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2008 Volkswagen Jetta



  • M6user, I drive in mostly rural areas with some city driving, and I constantly get 31 mpg and if I have to go far on freeway, I get 33 mpg. Very pleased with mine.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Thanks roughrider1! That's actually very good mpg...well above the lower range. Would you consider yourself to be a conservative driver?

    I read all the Jetta consumer reviews and some complained about mpg or marked it down a little. Then I read about a lot of clutches going and understanding the demographics of the Jetta market, I add two and two together and decide one might beget the other. I have never had any trouble getting epa estimates on my cars and I would say I'm a pretty average driver. In a hurry sometimes but mostly fairly easy going.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    In the one long trip we took we averaged 31 or 32 mpg on in our 2005.5 with 2.5 ATX, driving on the freeway typically at 70-75 mph. I don't really know what it gets around town, because my wife drives it and unlike me she does not check mpg with every tank.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Thanks. How has your repairs/maint been? Is it true that an oil change is something like $100 even though you might only have to get it changed once a year or so?

    From what I can gather, the engine realiability of the Jetta has improved since they came out with the 2.5 and overall reliability has also improved over the last several years. Would you agree with that?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    We never paid anywhere near $100 for an oil change. Our first one was free and the other two were about $60 or a little less. We have spent $455 on maintenance in 3+ years and 25,000 miles.

    Ours was a pretty early one, bought end of May 2005, I think that was the second or third month for it. So we probably had more issues than average, which we fully expected. Several minor things right away and then strut bearings after 6 months and one bigger item, a transmission repair after one year. These were all under warranty. Oh yeah, and there was a speedometer TSB.

    Also two minor recalls one was to check location of a fuel line or something the other is for to disable certain headlight aiming screws.

    CR now rates the 05-07 as average or above, this is a definite improvement over ratings for the prior versions of the Jetta. The engine gets a lot of red circles (= good reliability) in CRs ratings.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Thanks for info. Sounds a lot like a Buick LaSabre Ltd I had. Loved the car but it really did have a lot of warranty work, mostly minor, some major....a lot like your experience. I know what a hassle it is even if they are picking up the tab. Have things pretty much smoothed out on it now?

    Now the real question.....if you were in the market would you buy a new Jetta? What about the new 2009 TDI?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    In the last 2 years+, since the transmission there was really only the second recall which is a nothing issue. They did not disable certain headlight aiming screws, which apparently cars in the US are not allowed to have by NHTSA. The speedometer was always off, but I became aware of TSB admitting it and giving a fix recently, so that was just done at the last oil change. Previously they had said they could check it but if it was not off, they would have to charge us $50, so we had let it go.

    Oh and they have to replace the truck lifters, the 2005s would lift the trunk lid all the way open when you hit the trunk release button. These had gradually weakened and it would just pop the lock , like most do. So I finally asked them about it at the last oil change. This feature was eliminated, so at first they were in denial, no one knew the truck lid was supposed to go up. They tested another 2005 on the lot and it did not do it (uh, yeah it's broken too :surprise: ). It was not a big deal, I mean it would be a burden ;) , but we could continue to survive with manually lifting the lid. I said something like "if you want to say that this is not something that will be fixed under warranty, fine, but don't try to tell me that it did not ever lift the trunk lid..." Finally they found a district manager who actually remembered that this was a feature in the early ones and agreed to replace next time we want to bring it in. I had also found a video clip someone had made of this feature in action and emailed it to the service manager :) .

    All this sounds like a lot, but really we only made 2 extra trips to the dealer and we did get a free loaner as needed. In fact, during the transmission repair, we got a Mazda6 loaner, so it was kind of nice as I got an extended test drive and my wife drove our other vehicle. The first extra trip was when it was new and had to go for the recall, which was a minor thing except it said a fire could possibly start and we had 4-5 other minor items, anyway. The second extra trip was for the strut bearings, which were making strange noises they were replaced with a redesigned part. Including normal maintenance we have had it in 6 times in 3 years+. My Mazda6, because of their 4 month oil change requirement, has been in 5 times in 1.5 years.

    My wife would buy another and I would be fine with that. She loves the car. The transmission needing repair is the only item that would cause me much concern, but transmission issues have not been common on these so I would not let it prevent us from getting another. I like my Mazda6 better, it is just slightly more comfortable for me mainly because the steering wheel telescopes further out.

    But do like some things about her car more...the extendable sun visors, driver's arm rest for right arm, her automatic transmission is smoother than Mazda's, her A/C is better, her windshield washer system is better, her car is better in snow or even wet as she has ESP (stability control) plus I think her tires are more truely all-seasonish. Hers also had better IIHS crash test results.

    You may already know this, but the current models have 4 year/50K mi bumper to bumper warranty, next year I think that drops to 3 years/36K mi and they add free maintenance for those 3 years.

