6 cylinder vs. 4 cylinder turbo

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sobi

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Mar 29, 2005
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#1
So I'm gonna be buying a new car soon (used - new to me) and was wondering what peoples opinions are on the two. Obviously, the 4 is better on gas, but then the turbo has me worried. Are they expensive to fix? Do they go out often? What are some of your experiences?

PS - for the record, I'm looking at VW jettas from 03-04.
 
Jun 2, 2005
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#2
PS - for the record, I'm looking at VW jettas from 03-04.
Haha, I knew what you were looking at buying from the title of the thread. I went through the same process in '02 when I was buying my Jetta.

For the record, I went with the VR6/GLX with tiptronic and I was extremely happy with it.
 

sobi

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^^^ you're reply is worth 1200 lbs. of dog poo if you give no explanation. The 4 has a turbo, so it's another part that can break, making it semi less reliable. My question is how much less reliable (if at all) is it.

And Voss's Tumor... I'm really wanting the GLI. That thing is purrrrrdy. I'm just torn between filling the tank more often, or having to deal with an eventual turbo blow-out.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
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#5
DO NOT BUY A VW!!!!!!!!!!

buy a honda or a toyota

DO NOT BUY A VW

if you must buy a german car look into a BMW
in 20 years of turning wrenches i have never worked on bigger pieces of shit than VW's especially the mexican built jetta's they are total junk
 

Don the Radio Guy

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#6
Just put "jetta reliability" in a search engine and start reading. I haven't driven a VW in years, but when I did I liked the VR6 performance wise. Before I drove trucks for a living I did a short stint selling VW's, and they just aren't the most reliable cars. Fun to drive, yes. Good performance, yes. 200,000 miles without a single problem, no.

Turbo blow out is something you would have to worry about with the 4 cyl, and it is an expensive thing when it happens. However, statistically, it's not all that common as long as the car wasn't beaten, which is common with these cars.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
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#7
a used turbo car is dicey at best, if forced to make the decision i would go with the 6, turbos are very delicate pieces of machinery that people seem to love to abuse, just ask any one thats had to replace one,

and since no one in there right mind would buy a VW than its not really an issue.

a good friend of mine is currently suing VW because his side curtain air bags deployed FOR NO REASON, well there was a reason, it was not designed properly and VW refuses to admit fault, i wouldn't buy a VW if they were the last car in the world, i would build my own car first and power it with a lawn tractor motor
 

Sinn Fein

Infidel and White Interloper
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Aug 29, 2002
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#8
As I once said to a friend of mine, buying a used car with a turbocharged engine is quite possibly one of the dumbest things you could possibly do... ever.

Like Fezman says, buy a Honda or a Toyota.
 

Zona992006

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Jan 26, 2007
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#9
So I'm gonna be buying a new car soon (used - new to me) and was wondering what peoples opinions are on the two. Obviously, the 4 is better on gas, but then the turbo has me worried. Are they expensive to fix? Do they go out often? What are some of your experiences?

PS - for the record, I'm looking at VW jettas from 03-04.
if you do a search, you will find that Jetta's have a terrible repair rep. they are listed at one of the top ten worse cars to buy in Consumer report. I know because I had to buy my daughter a car recently and she waned a jetta....

Take a look at Hyundai's. They used to be pieces of crap but now they are pretty good and have the best warranties out there. 6 year 60k miles. Let me know and I will show you were I did my research on what to buy and what were considered pieces of crap.
 

