Volkswagen Passat Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone, new here and first question. I’m getting my first car and have looked at several 4 cylinder cars such as jettas, civics, foci and corollas, ect. With time I deliberated on the idea of getting something more serious both power and size wise. So now I’m thinking of getting 2000 Passat v6, automatic. I can afford this car, however I’m not willing nor do I have any time on fixing it. I know some people buy cars just for the looks and worry about other stuff later. I want to keep this car for a long time and need to know whether Passat is a SOLID car and if it’s worth investing money in to, or if it’s something that people buy with time and money on their hands for moding/pimping it or whatever?
Anyways, the main reason for me choosing Passat over other 4 door imports is its good reviews and other stuff I’ve read online. For example these two links I have looked at while doing my car search:

http://auto.consumerguide.com/Auto/Used/reviews/full/index.cfm/id/2322/act/usedcarreviewshowall/ (scroll down to important stuff [NHTSA Recall History])


http://autos.msn.com/research/vip/overview.aspx?modelid=9463&src=vip

Tell me if I’m mistaking about this car (give reasons, state common problems that are not found in the links, iIve looked at), and if it’s something that first time car owner shouldn’t get. Thanks in advance.


P.S. what’s B 5?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
MotherTrucker said:
P.S. what’s B 5?
It's the name of the platform that the Passat (as well as the original Audi A4 and similar year A6s) was built on. B5, then the redesign of the Passat is referred to as B5.5. The A4 went on to be built on the B6 platform and now the newest A4 is on the B7 chassis.

Passat's are no longer continuing on the Bx chassis.

To speak to the point about the reliability of the 2000 Passat, I will say this. The 99s and 2000s (from experience and reading here) were the most reliable of the Passats, besides the control arm issue in the front suspension. However, you're now looking at a 5-year old car and when things go wrong prices are not cheap. A well-taken care of car will last a long time and require very minimal, and not too expensive, regular maintenance. Big things to think about are the front suspension on these cars (there was a recall, but not sure what years, I know my former 99 was included) and the timing belt maintenance. This last one is very important and pricey.

But yes, the Passats are indeed solid. I sold my 99 after 5 years of absolute rock-solid reliability. I dealt with the control arms, partially my fault for lowering it, and that's about it. I traded it against a Focus SVT and the overall quality of the car isn't in the same planet. The Passat is that good.

Search out a well-taken care of low-mileage car and you might find yourself a great ride!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
First off thank you for the reply :thumbup: , keep em coming, I need your opinions! Yes you are right it’s not a cheap car to fix, say comparing to Honda Civic. However it is still way cheaper then :puke: Honda Accord which is in the same class of vehicles, or :puke: Infinity I 30.
On top of that Passat is way better looking ( :bowdown: German )and more reliable according to mentioned above sites…..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,455 Posts
i have a 2000 v6 automatic, put on about 40k (total right now @ 60k) havent had a problem yet besides control arms which are actually pretty common in our passats regardless of v6 or 1.8t. The only gripe i have is gas mileage, ever since they changed MTBE to ethanol in NYC's fuel my gas mileage dropped from about 25mpg to a solid 18mpg on 93 octane @ $2.39 per. Other than that, maintain your car and you should never have a problem.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
vincheung said:
i have a 2000 v6 automatic, put on about 40k (total right now @ 60k) havent had a problem yet besides control arms which are actually pretty common in our passats regardless of v6 or 1.8t. The only gripe i have is gas mileage, ever since they changed MTBE to ethanol in NYC's fuel my gas mileage dropped from about 25mpg to a solid 18mpg on 93 octane @ $2.39 per. Other than that, maintain your car and you should never have a problem.
wow, you talking 25mpg city or highway? Because if you got 25 in city driving, that would be incredible! 18 mpg if you talking about city driving is pretty low but not SUV low. My cousin gets 17 on his Odyssey……. Which is a thousand pounds heavier then Passat, motor’s about the same.

