#619 of 638 Vortex Blue Beetle - What do I get?
Jul 11, 2001 (12:50 pm)
I've looked on VW.com, and numerous VW enthusiast sites, but I can't find a feature/spec list of what comes on the Vortex Blue NB. I know it's a GLS 1.8 turbo with some extras, but dealers seem to differ in their opinion of what those are. Does anyone here know?
My wife and me test drove a '98 Beetle this weekend and just loved it! It's a Silver, 5-speed w/ CD changer in the trunk with 29k. Anyway the dealer said he needed to get some things looked at (oil light keeps coming on) but I was planning on purchasing it this coming weekend. After reading some of the reviews about maintance I'm not so sure. Does anyone have anything to say good about this car as far as repairs go and reliability. Thanks in advance.
I have a '98 Suzuki, and want to trade it for a '99 VW New Beetle GLS 1.8 Turbo with 5 speed manual. The beetle has 21,400 miles on it, and looks and drives great! I fell in love with it as soon as I pulled out of the dealers lot and squalled tires (woops), of course, that was after spending 10 minutes trying to find reverse. I've read all of the problems and costs of fixing the beetles, but I still love the car. I do have other choices, however. If any of you have any feedback as to whether I should trade my '98 Sidekick Sport with a failing rear differential (only "major" problem I've had with it, besides radio/tape player, and lots of hardware probs, like the grill falling out on the freeway) in on a '99 Bug, tell me if I'm making a mistake. I am basically asking the same question as the guy above me here; reliability and all that good stuff. I want to get rid of a problem car, not get another one. I appreciate all advice!!!
#622 of 638 Impressive to say the least (Watch out Asian imports!)
Jul 23, 2001 (11:05 am)
I'd just like to say that I'm sooooooo impressed with everything I've seen from Volkswagen lately, and their future direction. A while back, I wouldn't have considered a Volkswagen, being a die-hard Toyota fan. The addition of the TDI engine in several of their models really sparked my interest, especially after reading more about this engine at www.tdiclub.com - I started taking a look at Volkswagen in December of 2000 and that's where the love affair began.
The first thing that struck me was the obvious build quality of the vehicles. They're solid - not plasticky like Honda, and better designed than Toyota vehicles. The second thing that really impressed me was the driveability, and the fact that driving a Jetta or a Golf was a heck of a lot of fun - any model - from the TDI to the 1.8T was just a blast!!!! These vehicles just felt right!
I was sold on the Jetta - I ordered a TDI. The day it came in, the salesman told me I had to check out this Beetle TDI. I had always kind of laughed at these cars in the past, thinking they we're cute, but never entertaining the thought of buying one. I decided what the heck... I went for a test drive. WOW! The Beetle was definitely the most fun to drive of the bunch, with great handling and responsive feel. It felt like a sports car... Really... Like a fine sports car, but it didn't beat you up like one. The suspension was perfectly tuned to strike a balance between comfort and "feel". Sitting in the Beetle was like sitting in a spaceship. Unlike anything I had ever driven before. I loved all the cool appointments, the ease of getting in and out of the back seat, the enormous head and leg room... What was not to like about this car? It was fun to drive, felt quicker and sportier than the Jetta and Golf, got great gas mileage, etc.. etc.. etc.. I fell in love!!!!
That day, I drove home with the Beetle, still not believing what I had done. I loved it. To this day, I absolutely love the car. People laugh and joke about it.. but simply put, it's got to be the best car I've ever owned. I love the "Torquey" TDI engine. I average 47MPG pure city driving, and I have a blast getting to and from work, shifting through the gears, cruising down the road.... Nothing compares to the experience of driving and owning the Beetle.
Sometimes when I get home from work, I'll sit out in the car for 15-20 minutes just jamming to tunes and enjoying life. Sometimes, I go for a drive to the store and end up cruising around for over an hour just listening to tunes and ....going with the flow, totally forgetting to go to the store. Why? I don't know. But something about the VW Beetle just makes life a little better... Know what I'm saying?
You just can't put a price tag on that!!!
In 7k miles, the only problems were a squeaky driver's seat and a door warning buzzer that went out - all quickly fixed by the friendly dealer, who stays open 'till midnight, and even washed my car for me! So far, I'm impressed with the whole ownership experience.
#623 of 638 Hi Guitarzan1- Congratulations on your New Beetle!
Jul 23, 2001 (2:06 pm)
Thanks for sharing all the details of your purchase with us. We look forward to more about your New Beetle ownership experience. Happy Motoring!
