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Volkswagen Jetta 2005 and earlier

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  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    45 new messages?

    You guys have been busy!
  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    "2. Buy 15" wheels and tires (as suggested some 400 messages ago)? If so, what are the benefits of smaller tires in the snow?"

    I'd choose this option. You can have dedicated snows, the cost is less, and you can do it yourself as the season dictates. You can even switch to non-snows for a long trip if you know it will be dry roads...

    Plus, there is probably more variety of tires in 15". You'll also get longer lifespan out of your tires.
  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    Oh yeah, you don't drive fast in snow anyhow, so any performance "gain" would not be apparent with sticking (or not, pun intended) to 17" tires.
  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    "What part of the country are you in and how much snow do you normally get there?
    Normal avg. here is 6-18 in. plus ice."

    Here in Taxachusetts,(http://www.smallgovernmentact.org), we can sometimes see twice that in a single storm!
  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    I'd say go with a used S10 pickup or Ford Ranger or other small pickup truck.

    Get 2WD, and the 4.3 motor, smaller motor if you are worried about gas efficiency.

    Don't worry about body, but make sure good mechanicals.

    If you are in snow country DON'T SKIMP, GET GOOD SNOW TIRES. Also, get a locking rear differential. This will be as good as 4X4 for way less money.

    You will be happy with the performance, you can move your stuff around, and you might be able to use it to make some money on the side (moving people, landscaping, odd jobs, etc.).

    Good luck.
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    Thinner width snow tires "slice" through the snow and slush and make contact with pavement better than wider tires.

    Visualize a sharp knife versus a dull knife
  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    If only the VW Jetta turbo had RWD....

    sigh...
  • venus537venus537 Posts: 1,443
    "I went downstairs and stuffed a drain plug in the condensation drain tube. Problem fixed"

    that was not a nice thing to do. you're a meanie.
  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    #7262 of 7271 First Cars by ferricfoot

    Now, looking at it from a kid point of view, for the same money as a Jetta, couldn't the folks get junior a Miata? On the coolness scale, I'd say that the ragtop is a lot cooler than the sedan! Or even the Rab..., uh, Cabrio?! That might also be cooler than the Jetta.

    ---------------
    #7263 of 7271 ferric by blueguydotcom

    My feelings on cars and kids: you want a car, earn the money and buy it yourself. :) It's what I did and I strongly believe in that concept.
    ...


    Cool? Get the kid a Jeep or a VW Thing.

    Best idea? UMass had free (to local residents, not to taxpayers of Taxachusetts) buses around the 5 college area.
  • 2. Buy 15" wheels and tires (as suggested some 400 messages ago)? If so, what are the benefits of smaller tires in the snow?"

    I'd choose this option. You can have dedicated snows, the cost is less, and you can do it yourself as the season dictates. You can even switch to non-snows for a long trip if you know it will be dry roads...


    You want smaller 15" (steel) rims in the winter so you have more sidewall to absorb the impact of all the potholes. 17" wheels don't last long in the winter in my part of the world. (Northern New England) If you happen to live in a part of the world blessed with good road surfaces, 17" wheels with all-season radials should work fairly well for occasional snow driving.

    It's also better to run a width no wider than a 195 on a VW in the winter. On a slippery surface, it's the downforce per square inch that gives you the traction so you're trying to minimize the amount of tread on the road. A wider tire will work OK but you'll be giving up some traction.

    All in all, a VW is a great snow car and it'll get you there in the snow with performance 17" tires as long as you drive cautiously and avoid driving when there's more than 6" of unplowed muck on the road. I run Nokian Hakka Q's on 15" steel wheels in the winter but that's because I frequently see rain to ice to snow transitions where the new generation high tech studless snow/ice tires work best.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    When I slit my right front tire on the curb about 2 months ago, I called VW Roadside assistance. It took the truck 3 HOURS to get to me. I was at my friend's house, so I didn't care, but still.

