GOLF GLS 1.8T vs. GTI GLS 1.8T

sentra20sersentra20ser Member Posts: 68
edited April 2014 in Volkswagen
I'm looking at buying VW hatchback with the 1.8T
motor. I'm wondering if you could help tell me
what the difference is with them of them and how
you have liked yours.


  • sentra20sersentra20ser Member Posts: 68
    I'm looking at buying VW hatchback with the 1.8T
    motor. I'm wondering if you could help tell me
    what the difference is with each of them and how
    you have liked yours.
  • judasjudas Member Posts: 217
    I'd lean towards the Golf, but for a couple reasons that might not apply to you. 1)the Golf is cheaper 2)Weight difference is negligible so it's just as quick 3)The money you save by getting the Golf you can throw into the suspension and come out a lot better than the GTI with the sport suspension 4)Nobody expects a little 4 door hatch to be quick, agile or fast.
  • cinemafiacinemafia Member Posts: 57
    I have the same dilema, but I'd definitely go for the Golf GLS. here's some pros and cons:

    GOLF GLS pros:
    1 four doors
    2 lower insurance insurance rates
    3 greater passenger comfort and cargo capacity
    4 more of the "sleeper" look, that is, same performance (more or less) as the GTI GLS but in a less obvious package

    GTI GLS cons:
    1 cannot get nifty GTI paint colors, Futura Yellow, Cosmic Green and Tropic Orange
    2 cannot get leather interior
    3 cannot get sporty (and inexpensive) cloth interior
    4 soft suspension
  • qualequale Member Posts: 5
    Either one will be a sleeper to the crowd that drive Corvettes, Twin Turbo RX-7s, and the like. In fact, if you regularly drive one of these poor man supercars, you will fall asleep behind the wheel of a GTI trying to get it up to speed. You're better off tweaking the VW suspension and enjoy driving it in the twisties. In which case, either model will be nice. Mount a used baby seat in the rear in either, and you'll have your stealth!
  • judasjudas Member Posts: 217
    What exactly would compell you to compare a Golf to a TT RX7 or a Vette?
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Member Posts: 210
    Somewhere, someone said that it's a lot more fun driving a slow car fast than driving a fast car slow. I wholeheartedly agree.

    My guess is that the larger part of the 'Corvette' crowd buys the car for the image thing, and much less for performance. You get much more thrill (and driving experience for that matter) from driving a Golf (or Civic) hard than a Corvette will ever allow you on open roads.
    Also, check out how many 'vettes sell with an auto shift. Need I say more?
  • goopgoop Member Posts: 23
    and of course I have to have one... :)

    I love my GTI 1.8t. Really, I do. I take the long way home now, I just get up and go driving around town (when I can find decent roads in this place) and smile all the time.

    They're both sleeper cars... but the feel of my steering wheel with my leather package is incredible. Two doors isn't that bad, actually - the front seats slide forward and it's not to hard to get in and out. My insurance is pretty reasonable, too - just at a grand for more than the state minimums for a year(and I live in Harris County, which is pretty expensive).

    Does the Golf have that much more cargo capacity than the GTI? Pardon my ignorance if this is the case, but I assumed that if they're built on the same chassis and with the same body, interior cargo space will pretty much be identical with the rear seats folded down, eh?

    And yes, it's not a sports car. However, try finding a car that can seat 4 in relative comfort, and that can also carry a full complement of band equipment, has the same interior build quality, and with a chip and some wheel/suspension mods can keep up with and possibly beat anything else in its price range.

    Heck, even stock a 1.8t GTI can do that and still has more functionality than most other cars on the road.

    I spent more than 2 years shopping around for a car (okay, I didn't have the money to take action, but it forced me to do a great deal of research), and I found nothing in the GTI's class. The closest I found was a Civic Si, but they don't make the hatch anymore.