My thinking out loud:
Fuel tank size-18.5 gl

Miles per gallon -18

18.5 X 18 = 338 miles per tank of city driving

Fuel coast per gallon - $2.39

18.5 X 2.39 = $45.215 for full tank a.k.a. 338 miles

My expected driving mileage per week = maybe 170

Full tank of gas lasts 2 weeks costing me 22 dollars per week. I say it’s ok, considering all the comfort, luxury, engine power and trunk size of Passat. Who needs a civic? :whistle:

P.S. Control arms are steering right? What’s the problem with them and what are the coasts of replacement/fix.
vincheung said:
havent had a problem yet besides control arms which are actually pretty common in our passats regardless of v6 or 1.8t.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
MotherTrucker said:
P.S. Control arms are steering right? What’s the problem with them and what are the coasts of replacement/fix.
yup, steering. the passat 4-link suspension is very complex but very good. on lowered cars, the control arm bushing were known to wear out and you gut a very noticeable clunk in the front end. on my 99, while parked with the engine running if i rocked the steering wheel back and forth i could hear them clunk. this was exacerbated with cars that had been lowered and supposedly had the control arms tightened on cars while the car was not properly set on the ground.

control arms are NOT cheap. and in the northeast, the bolt that holds the control arms can very easily seize and cause a mechanic much pain. trust me, i watched a guy struggle for hours just getting the bolts out (one per side, they're called pinch bolts). so it becomes expensive when you start talking labor, alignment, parts, etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,268 Posts
Hey there. I just started posting here and am looking at a Passat as well. I have seen maney very mixed reviews as you probably will too. I do really like Passats a LOT and cant seem to let go of the idea of getting one. They are GREAT to drive, feel very solid, and have a lot of styling and features you only get in higher priced cars. Now, the bad side is that they are more expensive to maintain. VW hasn't been considered a very reliable make lately from what I can tell, though the Passat seems to do better than the rest of the VW lineup. If you get the 4 cyl. 1.8t engine, look for regular oil changes using a synthetic oil. There was a HUGE problem with this a couple of years ago. the Turbo engines run hotter and require synthetic, otherwise it will damage the engine. Some models after 2000 had a recall on the ignition coils as well, but I dont know if this affected 2000 or not. Any European car is going to be more expensive to repair and maintain, so you will want a good independent mechanic and try not to rely on the dealership. Personally, I am getting to the point where I WANT to do more maintenence and repair myself, so I suppose the higher cost would be a good motivation for me to learn more about doing it. I have been told that if you dont know or do not do anything on cars then it may be best to get something else. Then again I've heard of people having no major trouble at all. Other than that I have also heard that VW's tend to have lots of electrical glitches. It seems to me that a lot of people lose money by taking it in to the dealer for a small electrical problem but it doesnt always get fixed right the first time. Thus the need for a reliable independent.

So I am in the same position as you are. I'm really quite conflicted after reading so many good reviews, but then hearing so many horror stories. Incidentally I'm hoping to get a 2003 or 2004. I have been told that in addition to the coil issues, VW fixed some other bugs so the last few years have been less problematic.

For me, "reliability" means the car will start and run like a champ and not leave me stranded. I may get slightly annoyed at a burned out light or two, or a piece of trim needing to be reglued, but it doesnt freak me out.

my 2 cents...

Bill
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Medrosje said:
yup, steering. the passat 4-link suspension is very complex but very good. on lowered cars, the control arm bushing were known to wear out and you gut a very noticeable clunk in the front end. on my 99, while parked with the engine running if i rocked the steering wheel back and forth i could hear them clunk. this was exacerbated with cars that had been lowered and supposedly had the control arms tightened on cars while the car was not properly set on the ground.

control arms are NOT cheap. and in the northeast, the bolt that holds the control arms can very easily seize and cause a mechanic much pain. trust me, i watched a guy struggle for hours just getting the bolts out (one per side, they're called pinch bolts). so it becomes expensive when you start talking labor, alignment, parts, etc.
thanks for the info, thankfully i'm not planning on lowering my future car.

