2003 Volkswagen Passat Reviews and Owner Comments

2003 Volkswagen Passat owners review and rate their 2003 Volkswagen Passat.

2003 Volkswagen Passat (7 Reviews)
Body, Interior & Misc.
Drive Train
Electrical & Lights
Exhaust & Emissions
Heating & Air Conditioning
Suspension & Steering
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Have had my 2003 Passat 1.8l wagon for nearly 97,000 miles. Its been one of the nicest cars I've ever driven - especially the reassuring feel on the road - very safe, very stable, very solid, very German. I've had very few issues, but I'm also very religious about maintenance and have a great guy, Sergey at Absolute Auto in Alpharetta, working on it - he's talented and reasonably priced. I'd recommend this car to anyone, especially as opposed to a traditional German luxury car - which I think mine really is!
I've owned my 03 Passat, 1.8T for 4 years now. I've had pretty much all the same mechanical problems as everyone else. There is 1 very expensive repair I have to do soon and that's to replace the secondary air pump. VW wants over $800 to do it. I can do it for $350. Ignition coils were covered by a recall as well as the brake light swich. Oil leak is embarrasing when I park in a friends driveway. The only other issue I have with this small engine is turbo-lag and the drive by wire accelerator. I can't rely on a quick burst of speed to get into traffic. Throttle response is very slow. Also, the sealed transimission worries me that I can't monitor the fluid level and condition. Overall I think this is the safest car on the road. My wife was T-Boned on the driver side rear. I didn't know VW put airbags in the seats! Although expensive to repair comfort and safety earn high marks.
We have had 137,000 pretty much trouble free miles with ours (knocking on wood) Agree with one of the other reviewers about the outrageous cost of service at the dealerships. I wish we were getting better city driving milage as well.
1st new engine 35,000 miles. Second new engine 70,000 miles. V6 model. An absolutely beautiful lemon.
This is a great car, reliable and fun to drive. The only issue is the outrageous cost of service. Nobody knows how to service or repair them except a VW dealership, and they charge a jaw-droppiing amount. I'd be a VW customer forever if I could get reasonable servie costs, but as it is, I'll never buy another.
Overall, I believe this is a great car for the money. I've had to replace the brakes, ignition coils, cv joints, and rear springs so far. I know that I'll have to replace my timing belt and water pump by spring, but oh well, normal wear and tear.
Perhaps I got a lemon, but this car has been trouble since day one.