    Diesel mpg would be nice, even though often offset somewhat by the higher price of the fuel. OTOH, we do not drive all that much and don't like the idea of taking longer to get heat in winter. We would probably at least drive it and do the math on fuel savings vs. higher initial cost. I guess diesel engines are also supposed to be more durable, but since we would probably only hit 100K mi in about 12 years that is not a big consideration.

    What would intrigue me more is if they would make the DSG transmission available in the lower priced trim levels of the Jetta and Rabbit.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Thanks again for the copious notes. I've had my Mazda6 for about 10 months and it's been back to the dealer twice--both for oil changes and a bracket on one of the tailpipes came loose and they refastened it...very, very minor really. Has been an excellent car and it was originally for me but my wife has taken it over and I drive it rarely now. Hence I'm looking at another car for me. Oh what a chore(ha ha). The three I'm looking at are the Jetta, Sonata and the new Mazda6. Obviously I have to wait another 5-6 weeks to really look at the new Mazda6 and I'm sure prices on that will be high until at least January or so. If it really is popular and is as nice as it seems on paper I may just have to bite the bullet and pay top dollar. It's a shame because as you well know, the price we paid for the current Mazda6 was a steal in my opinion.

    I feel pretty much the same with TDI....I don't think I would drive enough miles a year to really justify the extra expense up front. Anyway, is the new 3/36 warranty with free service on the Jetta worth it or would you rather have the comfort level of that fourth year? I guess I would lean towards a little better price on the 08 and the longer warranty. I also have to time my purchase because if I wait too long for the Mazda6, the supply of 08 Jettas may become pretty depleted. What do you think?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    Yep, I always like to point out to my wife that the Mazda6 cost us $3K less than the Jetta :) . I doubt that'll be the case with the new '09 at least for a while.

    I don't know, the warranty vs. free service is kind of a toss-up to me, since they still have 5 year/60 K mi on the powertrain. I felt the same way with the Mazda6 which went from 4 years to 3 on the bumper to bumper but added a 5 year power train warranty. The price difference between a leftover '08 vs. new '09 would likely be a bigger factor to me.

    If you know what you want, you could try to find out how many are around. When my wife got hers she knew exactly what she wanted, had to be the right color and trim level. I checked on-line inventory of dealers to find out there were very few within 100 miles, so we took what seemed like a good deal on one when offered. But she had also already narrowed it down to just the Jetta, there was no new car we were waiting to see...actually the Jetta was the new one that we had waited for, but it had come out early, like March.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Good advice. Thanks again.
  • I consider myself a conservative driver about 90% of the time! Wife can't get that kind of mileage though, she gets about 29.
  • scottinkyscottinky Posts: 194
    i would rather have the warranty. since our VW dealer advises 10k oil changes,
    that's once a year service for what, $70-80? warranty covers BIG items if they
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    What about tire rotations? Is there no 15,000 or 30,000 required maint that could add a fair amount of money? I would lean towards the extra year as well unless I could save a lot on these types of charges.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    No, VW does 10K, 20K, 30K , 40K.

    There is a tire rotation every 10,000 miles ($20?), cabin air filter change at 20K (~$50), brake fluid change at 24 mo ($90). So, assuming all is included, I'd guess savings of ~$500. (We spent $450 in 3 years, 25K mi and had one free oil change in there)

    The bigger service is at 40K mi, where spark plugs and air filter replacement is required.

    I wonder how the manufacturer payiing only for10K mi between oil changes is going to sit with dealers that try to convince folks that they should pay for a synthetic oil change every 3 mo. or 5K mi?
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Wow. Plugs at 40,000. Haven't heard of a manufacturer asking for plug changes that early in a long time. Most seem to be going towards 100,000 or so. What's up with that?

    Not that I think it's bad but haven't heard of many manufacturers requiring a brake fluid change either that early or at all. I do think it could save some money on the ABS system down the road though.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    Mercedes has always required brake fluid changes at 24 month intervals. Still true on our '08 C300.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,174
    Maybe it's a German automaker thing. Do they use some real different kind of brake fluid or brake system parts which would make it necessary or do they just feel that's a good preventive maint thing to do?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    Not sure why 40K for plugs. There is also a time factor of 4 years, which for us will be maybe about 32k mi. Meanwhile they say no routine changes of automatic transmission fluid are needed.

    I would not wait 100K (that'd be 10-12 years for us), even if that is specified. I go about 6 years normally, just because I had heard that waiting to long can create problems with actually removing the old plugs.

    I think Honda has three year brake fluid changes. Mazda says 2 years, but only in Mexico :confuse: . Where it is not specified (or after warranty) I plan to do it at about a three year/25,000 mile interval in future. I think this will mean one complete change between brake jobs and then one when brakes are done. I've also decided to periodically change power steering fluid in future (not on the Jetta, as it has none).

