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Old 10-25-2015, 07:23 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MkVer View Post
Everybody knows somebody with a horror story about one brand of car or another. Most issues can be traced back to owners not taking proper care of their vehicle or taking them to shoddy mechanics.

There will always be folks who have horror stories of premature failures but if it was really that big of an issue the NTSB would have stepped in and forced a recall.
Even though all vehicle models suffer problems, some are more prone to costly failures than others. These failures can be objectively quantified and compared across brands. In general European cars, and VW in particular, encounter problems at a higher rate of frequency than average.

I'm not sure how much failure can be attributed to neglect of maintenance. I contend that having more frequent replacement intervals for items that wear out is almost no different than having a higher frequency of failure. Both are costly.

I had a 1996 Subaru Legacy that I constantly praise for going 219,000 miles without a single problem, except for a catalytic converter that dropped below efficiency threshold, which I ignored since I lived in a non-DEQ county.

That said, Subaru has a well known design flaw that causes head gaskets to fail and require expensive labor to replace.

My question is, what are the most likely failures I might see with the 2010 Golf TDI?

Today I learned that it has a timing belt rather than a chain, and that the engine is an interference engine, so allowing the belt to wear out is an expensive proposition. By comparison, most of Toyota's lineup uses a timing chain that lasts the life of the vehicle, and many of the engines are non-interference so they will not suffer catastrophic failure if the chain were to break. This is something implemented into the vehicle at a greater cost, with the goal to improve long-term reliability which in turn improves resale value.

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Old 10-25-2015, 07:42 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpoint5 View Post
Today I learned that it has a timing belt rather than a chain, and that the engine is an interference engine, so allowing the belt to wear out is an expensive proposition. By comparison, most of Toyota's lineup uses a timing chain that lasts the life of the vehicle, and many of the engines are non-interference so they will not suffer catastrophic failure if the chain were to break. This is something implemented into the vehicle at a greater cost, with the goal to improve long-term reliability which in turn improves resale value.
Fit has a timing chain too. Just sayin'. But it sounds as though you're already stuck with the Vee Dub.

In general though I agree with your assessment. Japanese cars, Honda and Toyota in particular, are built to run almost indefinitely. Change the oil and keep driving. "Everyone has stories", true enough, but the fact is that Honda and Toyota revolutionized automobile reliability and maintenance frequency across the entire industry. Before them, head gaskets went at 45K miles and nobody blinked. Today cars run hundreds of thousands of miles and the engine is never even cracked open. Big difference. And it's all due to a guy named W. Edwards Deming.
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Old 10-25-2015, 11:28 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Did yours explode, or did you do it preventatively when changing the timing belt? I'm assuming there is some labor savings by doing it at the same time as the belt?
I bought a Beetle '98 (at 130k) and a '06 Jetta (at 46k IIRC). The Beetle had problems going into gears because the pendulum springs were flying around inside the housing.

The Jetta I had a SMF put in as preventative but the guru that did it showed me the damage to the housing and throw out arm from a previous grenade. It was about $3k to have timing belt, water pump, DMF, and I had a bad cam from oil shear caused by the unit pump design sharing narrow cam lobes with the injectors. The newer ones are common rail so they won't have that problem.

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How is drivability after changing to single mass? Wouldn't the drive axles see more wear since the clutch isn't absorbing as much of the force?
.
With a single mass flywheel the only difference is that it rings the flywheel at idle in neutral which gives a little more of the diesel clatter. If the SMF caused premature transmission failure it was very seldom.

I traded an '04 Jetta with auto in for the '06 Jetta. The '04 and before suffered from Jatco autotragics. The DSGs are real nice but have to be maintained with fluid changes every 30K and clutch engagement adjustments. I have what was VAG-COM software that works with the '06. It didn't work for the '98 and I don't know if it will work for the '10.
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Old 10-26-2015, 12:53 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MkVer View Post
Everybody remembers the "unintended acceleration" issues that forced a mass recall.
Did anyone ever demonstrate that there was an actual mechanical problem, and not just a) a few people making creative excuses for their poor driving that caused a crash; and b) a bunch more who hopped on the "Sue Toyota, they have deep pockets!" bandwagon?

Quote:
Most VW's came from the factory with a 100,000 mile timing belt interval but VW has since dropped that to 80,000 miles.
The question, though, is why the engines are designed so that a part like that requires changing at specified intervals?
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Old 10-26-2015, 07:12 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I'm pretty sure it was determined that the pedal position sensors supplied in Toyota vehicles were prone to unacceptable failure, and that is why they had a recall done. That said, I'd much prefer a faulty accelerator pedal position sensor than have my engine fail. It's much cheaper and easier to remedy.

My '69 VW Beetle had an accelerator pedal that went into the floorboard instead of extending up into the firewall. A tiny pebble fell into the gap between the pedal and the floor and caused it to stick on, which in turn prompted me to make an unplanned turn into a parking lot instead of continuing on into a stopped vehicle. They ought to have a safety recall on that death trap!
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Old 10-27-2015, 04:55 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Old 08-13-2018, 03:51 PM   #17 (permalink)
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My friend did end up buying the dieselgate 2010 TDI Golf with manual transmission. He's got about 155,000 miles on it now, and the turbo actuator appears to be bad and put the car into limp mode.

His mechanic says the part is $200, and labor about $1,000, although the turbo itself may be bad, in which case the cost to repair would be higher.

From what I'm told, VW will buy back the car even if it has the turbo issue, so long as the car can drive to the dealership to be bought back.

He's contemplating selling it back to VW, but he really likes his car and is also contemplating just taking the $2,000 they offered him to keep the car and fix the turbo. I'm trying to steer him away from keeping the car, as it's bound to have endless expensive problems pop up, especially as the miles and years accrue. We might know what VW will offer to buy back later today.

So, my original question remains as to what "cool" looking hatchbacks that get decent fuel economy exist? What can fit a drum kit, get good fuel economy, and rack up a ton of miles without being a maintenance nightmare?

EDIT: VW is offering $13k for his car. He paid $13,500 3 years and 100k miles ago. He's now thinking to buy a 2015 VW Golf TDI for roughly the same amount he's getting for his 2010.

His comment about the Fit, "The Fit is a teacher car". So, not cool enough I guess.

Apparently these older cars just get crushed, so VW doesn't care what condition they are in, or even if parts are taken off as long as it started and drove to the dealership to be traded in. We're thinking about putting some cheapo steel wheels and used tires on, and keeping his current wheels and 2 month old tires. Maybe take the spare tire out and anything else with some value.

I'm still trying to steer him away from another VW, but he loves the car. Any other contenders in the $13k range?

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