bill1975 said:
Hey there. I just started posting here and am looking at a Passat as well. I have seen maney very mixed reviews as you probably will too. I do really like Passats a LOT and cant seem to let go of the idea of getting one. They are GREAT to drive, feel very solid, and have a lot of styling and features you only get in higher priced cars. Now, the bad side is that they are more expensive to maintain. VW hasn't been considered a very reliable make lately from what I can tell, though the Passat seems to do better than the rest of the VW lineup. If you get the 4 cyl. 1.8t engine, look for regular oil changes using a synthetic oil. There was a HUGE problem with this a couple of years ago. the Turbo engines run hotter and require synthetic, otherwise it will damage the engine. Some models after 2000 had a recall on the ignition coils as well, but I dont know if this affected 2000 or not. Any European car is going to be more expensive to repair and maintain, so you will want a good independent mechanic and try not to rely on the dealership. Personally, I am getting to the point where I WANT to do more maintenence and repair myself, so I suppose the higher cost would be a good motivation for me to learn more about doing it. I have been told that if you dont know or do not do anything on cars then it may be best to get something else. Then again I've heard of people having no major trouble at all. Other than that I have also heard that VW's tend to have lots of electrical glitches. It seems to me that a lot of people lose money by taking it in to the dealer for a small electrical problem but it doesnt always get fixed right the first time. Thus the need for a reliable independent.

So I am in the same position as you are. I'm really quite conflicted after reading so many good reviews, but then hearing so many horror stories. Incidentally I'm hoping to get a 2003 or 2004. I have been told that in addition to the coil issues, VW fixed some other bugs so the last few years have been less problematic.

For me, "reliability" means the car will start and run like a champ and not leave me stranded. I may get slightly annoyed at a burned out light or two, or a piece of trim needing to be reglued, but it doesnt freak me out.

my 2 cents...

Bill
Yeah, I’m aware of 4 cyl. Engine problems, that’s why I what v6 and 2000. If you take a look at the links I provided it’s all there(recall history, trouble spots, ect..). I don’t know if it’s because passat is German that people tend to think it’s more costly to fix. I’ve looked at parts+labor for accord and i30 and both of them are more expensive to fix. From what I have looked at and info gathered from internet, Passat is the only sound option for someone (me) who wants to buy used, 4 door, v6, relatively cheap to fix
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
the oiling issues with the turbo i think were only related to the early motors, as the oil feed (or maybe it was the oil return) line wasn't shielded from the manifold.

most definitely, the turbo gets hot (mine used to glow cherry for up to 5 minutes, sometimes after driving up a short hill) but the cooling design is definitely adequate. like any motor it requires normal oil changes and the synthetic can't hurt. i had 115k on my 99 turbo, 60k of those miles were chipped. ZERO issues.

the coil issues started popping up in great amounts sometime around 2001 or 2002. i'm pretty sure it started with the B5.5s.

don't shy away from the turbo. it's a great motor.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
they added a shield from what i recall. that was the most significant change. i know my 99 had a simple metal shield, similar to the heat shield on the airbox, around one of the oil to turbo lines. my 99 wasn't subject to the recall, just 98s or early 99s.

i'm still surprised at how well the design of the turbo cooling works. common sense says that if you own a turbo and are driving spirited, you give the engine a little bit of time at idle to cool it down.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I'm quoting this site: http://autos.msn.com/research/vip/Reliability.aspx?modelid=9463&src=vip

"Occasional problems on this vehicle, 4-cylinder engine only, are failures of the Engine, Timing Belt, Mass Air Flow Sensor. Periodic problems on this vehicle are failures of the Ignition Power Stage, 1.8L engine only, and the Water Pump.Failure of the Engine is caused because the engine oil gels. When proper maintenance schedules for oil changes are followed, oil gelling should not occur. The cost to repair the Engine is estimated at $5,899.44 for parts and $858.00 for labor. The cost to repair the Timing Belt is estimated at $62.00 for parts and $195.00 for labor on the gas engine and $62.00 for parts. The cost to repair the Mass Air Flow Sensor is estimated at $380.00 for parts and $58.50 for labor. Volkswagen has issued a warranty extension due to the high number of Mass Air Flow failures. Mass Air Flow sensors are now warranted for 7 years, 70,000 miles on 1999 through 2001. The cost to repair the Ignition Power Stage is estimated at $125.00 for parts and $52.00 for labor. The cost to repair the Water Pump is estimated at $133.15 for the parts and $234.00 for labor for the 1.8L engine and $151.35 for parts and $338.00 for labor for the 2.8L engine. All prices are estimates based on $65 per flat rate hour and do not include diagnostic time or any applicable sales tax"

