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VW New Beetle (GL, GLS & GLX)



  • Hey libertycat, that color is cyan purple and it is cool looking. Vw waranties their paint jobs for 10years. I asked the manager at VW how much it was and he said A LOT.

    I just bought a 2003 2.0L GLS Blue Lagoon Beetle which dispels the previous messages saying that
    Blue Lagoon was going away and the 2.0L was going away.
    Anyway, after the car has sat off for a while and I open the door, I hear an electric motor sound coming from the inside running for a few seconds and stop. I have heard a sound like this before in a Cadillac which was a leveling motor airing up shocks but I don't know what this is. Does anyone have a clue what this could be? If I close the door and open it again it will NOT do it again till I let it sit for a while.
    So far I love my car but it only has 200 miles on it.
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    That sound you hear is normal. I have a 2002 Jetta and I believe it is the fuel pump. Some will correct me if I'm wrong.
  • adg44adg44 Posts: 385
    It's the fuel pump priming.... normal.

    - Anthony
  • ashburn1ashburn1 Posts: 1
    Don't like what I have been reading about electrical/engine problems with the beetle, yet really want to own one. Has the '03 taken care of some of these problems? All I can afford is a GL, no options, for the '03. Any 2000-02's that don't have the above problems? I'm a spoiled Corolla owner ('89), boo hooing that I have to give up my baby but alas. . . interior finally leaks too much to repair the rest of the problems. Did drive the beetle once and loved it! Just not willing to put up with electrical problems. And if the beetle doesn' t cut it, any other suggestions? Need to know any advice/info asap as brakes and front end problems are looming over me. Need something new quick!!!!
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    You may want to compare TSB's (technical service bulletins) and recalls for 2000-2003 VW New Beetles in Edmunds' Maintenance Guide. Also, be sure to check out the Consumer Ratings Section in our New and Used Vehicle Pricing Guides.

    Lastly, this is a question you may want to also ask someone in the service department at your local VW dealership. Others here may have more to add.... Good luck, and please let us know what you decide. Happy shopping!

    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • mposh372mposh372 Posts: 4
    (beetlenooz + others),(I posted a similar message under another discussion topic but it looks like I should have posted it here). My 2000 GLS (currently 55,000 miles) was consuming about 1/2 to 1 quart for 1000 miles. After having the dealer monitor it for about a year, they agreed to replace the rings under the 100,000 powertrain warranty. For anyone having the problem, I recommend having the dealer monitor the consumption (don't top it off yourself!)
  • dinger2bdinger2b Posts: 7
    Just curious but has anyone heard if VW was going to upgrade the radio in the New Beetle to handle a CD instead of a cassette? I understand that you can get a trunk mounted changer but that is a pain and really cassettes will soon be in the same category as 8-tracks. I also know that there are after market radios/stereo players but none come with the cool color scheme that VW uses, at least not to the extent that VW does. I think that the New Beetle is the only VW offering that has a cassette as the standard. Thanks in advance.
  • rjustrjust Posts: 1
    Just bought my daughter a 2000 GLX, had the ignition imobilization everyone is talking about at the first gas station I stopped at, but that is not the big problem. 200 miles later it experiences what I beleive was a blown head gasket (gray/white smoke out exhaust followed by check engine light followed by hight temp light). Car just has 60,000 miles! Dealer is saying it is a water pump problem, but I have never known a water pump failure to cause water to get into the combustion chamber and out the tail pipe. Anyone with similar experiences before I let the dealer start doing work on what I beleive to be the wrong system??
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,042
    rjust, you might check in the VW New Beetle (Problems & Solutions) discussion, or check on the Maintenance & Repair for advice.

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  • szotszot Posts: 1
    I bought my 2002 GL in October of 2002, so its a little over a year old now w/ 8500 miles. No problems, man. The oil does not burn away and the electric windows work reliably so far. VW even increased the warranty on the electric windows to 7 years.

    I don't have anything bad to say about the New Bug. I used to own a couple of VWs in my youth, and while they were good, cheap and reliable, the New Beetle is all that, and a very much improved vehicle. When I'm going 80 on the expressway, it feels rock solid and even has a little more in reserve. I paid $17,200; out the door; that included freight, tag, tax & everything.