Zona992006

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Jan 26, 2007
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#10
DO NOT BUY A VW!!!!!!!!!!

buy a honda or a toyota

DO NOT BUY A VW

if you must buy a german car look into a BMW
in 20 years of turning wrenches i have never worked on bigger pieces of shit than VW's especially the mexican built jetta's they are total junk
Especially he 5 series. I love mine so far and have had no problems what so ever....
 

sobi

Registered User
Mar 29, 2005
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#11
I have a friend who owns a shop that specializes in VW's. I'm not all that worried about problems. Also, I don't like honda, toyota, or really any of the japanese cars. They are extremely boring looking cars, and no fun to drive. Besides... I know of just about all the "regular problems" VW has (coil packs, window regulators, etc), so I know what to expect, and what to look for when I buy one. That more or less eliminates any problems I should have. Other than that, thanks for the advice. I'm most likely going to steer clear of the 1.8, and just look for the 6... or maybe even just go with a 4 banger.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
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#12
the only dissapointment that ive had with mine is a few issues with the interior, that being said its a 2001, so its now 7 years old, the drivers seat left side bolster has torn at a seam (i can fix it but will have to un cover the seat) and some of the faux wood trim has cracked, not to the point that its falling out but i see the cracks and it drives me nuts, i also had some sensors go bad but they were covered under warntee, but i did have to replace a lower control arm because the ball joints are non serviceable, this is common with aluminum control arms., and non serviceable ball joints are the norm now.
the hunday is a great choice (newer of course) if your looking for economy, dont buy a VW, you will be a slave to the dealer.
 

sobi

Registered User
Mar 29, 2005
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#13
You never have to be a slave to the dealer with VW if you simply educate yourself through the Vortex. ;)

http://www.vwvortex.com
 

Zona992006

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Jan 26, 2007
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#14
I have a friend who owns a shop that specializes in VW's. I'm not all that worried about problems. Also, I don't like honda, toyota, or really any of the japanese cars. They are extremely boring looking cars, and no fun to drive. Besides... I know of just about all the "regular problems" VW has (coil packs, window regulators, etc), so I know what to expect, and what to look for when I buy one. That more or less eliminates any problems I should have. Other than that, thanks for the advice. I'm most likely going to steer clear of the 1.8, and just look for the 6... or maybe even just go with a 4 banger.
Well if your stuck on vw's, I had a GTI back in the day. bought it new in 88. Great little car but not a 4cyl. turbo so I cant speak on them.

Buying a used turbo really isnt that bad since the years your looking at are not that old. Just make sure you get a copy of the maintenance records and do a carfax check on it.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
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#15
knock your socks off, ive gotten to the point that i dont even want to do oil changes on them, let alone anything else. even changing a fucking tire is a pain in the ass. you can keep them. you know that they hide the paint code under the bumper. oh yea its supposed to me in the trunk..... usualy right were the spair tire rubs it off. when the battery dies it has to go get re programed.... fuck VW i will NEVER own one and i will NEVER endorse one. i can go on for HOURS and pages and pages of bad personal and professional experiences with them.

exception is the diesels from the 80's and thats just because i want one to run on dirty fry oil
 

SteveSteele

1 dog's goin this way..1 dog's goin that way...
Nov 22, 2004
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#16
Fezzie's right. The Mexican built Jetta/Golf are big pieces of shite. I fortunately winded up with a GTI-VR6 from Germany and mine has been solid so far (knock wood). They are a blast to drive and with a few mods there are more miles of smiles to be had. If you really want a turbo, you can buy a bolt on kit for the VR6's from C2 Mototsports.
 

sobi

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Mar 29, 2005
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#17
I'm not looking to do any mods really. Just put in a small system to bump my music, and other than that, I just want to get the most dependable one I can get. Maybe I'll start looking hardcore for wolfsburgs.
 
Aug 27, 2002
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#18
I had 2 VW's '96 Jetta GL (4 cyl) and an '00 Jetta 1.8T. I liked them both, but wouldn't want to own another one. It was mostly little shit but it was enough. I was just so disappointed with it it left a bad taste in my mouth for VWs. I just feel that VWs are overpriced for the quality of car that it is. If I were to buy a German car, it would be an AUDI w/quattro or the all wheel BMWs, I think that they end in X. The rest is just overpriced crap.

I disagree with you about the Japanese Cars. My '07 Acura TL is a lot of fun to drive...
 

Don the Radio Guy

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#19
I am pretty sure there is no difference between how a Mexican robot builds a car and how a German robot builds the car. It has to do with the design and quality of the parts used. Audis are all made in Germany and have the same questionable reliability records. The Audi I had was nothing but trouble from day one.