By the way i'm getting automatic, so even if i was to get turbo, its power would be somewhat inadequate for 3000lb+ car
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
MotherTrucker said:
By the way i'm getting automatic, so even if i was to get turbo, its power would be somewhat inadequate for 3000lb+ car
nah.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
so if you're worried about an automatic 1.8T chip it! my 99 was chipped for $200 and it was OUTSTANDING. little more expensive for the 2000 and up cars.

but i still don't think you'd be pissed about the performance of the auto/1.8t. you won't be overwhelmed and you won't be underwhelmed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
change the engine control unit (ECU) software to allow more boost. it's not a death wish. many many people have done it.

i had a relatively low-power chip added in from www.greedspeed.com which bumped horsepower from 150 up to around 190ish and torque from 150 ft-lbs to approx. 210 (their numbers, and my recollection, so if i'm a bit off excuse me).

there are numerous other companies that can do the same, with similar, or better, results
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
200 bucks for 40 hp, i say its pretty good, but site states it’s only 5-7hp to the wheels. Anyways on some other car forum I asked a question about chips and got pretty complicated answers. Something about complications that may occur, I don’t quiet remember. I assume it’s not “do it yourself” thing, so what is the installation coast for these toys? Any risks that come with getting a chip? (and I’m not talking about speeding ticket)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,449 Posts
remember, 200 bucks for 40hp is for 98-99 vehicles. the motors changed slighty for my2000 (not sure, maybe the addition of variable valve timing). it definitely wasn't 5-7hp at the wheels difference. my car was no slouch. 5th gear passing with the AC on went from difficult to a piece of cake. the amount of torque the 1.8T is capable of is very amazing.

chipping a normally aspirated car typically doesn't add too much power. it's with forced induction motors where you have the opportunity to add more boost. the flipside is the programs assume you're running super unleaded fuel so that they can run the most agressive ignition mappings.

that being said, yes, there are always downsides. you're running more boost. more strain on the turbo. more heat, etc. but the turbo can handle it and that's why i went with a less-aggressive chip, opting against absolute power for the hope of a longer-lasting turbo. as long as you change the oil and let the turbo cool down when you're done driving (assuming you've been driving hard) you're all set. you might have to upgrade the diverter valve ($35 part) at some point. but no biggie.

my chip required me to unhook the ecu, fedex it to cali, they soldered in the new chip, fedex-ed it back, and i plugged it back in. car was undriveable for a few days. but a few companies can do it right there on the spot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Medrosje said:
remember, 200 bucks for 40hp is for 98-99 vehicles. the motors changed slighty for my2000 (not sure, maybe the addition of variable valve timing). it definitely wasn't 5-7hp at the wheels difference. my car was no slouch. 5th gear passing with the AC on went from difficult to a piece of cake. the amount of torque the 1.8T is capable of is very amazing.

chipping a normally aspirated car typically doesn't add too much power. it's with forced induction motors where you have the opportunity to add more boost. the flipside is the programs assume you're running super unleaded fuel so that they can run the most agressive ignition mappings.

that being said, yes, there are always downsides. you're running more boost. more strain on the turbo. more heat, etc. but the turbo can handle it and that's why i went with a less-aggressive chip, opting against absolute power for the hope of a longer-lasting turbo. as long as you change the oil and let the turbo cool down when you're done driving (assuming you've been driving hard) you're all set. you might have to upgrade the diverter valve ($35 part) at some point. but no biggie.

my chip required me to unhook the ecu, fedex it to cali, they soldered in the new chip, fedex-ed it back, and i plugged it back in. car was undriveable for a few days. but a few companies can do it right there on the spot.
dont know, the link you provided states taht chip adds 5-7 HP. Here's the path: http://www.greedspeed.com/products/prod_details.aspx?prod_id=1151&app=34&app_desc=1999-2004 Volkswagen Golf/GTI IV VR6&cat=11
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top