    I am still undecided about automatic transmission fluid which now supposedly lasts forever. I figure I'll re-research this issue when we get to about 80,000 miles.
  • scottinkyscottinky Posts: 194
    tire stores that rotate for free with a service. I can bring them a filter and VW
    spec oil, and they will change it. As well as using some excellent german
    indy shops for maintenance. WAY cheaper than the dealer.
  • You are so not the only one - here in New Mexico, there is only 1 yes 1 dealership and they are horrible. From the salesman to the owner to the mechanics, they all leave little to be desired. They don't even know the product they are selling, I knew more about the car I wanted and test drove than he did. I ended up driving 640 miles round trip to Lubbock to get mine........good luck!
  • retta75retta75 Posts: 5
    Hey everyone,
    I'm picking up my new 2008 city Jetta tomorrow, fully loaded (except for the cold weather package) and the salesguy said the latest ones that have come in have 16" wheels with different rims. Since I'm not totally crazy about what's on there now (online brochure shows 15" 5 spoke wheels) he said I'll definitely like the 16" wheels better. I found a site with the 2008 city Jetta specs and with the comfort package (which I got) it shows 6.5.J X 16'' alloy wheels "Las Vegas". Anyone know anything about this? I'm just curious as to what they might look like but I haven't been able to find any pictures. Thanks! ;)
  • topgun7topgun7 Posts: 412
    Anyone purchased or leased an 09 Station wagon? How do you like it? What is the pro and con of the stateion wagon compare to the sedan? I am thinking about getting one instead of a compact CUV and wonder how does Jetta SW compare to a CRV or RAV4?
  • anyone know how the Jetta Sportswagen or for that matter any of the VW's will hold up on rough roads? Also how comfortable will they be? We live 4 miles down a dirt road in the mountains and need something sturdy that will 'take a beat'n and keep on tickin' :) wish a Timex would drive! Thanks!
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    hi folks,today i took a 08 jetta S model with 5sp out for a test drive...about 4 miles into the test drive i noticed some condensation dripping down from the ac vents onto the console below....the salesmen who was with me also noticed this as well..
    he said that the condensation was probably due in part to the a/c working nice and cold and that i should not worry about the way,the condensation was dripping into the radio area as well....i found the salesmens response as [non-permissible content removed] and returned to the dealership...this test drive was over for me as far as i was i also factored in the premature rear brake failure that alot of people on this website seem to be haveing....hello honda civic.......
  • ndmike88ndmike88 Posts: 155
    Don't blame you one bit. I would have walked away also. That being said we have had our Wolf Jetta almost 2 weeks already. I can't find a single thing wrong with ours.
    If I were you, before I looked at a Honda Civic I would give VW one more chance. You might find that the one you drove was a bad one that got through. For every bad one that gets through they build 99 that are great.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    your right mike,i think i will try another vw dealer before i commit to the civic....
    i really like the standard safety features that the jetta offers but i just don't want to get stuck with a problematic car given the jetta's past reliability issues..ive been reading the owners reviews on this site for the model years 05-08 jetta and it seems there are alot of premature brake wear with the jetta with under 20,000 miles...on the rear if i mentioned the brake issues to the salesmen who is trying to sell me the car he would probably say something like oh no the brakes are just fine don't worry about it...........steve
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Any more owners of the '08+ Jetta SportWagen? I just found out about this model on VW's website and am interested. My wife has an '04 Subaru Forester which has been the worst car we have ever owned. We both love manual trannies and the SportWagen is the only vehicle that comes close to the Forester in having a manual tranny option, in size, in capacity and in fuel economy. But, we don't want to buy another lemon car. I'm happy to see too that VW has eschewed the usual small displacement turbo on the S and SE trims; no way I'm pumping premium gas. Thanks for any SportWagen thoughts anyone has.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    asa,i would think twice before deciding on a jetta,be it a wagon or otherwise....i have been doing my research on the model years 05-08 jetta models by reading the owners reviews for those cars on this website.....many problems still continue in the jetta tradition such as premature brake wear on the rear brakes within 20,000 miles,electrical problems, in my opinion you would be going from worse with your subaru forrester to much worse with the jetta...don't take my word for it just read the owners reviews on this site...good luck....
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Thanks for the heads up -- I'll look here and at some forums. We stopped by the dealer yesterday and they had no SportWagens, but did have a sedan. The build quality was impressive, but I guess there's more to the story. Thanks.
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    yes you have heard the old phrase don't judge a book by it's cover,well that definitly holds true with the jetta..infact,i was watching a video review of the 08 jetta on you tube by the guys at car and driver....they said that they don't recomend a purchase of a jetta unless you also get a extended warranty...that leasing one is the way to go incase you get stuck with a bad one....they also went on to say that if you purchase a jetta most likely you will experience mechanical and electrical breakdowns soon as the warranty expires....
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