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What is "wrong" with these new subcompacts?



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    What do you guys think of VW's competitor to the Smart series?

    Should they bother bringing it there? Or bring the Lupo instead?
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    It's a goofy thing, but VW needs something to reclaim their small-car mojo here. Everything they sell now in the US is too big and too heavy.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,730
    I would be very concerned about getting a VW in the smart car class. VW has some serious quality and dependability issues with the mainstream vehicles they sell in this country. The one reasonable caveat that people give who prefer VWs is their verses their counterparts is performance and handling. Neither of those qualities will likely be in attendance with a sub compact entry level car from VW. All you would have is the questionable dependability.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,578
    I got a ride in a VW Golf yesterday. Not sure of the year but it had 61K miles on it, so it was at least a few years old. I have to admit I was pretty impressed with the interior room. Now the wheel well did cut into foot room, somewhat, but legroom in that car was still 1979 New Yorker impressive!

    Of course, you wouldn't be able to put anybody in the seat behind me except for a circus dwarf or a double amputee, but I was still impressed. And it was one of those cars where if I had to, I could move the seat up a bit and still not be cramped, if I had to free up some back seat room.

    I think it's also amusing how the Germans can make an interior that's mostly hard plastic but it ends up coming off as simply stark...not cheap. Of course, by 61000 miles, a VW could be pushing the end of its useful life! :P
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    OK, then, if you want dependability, what about the Toyota iQ:

    Not only that, it's a 3+1, so dad could pick up both kids if mom gets caught up somewhere in the minivan.

    The idea has more legs than the Smart.
  • michaellmichaell Posts: 4,300
    I always believed there was room in the VW lineup for the Polo/Lupo to be sold here in the states .. could compete against the Versa, Yaris, etc.

    I believe that we'll be seeing the Opel (Saturn) Corsa in 2010-2011.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I think so, too.

    The Golf V has grown, and you might even say the GTI is a bit heavy/big to fill the mission the original 1984 model had.
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    The iQ is probably a "conceptized" successor to the Aygo. I doubt the 2+1 seating would ever see production.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yeah, they can't possibly have two models smaller than the Yaris.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    It might have about 18-19K miles to go before things start with a check engine light.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Sad, but true.

    My friend has her Passat 1.8T in the shop...again. She's had a Ford Five Hundred loaner for so long that I thought she had traded in for the Ford.

    Engine troubles, too.
  • 1.8T is a bad motor.

    I thought they solved a lot of the problems with the 2.0T but a coworker has that engine in his Passat and is constantly having problems with it.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yeah? They were both technically advanced engines at their launch, so that's a shame.

    The 1.8T had lots of ignition coil problems, but she's having these issues right now, long after those were supposedly resolved.
  • Also sludge problems on the 1.8T. Also timing belt problems.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,730
    It just may be that VW is how the Germans get revenge for losing WWII.
  • Yeah the 1.8T isn't bad bad. It is just an expensive engine to maintain. Actually many if not all VW's are expensive. For our Jetta, we got a new clutch, the VW dealer wanted $1,800 and we found some specialists that charged $1,500. This was only for a basic 5 speed.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,730
    Darn, I only paid a bit over $1050.00 to rebuild a Ford automatic in my sons Mustang in 2000. But then C&D or motortrend stated that on one of their long term reports on one of their VW said the 1.8 burned oil like a rotery and VW told them it was normal. Just picturing a cheep entry level sub compact from VW gives one the creeps thinking about all the dealings you can have with some of the worst service represenitives in the free world.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Posts: 5,525
    The 1.8T is bad. It might be the age (3-5 years/80-10K miles) of the VWs that two of my friends have and I get to experience it regularly but that makes for a really poor excuse considering that the baseline for comparison is my 1998 Accord with ~181K miles. The 1.8T is lacks linearity in power delivery, is unpredictable and has a pronounced turbo lag. That wasn't the case when I first test drove (1998 Passat 1.8T). Perhaps it is the age after all, and I'm glad I didn't buy into the VW turbo hype and went for the more logical choice. Both of these friends have spent a combined ~5K over few months in fixing their cars.

    And the check engine light in one of them is "on", again. This time the dealer says it might be a part of a recall, but who knows? While still paying for these cars, they are both looking into Hondas and Toyotas.

    When 1.8T arrived, it got high marks for improved quality and power and torque. By the time reality struck, it was replaced by 2.0T that is being called improved quality and getting high marks for power and torque... will history repeat itself? I won't bet against it.

    And they suck gas too. Those two cars are averaging only 21-23 mpg when I drive, on premium grade. It doesn't bode well for them when I consider that my Accord is still getting 25-26 mpg, on regular. While the numbers appear to be close, it is like spending 20-25% more on gas. Not something that makes sense in a subcompact.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,578
    Darn, I only paid a bit over $1050.00 to rebuild a Ford automatic in my sons Mustang in 2000.

    The last time I had a transmission rebuilt was back in 1997. It cost $650. It was a Torqueflite in a 1979 Newport. I forget which one it was though...probably the 998A. I have a feeling that if I ever need another tranny rebuilt, I'm in for some serious sticker shock! :sick:
  • wave54wave54 Posts: 209
    Well this YouTube video shows a Smart car crashing into a concrete barrier at about 70mph. The car survived, but would you?


    I wonder how the Chinese look-alike (i.e. blatant rip-off) would do?
    Shuanghuan Noble
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