    Ask me in another 90,000 if I really got a good deal, but right now, I'm thinking that I did.
  • themanxthemanx Posts: 110
    My daughter is wanted a 04 GL Beetle.. but I have read alot about their reliability issues.

    Can any VW owners comment one way or the other?

    I see their warranty is a little better than other
    car makers.


  • I just traded in my 2001 Beetle with 42,000 miles on it for a 2004 Beetle Convertible Gls turbo. I just had a few minor problems and all were taken care of by the dealer. I totally recommend it, I love car so much it is so much fun. Just make sure you get a dealer with good customer service, you will be their more than you will like.
  • My '99 is five years old, and though it has relatively few miles on it (30K), I have had absolutely no problems. Been back to the dealer only for scheduled maintenance. In my opinion, the audio system is poor, but beyond that the car has been great.

    My sister, on the other hand, has a 2001 GL, and says she loves driving the car but will never buy another (it's already had two brake jobs in 45,000 miles, and she had lots of problems with the electrical system).

    That said, I'm thinking of trading mine in for a new Subaru Forester XT, mainly due to a change in lifestyle--I've moved to a house on a dirt road, and the NB has virtually no road clearance--not a pretty sight in the winter.

    MY QUESTION: Anyone heard of or dealt with a site called Galves? They seem to be the site of choice for dealers, and allegedly (or at least according to the dealer) their trade-in prices for the 99 NB are 3k lower than Edmund's.
  • zmanzman Posts: 200
    Happy New Year!

    Hey you VW NB 1.8 turbo (GLS or GLX)folks out there. How do you like your cars? Anyone got one in a 5-speed? Can you recommend these new buggies even with their less-than-stellar reliability issues?

    I note from the previous entry that the audio is no good. True?

    How's the gas mileage?
  • Hey guys - My sister currently owns a 98 Eagle Talon (POS) with nearly 100K on the odometer. She's looking at a White 2000 Beetle GLS with 32K on it. It has heated black leather seats, pw, pl, and is a stick. BTW it's the 2.slow. The dealer is asking $10K even for it. According to Edmunds and other sites, it's a decent deal. What do you guys think? Besides the plastic retainers in the windows and the oil consumption, are there any more common problems with the Bug that I should know about?

    Any response will be much appreciated!

  • Well, she bought that 2000 Beetle. She says it's in pretty good shape (she lives in another state, so I haven't seen it). I was checking out the reccommended service for the 2.0 engine on Edmunds. I noticed that at 40K miles it says "CHECK/PURGE OBD COMPUTER". Are you kidding me? I may just be used to my American car, which doesn't need hard-core service for 100K miles, but that sounds ridiculous. What do they perform in this type of service and how much does it cost. What happens if she doesn't get this done?

    Thanks in advance!

  • I purchased a used 2001 New Beetle 1.8T with 40K miles last year to the date. I told myself that I would hold off on writing a review until either a year passed or something went wrong. You guessed it; NOTHING has gone wrong.

    When I first purchased Moxie (oh, that's her name by the way), I was a bit apprehensive because she was standard transmission and I'd never driven stick. After about two weeks of nervous driving I finally found the "sweet spot" and Moxie has been purring like a kitten since.

    If you want a hatchback that's completely functional and has an impressive form to boot, the VW New Beetle is it. Some may think that the Beetle has "worn off" its novelty factor -- which it has-- but it hasn't worn off its poetic artistry. Most cars are boxy or some variation thereof. The Beetle is 100% graceful curves! You'll have to remind yourself you're an adult just so you can resist hugging her! Ok, that may be a bit cheesy, so let's get to substance: Just today I had to navigate a sharp turn into a tiny parking space at my overcrowded campus and Moxie's snub little nose and compact design zipped in without needing to maneuver back and forth to find a fit. Very rarely do I find a parking space too small. Try that with an SUV! Another advantage of this car is gas mileage. I took a trip from Austin, TX to San Francisco, CA and only gassed up 6 times-- ROUND TRIP (with lots of driving around town). I'm not one to gauge the exact mile per gallon, but I made the same trip with my old Jeep Cherokee last year and had to gas up more than 10 times.