    Oh yeah, did I mention that I love my GTI? :)
  • ramonramon Member Posts: 825
    get the regular golf and money saved get aftermarket suspension and wheels. Look and drives better thant the GTi by then! Don't kid yourself about GTi suspension, if its anything similar to the sports tuned Jetta my friend has, then it's crap. So save your mulah and get the golf. Besides the GTi colours are phugly.
  • goopgoop Member Posts: 23
    The GTI is still lighter, still has some options you can't get on the Golf, and my Flash-pull-me-over-red is beautiful. :)

    I do agree that the sports-tuned suspension is still to wallowy for enthusiasts, but my understanding is that 2001 or 2002 is coming with 17" wheels and a real suspension as an option.

  • mznmzn Member Posts: 727
    Friends, post #8 above has been hidden because it contains a link that skews our screen size. To read it, just click on "hidden." Thanks!

  • abarrabarr Member Posts: 2
    They both have the same interior/cargo space. The huge difference between them was the seats. The GTI's seats are well-bolstered and have fairly grippy fabric while the Golf's have almost no side support. If you drive the two one after the other, it's very obvious. The suspension in the GTI is stiffer, but not nearly enough to be considered a sports car. Now for 2001, the 17" wheels include much sportier tires (Michelin Pilot Sports, I think) which should help. I personally wish I there was a 4-door GTI, but oh well.
  • goopgoop Member Posts: 23
    While 4 doors would come in handy at times, the fact that I have only 2 doors ensures that I rarely have to drive my coworkers to lunch. :) Although since I've gotten the VW, riding in their cars is sooo boring.

    Except for when my old boss raced his 740 against another friend's M3 on the way to work... I drool, excuse me.
  • sentra20sersentra20ser Member Posts: 68
    Looking for info on 1.8T.
  • wukwukwukwuk Member Posts: 17
    could you be just a tad more specific? : ) There's lots of places to get info. Try If you can't find the info you want on 1.8T there, you can't find it anywhere. Hope that helps.
  • sentra20sersentra20ser Member Posts: 68
    GTI or GLS 1.8t?
  • robbinhoodzrobbinhoodz Member Posts: 4
    the edmunds website says that the golfs (including the 4 doors) are made in wolfsburg. the dealer here in oakland california tells me that the jetta is made in mexico, the 4dr golf in brazil and the 2 door golf in germany. can someone tell me really where the 4dr golf is made. i want to buy one, and where it is made is important to me. thanks.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Member Posts: 2,228
    Why would where the car is made be that important?? Just because a car is made in a South American country doesn't mean it is junk! From what I have heard, all Golf production was supposed to move to Brazil for 2001. Maybe they decided to continue making the 2 door in Germany, but I'm not completely sure. All Jettas and Beetles are built in Mexico, whereas all Passats are made in Germany. All 99-2000 Golfs were made in Germany. So, get a 2000 model if you want one built in Germany. All you have to do is look at the identification tag on the driver's door jamb to see where the car was built.
    If you are worried about Brazilian made cars, I know from experience that they are well built cars. I used to own an 87 VW Fox. All Foxes from 87-93 were built in Brazil. My Fox was very reliable and durable, even though it was already 12 years old when I bought it for $550. It ran great, always started the first time and never stalled, didn't rattle, and was very solid. Even after 12 years of brutal Florida sun without any tint, the dashboard looked new and had no cracks on it. It was a great car and I wish I had kept it longer. I only got rid of it because the AC didn't work and I was dealing with 100+ degrees. At the time, it needed a new compressor and I couldn't afford to fix it. Anyway, the car is only assembled in Brazil. All the parts are made in either Mexico or Germany. The engines are always built in Germany. So, I wouldn't worry about buying a car made in Brazil. It shouldn't make any difference where the car is assembled. What matters is who designed and made the parts that make up the car.
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Member Posts: 210
    The location of the plant has no meaning whatsoever on the quality of the car. Otherwise, would you assume that Japanese cars made in the US are worse than the ones made in Japan?
  • thegtiman1thegtiman1 Member Posts: 13
    Some of the metal manufatured in south america is generally of a lower grade. Not all but some. Have you ever put those mexico made brakes on your car only to have them warp in a month? I was also concerned with this. Not because of the people who make up the country but the quality of the materials used. Remember the reason why they are made there is because its cheaper and the way to keep it cheap is to use cheap labor and cheaper parts. Not in every case do they do this, but it is a basic economical business fact.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Member Posts: 2,228
    Saving money is not always the reason for building cars elsewhere. The whole reason VW decided to move Golf production to Brazil is because the German plant is too stressed with the high European demand. The Mexican plant has its hands full with Jetta and Beetle production and VW doesn't want quality to suffer. Since they already had a plant in Brazil, VW decided to totally revamp the plant and make US Golfs there. Problem solved for the German plant with the added benefit of cheaper labor. Most of the parts are not made in the plant itself. They are sourced from other places and than put together to make a car. There was absolutely nothing wrong with my Brazilian made Fox. If it was made of inferior metal, I couldn't tell. The car had only a little surface rust in a few areas where the car was keyed all the way down to the bare metal. The car was amazingly well put together and felt very solid. Its 12 year old original paint held up pretty well, with only some clear coat flaking on the trunk and roof.
  • fetalpunkfetalpunk Member Posts: 1
    Obviously, we don't have economy car afficionados here. Instead, we've got VW marketing pros trying to make their products look good. This forum ought to be about common folk buying a product than common folk can afford. Not propaganda akin to saying that the VW Fox was a great car. What a load of bullsh_it. When's the last time you've seen one on the road. THat's right, they're all in junkyard.