I have changed my mind about the Beetle. I have read that they, as well as Jettas and Golfs, are certainly not made well. I hate that. That absolutely disgusts me that an automaker will make a great car, one that, much like guitarzan1, you fall in love with it by just driving it, but is inferior in reliability. That is the way it was for me when I drove the '99 GLS 1.8T. I loved the car, totally and completely loved it! I pulled back into the dealership ready to deal, but I had to bring my trade for them to look at, which was at home immovable due to a shot rear end. I was happy, I was imagining myself, while driving home in my father's Toyota T100 pickup, about actually owning and driving that Beetle, and how much fun it would be. Well, my tune oh so quickly changed when I got home, read consumer reports, and got on here at Edmunds, and saw the tremendous problems with the '98 and '99 Beetles. the newer ones may be somewhat better, but not a great deal. I bought my Suzuki Sidekick thinking it was a great, reliable car. I have had problem after problem with it, although they weren't serious until now, and it has been out of operation for over a month. My point is, if you have the money and can afford the fun and be able to repair the car when it breaks down on you, then do it! I don't have that option, I have to have a reliable car, something that will need the least amount of maintenance as possible. So, off to Toyota I go. To a less fun to drive, not as cool Toyota Tacoma truck, that is going to run me 2 grand more than the Beetle which I loved, not to mention gas milage that won't touch the beetle's 30+. Good luck with your Beetle Guitarzan1, and keep us up to date. If things change and the new beetles are much, much improved over the old ones, then I might find myself in one, ya never know.
I really don't have any past experience to base my opinions of the Beetle on - this is my first VW product. But I now have 7700 miles on it and it's feels solid. But I really feel for people who have problems with their vehicles - any make or model. The problem is, you can't really make a statement about the reliability of any model vehicle, because they all have the potential to either be plagued by problems or problem-free, no matter who built it.
Incidently, since you mentioned Toyota, you should read my post in the Toyota Sienna forum about my nightmare experience with my brand new 2001 Sienna. As I type this, it is yet again in the shop - day 4 of this round - and I don't expect to see it back until next week sometime. It's been in the shop much of it's life already, and there's only 2000 miles on it. I've been a loyal Toyota owner forever, and my 2000 Tundra is flawless. But my Sienna - "the most reliable van you can buy" - has had an extreme amount of problems for a new vehicle, and I have many design complaints as well.
Regarding the Tacoma, I personally really like the design of the PreRunner with the TRD Offroad package. This really strikes a good balance between a capable offroad vehicle, and a realistic vehicle for my area (Dallas) where you don't need an offroad vehicle. The problem is.... have you see the crash test results for the Tacoma? I'd be scared to ride in one. The Tundra on the other hand is the safest full-size truck on the market. Incidently, when I was pricing out a PreRunner (I almost bought one), I discovered that my Tundra would be less than $3,000 more expensive, and it had a V8 engine. The decision was easy.
If you read many of the posts at www.tdiclub.com, you'll find that the VW TDI is a rock-solid engine. Some people have 200,000 miles on them with just normal maintenance. I hope my Beetle will be reliable long-term... only time will tell. Based on what I've heard, VW has made great improvements over the last two years on reliability. So far, so good.
Good luck with your Toyota! Let me know what you get.
Yeah, what you say is true, any car has the capabilities of having problems. Given that, I have pretty much decided, (with a little help from my wallet as well) to keep bugging Suzuki for help and just keep the Sidekick. Heck, after not having it for a month, it'll seem like I have a new car anyway! I do like the Tacoma, however, my idea on it and all Toyotas are, they are WAY overpriced, but I guess you get what you pay for. However, you didn't quite get that deal with that Sienna. I hate to hear that its been in the shop so much. People with comments like yours on their vehicles are the ones who put light at the end of my tunnel and make me think "who knows this may be the only thing that ever goes wrong with my car." So you have a Tundra? How do you like it? My dad was recently considering purchasing one, however he loves his '95 T100 SR5. Great truck, too bad it didn't last long. I also know a little about the VW TDI engines. You would not believe how long I sat and pondered on a new Jetta with the TDI. I thought, "man, I would get GREAT milage with that thing." However, Consumer Reports swayed me away from the Jetta, as well as all of VW's products with maybe the exception of the Passat, but I don't want one of those. Keep us posted on how it goes, and I wish you lots of luck! By the way, I was in the city where I drove that Beetle today, and I saw someone test driving it. It was such a fun car to drive, and it gave me tons of looks. It felt great to drive! I may wait and see how the 2001s do and maybe get one, or a Jetta 1.8T, later on. They seem like really fun cars! Good Luck!
I'm sad that you have been swayed from VW. I recently purchased a 2001 beetle and have put 4000 miles on it in 2 months, with not one problem (except I'm having trouble getting all the bug guts off the front. Any ideas anybody?). My boyfriend has an 86 Golf TDI with 250,000 miles. he hasn't had any major problems; just the usual stuff you might expect from a 14 year old car.
Consumer Reports sux. They won't give a good rating to anything, unless its a honda. Forget them ever recommending a new model car until its proven itself for at least 5 years. There are a lot of great cars out there, VWs too, that get a bad rap because people only talk about the negatives. When was the last time you saw a post on Edmunds that just said "my car is great. I haven't had any problems blah blah." ? For every person posting about problems here, there are probably 100 people with the same car who have had no trouble.