If you wanna buy a VW, you buy it for a fun car to drive. Just figure in the costs of upkeep as the price you pay. People may tell you to buy Hondas, Toyotas or Hyundais but they don't drive like a German car. BMW would be the next step up and they're a little more reliable but still nowhere near a Lexus or Acura. If German cars were fun to drive AND reliable, everyone would drive them. Just evaluate your needs and go from there.

And yes, the VR6 is less reliable statistically than even the turbo 4.
 

sobi

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Mar 29, 2005
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#20
And yes, the VR6 is less reliable statistically than even the turbo 4.
Care to elaborate? When just put out there, that statement doesn't seem to make sense. This is why I would love to learn why.
 

SteveSteele

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Nov 22, 2004
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#21
I'm not looking to do any mods really. Just put in a small system to bump my music, and other than that, I just want to get the most dependable one I can get. Maybe I'll start looking hardcore for wolfsburgs.
If you want to add a system, plan on spending some cash to upgrade the terminal wires. That is a notorious weak link in the VW's. Plan on going to a 0 or 00 gauge depending on how much wattage you plan on running. I'm running a 400 watt 4 channel for front and rear's (separates up front and 8" mid/bass in the rear) and another 400 watter running in mono feedin a 12" sub in the hatch, so I went with 00 gauge for my main terminal wires.

You say no performance mods now but wait. You'll want to add something sooner or later. Tires and suspension mods are the best bet. If you have any questions, PM me and I'll tell you what's good and what's not.
 

Don the Radio Guy

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#22
Care to elaborate? When just put out there, that statement doesn't seem to make sense. This is why I would love to learn why.
Let me see if I can find the article I read about it a while back. When I sold the things VW didn't have a 4 cyl turbo model, and the VR6 was new. But historically the VR6 just hasn't been that great in reliability. From what I've seen, the 1.8 turbo isn't THAT bad. Of course turbos scare a lot of people, but if they're not abused it's not a problem usually. The trick is finding one that hasn't been abused by some 18 year old rich kid.
 

Chino Kapone

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Jun 10, 2005
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#23
Do not buy a used turbo Jetta!!!

My exgf had an 01 1.8t wolfsburg. She bought it with 40k and that thing gave her nothing but trouble. In and outta the shop for stupid shit. The MAP sensor would go out all the time. Her car would be outta commision weeks at a time.

My Cousin had a VR6 and only got about 100k out of it. It was in and outta the shop all the time.

If you don't like the looks of hondas or toyotas what makes the Jetta so appealing?

I would worry less about apperance and more about quality. Unless we are talking sports cars.
 

Chino Kapone

Yo, whats wrong wit da beer we got?
Jun 10, 2005
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#24
If you want a fun reliable cool car, check out the 01 Subaru impreza 2.5rs. There are not a ton of them around, extremely reliable 4cylinders non-turbo. AWD and will last for a really long time.

My roommate drives one, has tons of mods, thrown it on the track and it still drives extremely well with over 130k miles on it.
 

sobi

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Mar 29, 2005
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#25
If you want to add a system, plan on spending some cash to upgrade the terminal wires. That is a notorious weak link in the VW's. Plan on going to a 0 or 00 gauge depending on how much wattage you plan on running. I'm running a 400 watt 4 channel for front and rear's (separates up front and 8" mid/bass in the rear) and another 400 watter running in mono feedin a 12" sub in the hatch, so I went with 00 gauge for my main terminal wires.

You say no performance mods now but wait. You'll want to add something sooner or later. Tires and suspension mods are the best bet. If you have any questions, PM me and I'll tell you what's good and what's not.

Thanks for the wire advice. As for mods, I'm pretty stern on that. If I do though (which I doubt) my buddy has a specialty VW garage. They made a rear-engine gti that got on the cover of Euro-Tuner a few years back, so I would always just go to him for help with anything. Thats part of the reason I'm not too worried about the usual VW problems.
 
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