    Funny how some people equate VW with a sensible, economical car from a sensible car company when in fact, Volkswagen is a corporate behemoth that will act just like all the rest in the pursuit of every last Godforsaken dollar.
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Member Posts: 210
    Obviously YOU do fetalpunk!

    First, it's a free enterprise economy (thank God) and it's all companies' duty to make money - lest they are government subsidized (now we wouldn't want that would we?)

    Second, you're in the wrong forum if your focus is on 'economy cars' only. The GTI is by no means an economy car. It appeals to those of us who are willing to put 20 grand (or more) on the table in order to have a well-assembled, smart looking car that's a blast to drive. As simple as that.

    If you want 'economy' - stick to inexpensive Korean, Japanese or American brands who offer just that. There's nothing wrong with 'those' cars, they are just in a different market.

    I am the first to admit that many car owners or potential buyers get a bit too 'brand loyal' in these columns and make statements which they really know nothing about. But hey, that's to be expected when you talk about cars: one of the few material possessions which stirs emotions in many people.

    If you feel charged with some mysterious mission to hunt down 'small sporty and smart' car enthusiasts you are of course in the right column. But maybe you should use your energy somewhere else (SUV columns?) where it would be more productive.

    And by the way, I own a Golf GTI 1.8t (and love it). For the same money, I could get a larger, boring, albeit reliable car. But I don't want one of those. If Alfas were marketed in the US, I'd rather own a 156. Not an economy car either, but truly a car which offers passion for the money. You get what you pay for, and what you get is - at the end of the day - a product of your own free choice.
  • sentra20sersentra20ser Member Posts: 68
    You are on a VW post. Maybe you should find somewhere else to vent.
  • judasjudas Member Posts: 217
    Just because you own a Daewoo is no reason to take your frustrations out on us.
  • thegtiman1thegtiman1 Member Posts: 13
    I believe that people who look at marketing mumbo jumbo get scared that there on the back burner. They dont have a clue what to say so they attack. Anyway people can get carried away with the whole loyalty thing, and can get defensive at times. I LOVE VW's. Ever since I bought my first one I was hooked. The refined handling, the way the transmission shifted. It was a damn fun car to drive through and through. TO ME..... Now my dream car is a 69' Pontiac D port head formula 400 Firebird/transam. I would love to have a Seville STS, or a S55 AMG Benz, or a Skyline.... But it was the affordable (to me) volkswagens that I embrassed.