    The interior is just as impressive. I'm 6' tall and my boyfriend is 6'4" (plus 310 lbs!) and we ease in and out of the seats. Granted, the back seat is not as amazing but I've been told by my friends that they find it comfortable. Of course, they're a bunch of shorties! Headroom in the New Beetle is more than ample. The seats are ultra-comfy and supportive.

    All in all, the New Beetle is definitely the hatchback for those who can dig it. When you meet another Beetle (or VW) person, you can feel it. Kind of like Mac vs PC (but that's an entirely different topic!). Not that we VW people are better than everyone else-- we just groove to a different beat. And we love every minute of it. ;)

    P.S. If you can swing it, go for the leatherette package with moonroof and seat heaters. You'll feel like a queen (or king!)

    P.P.S. Did I mention that the 1.8T is amazingly fast?! The greatest part is that I've yet to get anything above a warning when pulled over because cops seem to excuse the terrible cuteness of the Beetle. BUT I'M NOT ADVOCATING SPEEDING. That would be bad. ;)
  • Glad you like the Vee-dub. Have fun!

  • I bought a 98 beetle about 2 years ago with only 15k original miles. The first problem we had was the pass. side power window failed. Fortunately it was repaired under warranty. Then we had to replace the power window buttons. Next the "check engine" light came on which turned out to be minor, but expensive-the glow plug needed replaced. It cost $300! Now about 2 months later the "check engine" light came on again. I'm afraid to take it back for fear of another costly repair. The car now has only 50k miles. I've always owned Toyotas or Mazdas and NEVER had to take them in for faulty equipment or costly repairs. The one good thing I can say is it gets 42 miles/gal city and around 50 miles/gal hwy. I'm contemplating selling it.
  • I've had my check engine light fixed twice on my 2000 Beetle. At least you get great gas mileage; mine is a Turbo and gets lousy mileage with Premium gas. I am planning to sell mine this Spring. I've already replaced this car with a new Matrix.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    $ 300 for a glow plug? Come on! I own a Mercedes 300 SD with a 5 cylinder turbo diesel and all five glow plugs and the glow plug relay together, when bought at retail prices from a Mercedes dealer are less than $ 300. And the relay is by far the most expensive part. I recently bought the relay and all five glow plugs from an aftermarket company for $ 95! And these are brand name German parts, the same Mercedes dealers sell. By the way, glow plugs are easy to replace, just like the spark plugs, and replacing the relay takes a few minutes on my Mercedes. I can replace all five glow plugs in my Mercedes in about 30 minutes when working slow. Replacing the relay takes about 10 minutes tops. $ 300 is a gigantic rip off for replacing a glow plug (or glow plugs) on a Beetle.
  • I have just bought a 2003 TDI New Beetle, my first VW vehicle and so far I am very pleased with it. I have three dogs and a bike and clearly they do not all fit in the back at the same time. I don't think I can hoist my bike on top of the roof with VW's recommended bike carrier so am considering having a 1 1/4" receiver hitch installed to accommodate a two or three bike carrier such as a Swagman XP. Has anyone any experience of this? Is there enough clearance on a Beetle to avoid bumps etc.?
  • February 16, 2004
    Volkswagen Customer Relations
    3800 Hamlin Road
    Auburn Hills, MI 48326
    To Whom It May Concern:
    Let me tell you that you are dealing with a very upset customer. I have officially decided not to purchase another Volkswagen or foreign vehicle of any kind for the rest of my life. I have experienced nothing positive with your NEW VOLKSWAGEN BEETLE. The best way for me to explain my unhappiness is to do it in a timeline format. Let us begin!

