is that decision made from a standpoint of reliability. I know modern bmw and mb are fairly reliable but repair costs can be astronomical even for smaller stuff. If your willing to wrench yourself it's not as bad but VW is certainly cheaper to maintain.
All Euro repair costs are becoming astronomical. To me, its a sign they depend on them. DSG service is incredibly simple, for instance, and they get, what, $800?

Only my VW experience, but I've had 4 gasers, to 1 diesel, and couldn't disagree more. The gas cars held up. It is easy to ding the diesel, on its exhaust issues alone. Fair, or unfair, I think if your plan is to maintain an as-delivered TDI exhaust system past the warranty, today, you may be in for quite a $$ ride. The gasers don't have NOx issues. They don't have soot loaded exhaust destroying their turbos sooner. You have to want TDI, and believe over any other consideration that you're coming out ahead.
 

chadbag

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 8, 2013
Location
Utah
TDI
2x 2013 JSW (1 manual BOUGHT BACK 12/20/16, 1 DSG BOUGHT BACK 1/14/17), Audi A3 e-tron gas-plugin-hybrid, gas Volvo V60
I've had 3 VW gassers (89, 97, 06) and 2 TDI (both 13s). The 89 gasser was totaled in a pileup (not my fault), but the 97 we had for some 13 or so years and it needed no major repairs in that time frame -- just the standard brakes, some exhaust work, and normal scheduled maintenance. The 06 we had for 7 years before going to the TDI and the only issue besides wear/tear items and maintenance was an A/C compressor that failed after about 5 years. My VW gasser experience has been just fine, but nothing since the 2006 model.
 

BuyMeBackSoon

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2016
Location
Or
TDI
2013 golf
The question in my mind is more like, does VW deserve to have my money and continued support. Probably not. Based on the communication of the two nearest dealerships I am more likely to just turn it in and head over to Honda or MINI.

The diesel engine sets the Golf apart from other cars, without it, blandness.
 

Perfectreign

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2013
Location
Los Angeles
TDI
2000 Jetta GLS 5-speed
If you want reliability get a Toyota
Yeah, a nice FJ-40 toyota. Anything past the '80s is pure junk and mostly built by slave labor.

I might buy a BMW or MB however.
From what I know, those cars tend to spend more time in the shop than average, unless you're looking at a W123 or W124 mercedes. Stay away from any mercedes W2XX models.
 

02TDIred

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 2, 2014
Location
SD
TDI
02 Jetta (225K, retired), 05 JSW (334K, retired) 2012 JSW, SEL Gone, 2016 GSW/TSI/6A
This is a great thread, considering the news the Alltrack is coming with a 6MT.
My dealer has $100 deposit on my ideal GSW (2015). They also have a deposit on a 2017 GSW 4Motion… which also comes as a 6MT, albeit as a gasser.
 
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Matt-98AHU

Loose Nut Behind the Wheel Vendor
Joined
Apr 23, 2006
Location
Gresham, OR
TDI
2001 Golf TDI, 2005 Passat wagon, 2004 Touareg V10.
VW's 1.8 TSI is surprisingly efficient, even when bolted to the 09G slushbox automatic.

But, it's not without its issues. They had a rash of these motors snap the end of their intake camshaft off last year... The very back section that drives the vacuum pump and high pressure fuel pump.

Like most any direct injected gas motor as well, they tend to carbon up their intake ports in the cylinder head. This varies depending on driving conditions and even oil used. The harder you drive it, the cleaner it stays.

Earlier TSI motors had issues with the chain tensioner causing the cam timing chain to slacken enough to allow the cams to jump time. They've had a couple revisions of the part since then, we'll see how long they last. Though I suppose the frequency of failure has been pretty small.

The other issue is the water pumps on the 2.0 TSI. I'm pretty sure the 1.8 is similar, but it's been awhile since I looked at one. Since they came out with the chain drive TSI engines, they've had a huge amount of water pump failures. It's extremely common and I've personally replaced a couple that were still under warranty with less than 10,000 miles on the clock. The failure rate on these pumps is pretty alarming, and they've been doing it since 2008. In 2015 they were still commonly failing.

They have yet another updated part that has a bit more metal to the casing of the assembly instead of being entirely plastic. Time will tell if that actually helps prolong their life.

Kind of a shame because the do have great drivability with a surprising amount of low end grunt for a small gas engine.

I wouldn't mind a Mk7 GTI. That setup in particular is a riot to drive. But I would be very worried about the water pump suddenly puking most of the engine's coolant out without warning...
 

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.
The diesel engine sets the Golf apart from other cars, without it, blandness.
That's been my general thoughts as well. Although, if VW sweetens the deal enough, I may let them have the JSW back and get a gasser GSW. That also assumes that I can't get a new GSW diesel.
 

TDI2000Zim

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 23, 2010
Location
NJ
TDI
VW hat meinen '14 Passat TDiSE getötet.
VW Gas engines: I owned two Jettas, and drove a Beetle on loan for a few years. Nothing impressive, except that the handling was better than Toyota.