    I agree all the way, of course VW is a corporate behemouth. But if it wasnt for companies of that nature you would be walking your happy butt around town. You could never afford a hand built car that is not massed produced. But if your in the market of negativity then you get what you pay for. You MR FETALPUNK must have alot of anger built up inside and should drive a car suggested here where you took the liberty to come to, to smile and be happy and forget YOUR propagada whoas. There is nothing to fear of VW you dont have to like them if you dont want to, your but a voice amoung many. And I say good day to you.

    To everyone else. Lets leave where we left off. This was starting to get good, Before the interuption.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Member Posts: 2,228
    I had no idea sharing my good experience with my VW Fox would cause that kind of heated response! I never said it was a great car, just more than I expected for what I paid. I was merely trying to dispell fear of South American made cars. As far as where all the Foxes are, I see quite a few of them on the road in my town.
    As far as brand loyalty, I will be the first to admit that I love VW and plan to continue buying their products. However, I am far from blindly loyal to them. I currently own an 84 Rabbit GTI, an 84 Mazda RX7, and a 2000 Hyundai Accent. I just recently sold a 93 Mitsubishi Diamante. I think you will all agree that I don't blindly limit myself to my love for VW, based on the wide spectrum of car brands I currently own.
  • cinemafiacinemafia Member Posts: 57
    Funny, I live in L.A. which for those of you who live in a cave (and lord help me how you got a computer and internet service in there) is the "car capital of the world", I've seen MUCH more VW Foxes ON the road rather than in junkyards. As a matter of fact, one of my favorite VW shops/parts car lots is Max's German Auto here in Van Nuys where there are a half dozen Cabriolets, a Corrado, a Gti and a handful of Jettas. foxes.

    Yeah, I know the Fox was never the most popular of the VW's, and to date it's known as the least appealing in terms of looks. However, they were just as reliable and useful as Jettas, Rabbits and Cabriolets of the time so I can't for the life of me understand WHY they would all be in the junkyard? Is there some unwritten automotive law that states that unpopular, low-production cars automatically turn to junk? That's some logic for ya.

    At any rate, I'd just like to say that my '89 Cabriolet is running strong and looking good. Some people can't understand why those of us who drive and love VW's at times are even more enthusiastic about them than VW salespeople. We come in many different forms, some of us love air-cooled, some of us water, some are obsessed with A1's, some are just becoming VW fans since their American rebirth in '98. However no matter what we like we are in no way spouters of propaganda, nor "cultist" conformists trying to win our way in the wide world of automotive free thought. We leave that up to the, j/k I'm not trying to flame.
  • silvercoupesilvercoupe Member Posts: 326
    One Rabbit that was not reliable was a 1980 that my brother purchased new. Within the first 40k miles he and I replaced just about everything under the hood except the motor!!! He lost trust in the car and was afraid to venture very far from home with it lest it break down.

    We had both owned several VW Beetles in the past and loved them, even tho they required a lot of maintenance. They were easy to work on and parts were plentiful and cheap.

    After the Rabbit fiasco I began buying Hondas and he went with Toyota and Nissan. We have both been much happier and spent a lot less on repairs in the last 15 years.
  • cinemafiacinemafia Member Posts: 57
    Rabbits are tricky devils, no doubt. Especially models from the late 70's and early 80's require a deal of mechanical proficiency to maintain. However my comment was that Foxes were just as reliable as rabbits, not that rabbits were the most reliable thing under the sun by any stretch.