    Date Dealer Comments/Problems Mileage
    at Time of Service (from previous service)

    June 2, 1998 Forest Imports Purchased my first car, a brand new ’98 VW New Beetle GL, VIN# 3VWBB61CXWM013081 with 85 miles. 85
    June 11, 1998 Forest Imports First problem with the vehicle. Only 9 days old. Check ABS light came on. Cause was an electrical malfunction. 230
    July 6, 1998 Forest Imports First recall on the vehicle. Four items replaced due to the recall; air bag wiring, ground wire recall, reposition oil cooler, and electrical malfunction. Also mechanics were having a hard time starting the vehicle. 255
    Sept. 23, 1998 Forest Imports Rear seat head rests were hard to remove in order to enlarge trunk space. Replaced the head rest guides. 1817
    Oct. 15, 1999 Forest Imports First oil change. Performed at 2,253 miles on the vehicle. Rear head rest molding was installed and 5,000 mile maintenance was performed. 2253

    Nov. 2, 1999 Forest Imports Head rests are still giving difficulties. They are stuck. Replaced guides for head rest and performed owed seat repair. 2633
    Feb. 4, 1999 Forest Imports Remote control sometimes wasn’t working properly. Front and rear splash guards were added. 4106
    March 11, 1999 Forest Imports Driver side brake light burned out. Another recall (BV). 5843
    March 30, 1999 Forest Imports No oil found in engine when using the dipstick provided. Cause? Oil leaking? Car was taken for a trip from Addison, IL to Pinckneyville, IL. One-way distance 330 miles. 3-qts. of oil were added for the ride back to Addison, IL. Dealer suggested the car go on an oil consumption test. 6377
    April 14, 1999 Forest Imports Follow-up on oil consumption test. Engine was making a clicking noise. 6901
    May 17, 1999 Forest Imports 10,000 mile maintenance and oil consumption test. 1.5-quarts were added after 350 miles of travel. 8617
    June 7, 1999 Forest Imports Oil consumption test performed. Added .425/qt. at this time. Oil consumption considered normal. Total miles on car were 9,172 miles. Customer feel burning and loosing oil this early is a bad sign. 9172
    July 6, 1999 Forest Imports Oil consumption test performed. No oil added. 9798
    July 24, 1999 Forest Imports Customer unhappy and uncomfortable with vehicle. Dealer offers to purchase vehicle in exchange for the purchase of a new vehicle. Customer elected to lease because of the problems with the first vehicle. New vehicle is a ’99 VW New Beetle GLX; VIN# 3VWDD21C8XM468637 with 125 miles on it. 1998 Beetle traded-in at 10,226 miles.
    1999 Beetle delivered with 125 miles.
    Oct. 11, 1999 Forest Imports Right front headlight inoperable. Driver power window moody. Bulb replaced along with window regulator switch. Replaced broken passenger rear parking light lens. 2859
    Dec. 20, 1999 Forest Imports 5,000 mile service. Rear hatch (trunk) will not open at times with the remote. Dealer performed TSB 5559 to correct problem. 5243
    March 30, 2000 Forest Imports 10,000 mile service. 10,255
    Aug. 28, 2000 Forest Imports Check engine light came on. Loose ground wire on battery. 13,581
    Aug. 31, 2000 Forest Imports Replaced front license plate bracket broken by dealer. Brake light switch was replaced. 13,712
    Oct. 14, 2000 Forest Imports 57 point inspection with oil change. 14,441
    March 12, 2001 Forest Imports Oil change and oil leaking in front end area. Cylinder head cover and gasket were replaced. 16,825
    Sept. 27, 2001 Larry Roesch Larry Roesch bought out Forest Imports. Oil change and tire rotation. 19,891
    Feb. 11, 2002 Larry Roesch Oil Leak and Oil Change. Replaced gasket set AGAIN! 23,222
    June 17, 2002 Larry Roesch Check engine light came on. Faulty MAF and coolant temperature sensor. 25,018
    Aug. 24, 2002 Larry Roesch Brake fluid flushed and oil changed. 25,781
    Dec. 30, 2002 Larry Roesch Brake light is staying on and won’t shut off. Replaced brake lamp switch. 28,403
    Jan. 2, 2003 Larry Roesch Car in for oil change. Tech noticed rear brakes are @ 10% and recommends replacement of pads and rotors. Service for pads and rotor performed by MIDAS on 1/11/2003 with a LIFETIME WARRANTY. 28,447
    March 7, 2003 Larry Roesch Oil change. 29,632
    Aug. 5, 2003 Larry Roesch Oil change. 32,426
    Nov. 8, 2003 Larry Roesch Passenger headlamp and climate control bulbs are burned out. Recall on brake lamp switch was already replaced once on 12/30/02. 34,388
    Nov. 10, 2003 Larry Roesch Brake pedal not springing back after being pressed. Faulty brake light switch and replaced it. 34,446
    Nov. 28, 2003 Larry Roesch Brake pedal is still giving problems. Internal brake booster binding slightly. Replaced booster assembly, bleed brakes, and road test. One day car rental. Bill was paid by extended warranty. 34,615
    Jan. 5, 2004 Larry Roesch Headlight bulb burned out. 35,245
    Feb. 16, 2004 Larry Roesch Check engine light came on. Dealer called it SES light. Car needs a secondary air pump assembly (cracked housing). Customer requested brake inspection. Fluid level in master cylinder checked. Owner declined repairs because not covered under extended warranty. Cost would be $700-$800. 36,051