However, I had a Nissan Altima in the 90's that was far better than my Jettas had ever been; more reliable, quieter and powerful.

So, at this point in history, if it isn't a VW diesel, I rather drive Japanese.
 

FordGuy100

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2011
Location
Silverton, OR
TDI
2004 Jetta TDI
I enjoy the 1.4t. It isnt a powerhouse, but it has good low end torque, and pulls better than a stage 1 BEW once you get into the RPM's. Its good on fuel as well. Scheduled maintenance should be cheaper as well. Time will tell how reliable it is. They did got to a timing belt on the 1.4t, so hopefully the timing problems wont be a hassle.
 

PlaneCrazy

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Jan 3, 2000
Location
Province of Quebec, Canada
TDI
Gone...
I've had two VW gassers and neither have been troublesome. In fact my last TDI was way less reliable in its first year, than my '16 Golf TSI has been in the first year.

So far I've had exactly zero issues with the drivetrain. Only two small issues otherwise: the Apple CarPlay infotainment system was prone to occasional hiccups, fixed by TSB, and a fastener came off an underbody panel. So far 23k km on it. I average 6.0 L/100 km in summer, and have seen as low as 5.2 L/100 km on the highway (calculated), but more typically average around 5.7 L/100 km on the highway (42 mpg). On *regular* gas.

My previous was a 2007 Passat 2.0T wagon with 6-speed manual. No major issues in 160k km (100k miles). Traded it in on my '11 Mk VI Golf TDI when I had a long commute again. Loved to drive the Mk VI, but hated to own it. Nothing but trouble with that car.

I love my '16 Golf TSI. Good low-end torque, better than the 1.9 BEW (PD) TDI I once owned, but with a much better top end.

If the 1.4 TSI was offered in the Golf, I'd buy one instead of the 1.8. Same torque, better fuel efficiency but with 20 less HP; should still be adequate. I do need a hatchback though, so no Jetta for me.
 

Dimitri16V

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Jan 30, 2005
Location
DE
TDI
01 Golf, 04 Golf
Picked up a Corolla S and a Golf S TSI both manuals this year
Corolla has been flawless , is a high speed screamer once you get the dual VVTI to kick in, Golf has better torque curve and better interior materials
Golf gets its plastic oil pan replaced with a reinforced metal one
Golf gets way better fuel economy
Both cars have chains and the engine layout is similar so working on them should be easy
Golf has a funky thermostat setup to allow for faster warm up , that I am a little bit afraid it may be a failure item
Golf was cheaper , I paid less for it than I did for my 04 TDI
If you plan on keeping a new car for more than 5 years , go Japanese
 

k^2

Veteran Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2013
Location
MI
TDI
2010 Jetta Sportwagen DSG - Sold back to VW. Replaced with Sportwagen 2.5 GAS
My first VW was 1994 MK3 Jetta. Bought it 6 years old used with 100K miles. Drove it for 7 years and put another 180K. Now besides my JSW I have had a 2007 Golf/Rabbit. The car now has 125K miles and still rides on original front brake pads. The only unscheduled maintenance on it was $60 crankshaft speed sensor which I replaced myself. While my JSW has had $500 worth of sensor replaced. Thank god I had the VW visa card to cover those costs.
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis (where it's safe)
TDI
There are just too many to list....
I think this is a loaded question, since it really doesn't give any context.

Volkswagen Group has been making gasoline fueled engines since before WW2. There are air cooled, water cooled, inline, boxer, V, VR, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10 cylinders, OHV, SOHC, DOHC, gear, belt, chain driven cams, naturally aspirated, turbocharged, supercharged, port injected, CIS injected, direct injected, carburetted, magnesium case, aluminum case, cast iron, .... the combination is basically as varied or possibly more so than any other manufacturer.

And the vehicles in which they were bolted have been just as varied. Rear engine, front engine, mid engine, RWD, FWD, AWD, transverse mounted, longitudinal.

Heck, they even built a few hybrids! :p

The last of the REALLY good gasoline fueled engines that was sold in this country left the dealer showroom last year, and it was only found in the Jetta S. Simple, sturdy, tough, reliable, tried and true. I'd place that engine 9and its precursors dating back to 1998) over ANY other VAG gasoline fueled engine sold here in the last 25+ years, and I'd place it on par with the ALH TDI in general ease of service and durability. Heck, it shares much of the same basic design. :p
 

Lightflyer1

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Sep 13, 2005
Location
Round Rock, Texas
TDI
2015 Beetle tdi dsg
The last of the REALLY good gasoline fueled engines that was sold in this country left the dealer showroom last year, and it was only found in the Jetta S. Simple, sturdy, tough, reliable, tried and true. I'd place that engine 9and its precursors dating back to 1998) over ANY other VAG gasoline fueled engine sold here in the last 25+ years, and I'd place it on par with the ALH TDI in general ease of service and durability. Heck, it shares much of the same basic design. :p
The 2.0l you mean? Why not just put it out there? Is this the same as the 2.0 l in the 2008 Passat?
 
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