    Annnnyway, Hondas from the late 70's/early 80's weren't great either, I have my share of horror stories between a '79 Accord my brother owned and an '88 Civic I owned. It just goes to show that blanket statements mean absolutely nothing.
  • cinemafiacinemafia Member Posts: 57
    Hey, at least you DIDN'T have to replace the motor! Which I WOULD have in my 88 Civic if I were any more naive. The engine died one day mysyteriously, and rather than pay the $1700 my mechanic quoted me for a new one and I dumped the bucket for $400 and bought the '89 VW Cabriolet I'm driving now.
  • silvercoupesilvercoupe Member Posts: 326
    What was wrong with the engine in the Civic?

    By and large those were very reliable little cars. I knew a coworker that ran one to 250k miles before he had any major problems. Regular valve adjustments and oil changes were VERY important with all the Honda engines until the early 90's. Also, replacement of the timing belt at 60k mile intervals...
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Member Posts: 2,228
    My Rabbit experience was the complete opposite! My 84 Rabbit GTI has around 200K and is still driven daily as a commuter with the original 15 yr old AC compressor still pumping out cool air. The car always starts the first time, runs smooth, and does not smoke. The only repairs I have had done was the alternator (it was 13 years old and lasted 160K), water pump, fuel pump, a couple of driveshaft seals, and I blew the fifth gear in the tranny (unfortunately a design flaw with all close-ratio VW trannies of the 80s). I can always count on it to get me where I need to go. The main complaints I have with the car is hard to find leaks around the sunroof and hatch and various dash rattles that annoy me at times. The Rabbits with the carburetor were not as reliable as those with the easy to fix K-Jetronic fuel injection. This fuel injection system is the easiest to maintain and is unbelievably reliable.
    As far as reliable Hondas go, the late 70s-late 80s had major problems with headgaskets and overheating. My roommate had a 79 Accord that would overheat constantly, even though he replaced the head and gasket three times over 2 years! We owned an 85 Civic wagon and the same problems occured. It blew its head gasket, smoked horribly, and overheated everyday if you stopped at a stoplight. It was reliable in that it always started, but it did not run good and it only had 130K. Hondas in general tend to be reliable, but they run into headgasket failures and overheating quite often (the older ones at least). These are rare problems in the watercooled VWs.
  • silvercoupesilvercoupe Member Posts: 326
    Looks like you have had just the opposite of my experiences. Guess there are lemons among all makes. I'm sure that the newer VWs and Hondas are all more reliable than the old ones. I have not had any direct experience with VW in over 15 years, so can't say one way or the other about them.

    I do have a relative that ran a 1984 Accord to 240k miles with no serious problems, until he crashed it last September (total loss). Yes, the older Honda's required strict maintenance, which many people ignored. Then they complained when valves burned or timing belts broke.

    Each to his own.
  • ramonramon Member Posts: 825
    Would love to say so. But just scan the maintenance forums and you will see the new model VW dedicated topics about having various build problems. Still waiting for that 4Motion Golf tho.
  • cinemafiacinemafia Member Posts: 57
    We have gotten off topic! How did that happen?


    Yeah so Gti GLS 1.8T vs Golf GLS 1.8T...I would go for the GTi if for the only reason that with the Golf you're stuck with velour seats and I DETEST Velour. I think Velour is to cars what velevt is to paintings. Cheap, common and gaudy. I'll take the inexpensive, easy to maintain, sporty-grip quality of cloth over velour any day. Or, I'll take the shiny, classy look of leather. Both are options in the GTi, neither are on the Golf...
  • ramonramon Member Posts: 825
    what's velour?!
  • cinemafiacinemafia Member Posts: 57
    . . . is the soft, fuzzy, velvety material that's put into the majority of all cars made.
  • ramonramon Member Posts: 825
    oh you mean rental cars.... =) I gotcha. Yuck! I hate 'em too. I think Civic has 'em too.
  • silvercoupesilvercoupe Member Posts: 326
    Sorry for getting you guys off topic. Back to the Honda BB for me.
  • kurtb1kurtb1 Member Posts: 6
    I have two questions. I own a new 1.8t GLS and I'm noticing yellow goop leaking out of my doors and collecting on the bottom of the frame. What is that stuff? It's easy enough to clean but what is leaking out of my doors?