    I figured I would lift the car myself and do the tire swap this time, but didn't realize the standard jack was so complicated. I am glad that woman came by and let me use her big jack.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I know what you mean about buying a car yourself. You will have more respect for it. I used to beat the crap out of my mom's car when I drove it, because it wasn't mine (I did buy her one to replace the one I beat into the ground though). I have had like 5 cars in the past 5 years, all paid for by myself. I appreciate them more that way. :)
  • geoffd1geoffd1 Posts: 21
    When I slit my right front tire on the curb about 2 months ago, I called VW Roadside assistance. It took the truck 3 HOURS to get to me. I was at my friend's house, so I didn't care, but still.

    I haven't used it but I thought VW roadside was actually AAA? The quality of AAA depends 100% on the luck of the draw on the local garage. I've had them no-show. I've had them show up in 5 minutes and do a really good job.

    I figured I would lift the car myself and do the tire swap this time, but didn't realize the standard jack was so complicated. I am glad that woman came by and let me use her big jack.

    I got a flat when my GTI was a week or two old. I had to read the stinkin' manual but the jack worked well enough to do the job. I couldn't get anybody to pull off my snowtires last spring so I went to WalMart, bought a floor jack, and changed the steel wheels and snowtires out in their parking lot.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    The reason it took so long was because the tow truck driver got lost or something, he said. I realize the roadside assistance is only AAA, but I still had to wait 3 hours. :) I am glad it's free, because if I paid for AAA and still had to wait for 3 hours, I would have been a little upset.

    I am thinking about investing in a floor jack, as to not have to worry about using the jack that came with the car. I never thought it would matter really, since I don't do my own maintenance or anything like that. But, with my luck with tires, it seems almost appropriate to buy one of those jacks. :)

    To their credit, I love the way VW lays out the compartment for the spare and tools. Very nice. The jack seems more complicated than the ones I used with the Proteges (99 and 01) that I had.
  • AnakinAnakin Posts: 410
    I used the jack when I got my aftermarket wheels, and I don't remember it being complicated.

    My wife says I'm really good with mechanical things, but I think that's only because she can't tell a phillips head from a straightedge.
  • anonymous02anonymous02 Posts: 1,538
    "...VW roadside was actually AAA? The quality of AAA depends 100% on the luck of the draw on the local garage. I've had them no-show. I've had them show up in 5 minutes and do a really good job."

    Which is why you should report them to AAA. If they get enough reports, they will not carry that garage any longer. It really does work to complain to the right people you know.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I should know that more than anyone here. :)

    As far as the jack, it just seemed like it was difficult to get under the car. Of course, it was hot as hell and dark when I was trying to do this, so I was not in the most cooperative of moods. :)
  • I need some help - a friend of mine is deciding between a 1992 Jetta w/ 103K miles on it, current owner has only had it 2 months and there are no service records available and a 1991 Geo metro, 42K miles, all service records available, owned by one little old lady. Price is the same for both: $2,000.

    I have been reading a lot about fuel pump problems on older Jettas...and I wonder if the guy selling this one smells a problem coming. My friend is a 52 year old woman, and she is single.... so she has no one around to give her a straight opinion. she has called 2 mechanics and they disagree.
  • ashutoshsmashutoshsm Posts: 1,007
    May sound surprising, but for an older VW, she will end up spending a lot of money, time and trouble keeping it in good running shape. The Geo will handle abuse better, provided it has been taken care of well (having all records is a big plus). Chekc to see if it has remained parked and entirely unused for any extended periods of time - that could be detrimental. If the oil changes and service intervals are approximately equally spaced out, its been used as a low mileage but regular use car.

    Then again, numerous short trips play havoc with a car's transmission. It is really a toss up - have them both inspected by mechanics before you decide. (as opposed to just calling the mechanics and asking their opinion!)

    But at that price point ($2K) she can't go wrong with the Geo. Possibilities
    a. Very carefully maintained, no problems, continues to provide great service - great!
    b. If problems crop up, they can't be major (assuming no major repairs were previously needed and the inspection checks out ok), and will cost MUCH less to repair and take care of than the Jetta.
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