    As you can see, I have quite a time line of unhappiness. Only 7 smooth visits out of 35 for both vehicles. That is only 20% of TRUE SATISFACTION!!!! I will definitely never suggest a VW to anyone!
    It would be wonderful if I could just turn this piece of $41+ into the dealer and say keep it per your orders! But I am sure that you would not dare to make a customer happy. I have this car until 7/24/2004 and I plan on turning it in by that time. You have definitely lost two customers; my husband and I.
    I have enclosed copies of all the paperwork that I have received from the dealer every time I picked up my vehicle. “Seeing is believing.” I have only 4 more payments on this lease. I feel the car is not even worth the amount I still owe!

    After mailing the above 6 page letter to VW of America, they finally called me on 3/2/04 at work just to say that, "because the vehicle is leased and out of warranty that there is nothing they can do." And again for ? time the check engine light came on again after talking to VW of America earlier in the day.

    Any ideas????
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    I am very sorry to hear about the severe issues you have experienced with your 2 New Beetles. I completely understand your frustration, but the tone of your letter did not help your cause. You have EVERY reason to be frustrated and upset, but making the comment "I have officially decided not to purchase another Volkswagen or foreign vehicle of any kind for the rest of my life" seems very emotion driven. Also, at the point you are in your lease there is not much VW can do to satisfy you. I guess they can offer for you to turn your car in early with no penalty or maybe reimburse you for any out of pocket expenses. But, they probably realize that they have lost you as a customer already, so why spend more money.

    I do agree that you have every right NOT to buy another VW product and I wouldn't either if I were in your position. I guess I should feel lucky that my Jetta has been trouble free in the 28,000 miles I have had it.

    Good Luck and I would suggest a Honda or Toyota for your next purchase.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    One question:

    Why did you lease another Beetle after experiencing so many problems with the first one? This is something I would never do - if I bought a lemon, I would definitely not try the same car again to see if I get lucky this time.
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    I would agree that some would be scared to lease another NB after experiencing problems with a previous Beetle. But, since ALL manufactures have lemons, maybe dmb was hoping that it would be a rare instance for another VW to have the same problems.
  • landielandie Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 VW Beetle deisal. When using the remote to lock the car sometimes the panic alarm would go off. Also, if the alarm didn't go off during locking, sometimes exactly 1 hour and 15 minutes later the panic alarm would go off. There seemed to be no reason for this. No one touch the car the wind wasn't blowing. Took to the dealer and they replaced the lock in the passenger door. Now for 3 weeks the remote seems to lock the car okay, but today after being locked for 1 hour and fifteen minutes the panic alarm went off. Anyone have a similar problem?
  • Does anyone know when the 2005 VW Beetles come out in the states?
  • In the summer of 2003, you had a life-long VW customer. Now, in the summer of 2004, I wouldn't buy a VW if you sold it to me for $1. That's correct: $1 US dollar. Not now, not ever. Nor will the friends, family and many colleagues who have witnessed my ordeals first- hand. Customer loyalty, I think you may find in future, is a matter of principle.

    Quite soon I should think that Volkswagen might be saying in a rather different sense: 'Drivers wanted'.

    Well, President Klauss, I very much hope you enjoyed my story. For I believe that very soon you will be reading it everywhere.

    Sincerely yours,

    Dissatisfied VW customer
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