    Also, I heard 3500 workers walked out on strike at the Mexico VW plant, were Jettas and New Beetles are assembled. A friend of mine was thinking about a Jetta but she might not have much of a selection now. Has anyone heard an update on that strike?

    Drive safe.
  • alfaromeoalfaromeo Member Posts: 210
    Yellow goop:
    I can't guarantee that's what it is... but read your owners' manual and you will see a paragraph which mentions a protective sealant that VW uses and on new cars, it may 'bubble' or in your case leak. Completely harmless, and really just proof that VW takes corrosion seriously.
    But if you feel nervous about it, I'd still check with your dealership. It may be something else... (I hope not)
  • retep1retep1 Member Posts: 1
    Anyone know roughly what I can expect to pay for a 2001 GLS 1.8T? Also, is it as good a car as I have read in the reviews? I think it is, but I have not actually driven one yet
  • gtiman1gtiman1 Member Posts: 4
    Go and test drive one, you will be pleasantly surprised!
    I paid a little over 20K for my Y2K GLS GTI
    It has Monsoon, factory disc changer and a window tint. Im sure you could get one for less though if you shop around.
  • spiderman4711spiderman4711 Member Posts: 1
    I arrived over here from England and wanted to buy a non-European car..I had a Golf and thought i'd try something I go and pay cash for a Mitsubishi GT with tiptronic..really I must say this has got to be the dumbest decision of my life..therefore to reverse it I am willing to take a huge loss and buy either a GTi 1.8T or VR6...what would you recommend??

    Thx...the stupid Englishman
  • ramonramon Member Posts: 825
    STi 1.8t of course! For modding purposes! =)
  • chrismarchrismar Member Posts: 18
    Well I have a friend that is in love with the Golfs and yesterday we test drove a 2000 GLS 1.8T. It was alot of fun! She couldn't stop smiling. It accelerates very well! Now she can't wait till next month to buy her Golf! Shes thinking about a GTi also, they had a black one on the lot for 19,700 not too bad :)
  • alpanianalpanian Member Posts: 9
    Since I am looking at buying a Golf 1.8T I was wondering about the engine's reliability? Have there been any major problems? Also, I was told earlier that the Turbo would have to be replaced after about 60K or so. Is this true? Is this covered in the 10yr/100K powertrain warranty?

    I really want a 4 door but I love those cloth seats. I Hate the soft couch like seats they put in the 4 door and in all American cars. Why can't we just get the same seats as they do in Europe?
  • alpanianalpanian Member Posts: 9
    Nevermind the warranty. Mostly I woul like to know what kind of life expectancy to expect from the Turbocharger. I am thinking of buying, not leasing, and I would like to drive the car to 80K-100K.
  • vwguildvwguild Member Posts: 1,620
    I am not sure that I understand what you are asking...The 10 year/100,000 mile Powertrain
    Factory Warranty covers the Turbocharger...
    What do you mean by "nevermind the warranty"?
  • mnnmnn Member Posts: 31
    I have been browsing the vwvortex site and discovered that there has been a widespread of Diverter valve (DV) failure with the turbo. Apparently this happens to both stock and MOD 1.8T alike. Does anyone in this forum have such experience??
    Reading that site makes me really paranoid, it seems that the phenomenon is happening like a epidemic. As described, if the DV fails, it is supposed to give a "honking" noise (some refers it to be similar to blowing over a coke bottle), and particularly audible in 2nd and 3rd gear.

    Now, call me deaf or otherwise, how can I distinguish a "turbo sound" from a "honking" sound?? Can anyone maybe give me a better explanation since those guys in vwvortex seem to speak in tongues.

    I am just so worried that my baby might have got the DV syndrome that I am too deaf to know. Help anyone?
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