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Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Rashid

I posted a similiar thread a couple of weeks ago, when I was trying to decide between a 1 Series, A3, & Golf or similiar.

So my question to those that know is... Is it really that risky to buy a Golf or an A3 considering all the problems mentioned in the buyers guide.

I have 2 schools of thought.

1. I've read what it says, lots of potential issues, therefore keep away

2.. I see thousands of these on the roads, and all the people I know who own them are happy campers, so are the issues mentioned, the vocal minority?

Is there a way I could hedge my bets, i.e best engine to go for. Now that they have agreed to the recall on the 2.0 TDi is that now ok to go with? or risky due to the issue with the oil pump.

I have looked into a Warranty, WD comes in around £500 for the year.

(I'm looking at years 2005 - 2006 - Budget around £5k)

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Rashid

Nobody have an informed opinion, how about an ill informed one?

Go on ;)

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - jamie745

Its impossible for anybody to give a proper answer to this because no two used cars are the same. Its not possible for us to sit here and go 'get a Golf as its a solid used buy' because it always depends on so many things. What i would say is any car which has sold in great numbers for many years will have a catalogue of 'possible problem points' on the internet and in buyers guides.

Link us to some adverts of specific cars you're looking at and we might be able to judge better between them.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Avant

The trouble with a £5k Golf or A3 is that because they hold their value well, you'll have to buy an older model than you would, say, a Focus or Astra. They are good cars but not necessarily any more durable than the competition.

If I had £5k to spend I would also be trying to avoid expensive repairs. I'd go for a petrol Toyota Corolla / Auris or an old-shape Honda Civic (the 2.0 Type S if I could find one).

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Buster Cambelt

That's the rub, they hold their price better than most and are quite expensive to start with so £5k gets you an older model. The paradox is that becuase they are well built in the first place the older model may be a better bet than some newer alternatives....

For all the VAG bashing (and thanks to Skoda's wretched performance I won't buy VAG products, whether than lasts we'll see) they seem to sell a lot of cars and the VW and Audi variants seem to hold their price really well - indicating they are products that are in demand.

I do agree with Avant here, something like a Honda Civic would be worth considering as long as you can handle the looks and the rear vision doesn't bother you (it didn't me). The 1.8 litre petrol is an astonishingly smooth motor and will probably be really reliable.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Bobbin Threadbare

I do agree with Avant here, something like a Honda Civic would be worth considering as long as you can handle the looks and the rear vision doesn't bother you (it didn't me). The 1.8 litre petrol is an astonishingly smooth motor and will probably be really reliable.

Me too. The Civic actually holds value pretty well (looking on Autotrader) as they are known for their general decentness! By this I mean in the used market. The new style Civic is a really attractive car.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Avant

You either love or loathe the new (2006 on) shape: I was thinking of the old shape (2001-2006) whose looks are less interesting but less controversial, and rear visibility isn't a problem. It also has a huge amount of legroom in the back.

It was designed for a 1.6 engine and the 2.0 Type S goes very well. £5k would get you a late (2005) model.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Bobbin Threadbare

Yeah I meant both types. Both are nice actually!

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - unthrottled

Can't stand the post 2006 model I'm afraid. I'm really disappointed that the Japanese manufacturers seem to be hell bent on jazzing up their cars. What could be more boring than not being able to see properly?

I have looked into a Warranty, WD comes in around £500 for the year.

Looking at warranties is a sure sign that you're looking at a car that you can't afford to run. Always better to get a cheap car and spend the money driving and maintaining it than vice versa. Most purchasing mistakes arise from greed ie trying to get the 'best deal' and ending up with a lemon.

Edited by unthrottled on 14/01/2012 at 19:24

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - gordonbennet

Avant speaks for me too.

I wouldn't bother with either of the overpriced VAG cars, like Avant i'd be looking for a good example of a Civic 2.0S type 5 door up to 2005.

Won't need a warranty-unlikely-to-pay-out either.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - SteveLee

If I had to go VAG, I'd spend my money on an older 1.9PD engined car and keep a bit spare. Why not look at something like a Kia Cee'd? You'd get one with plenty of warranty left on it for £5K, it's a perfectly good car. Badge snobbery is for people who love burning money for the sake of it.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Rashid

If I had to go VAG, I'd spend my money on an older 1.9PD engined car and keep a bit spare. Why not look at something like a Kia Cee'd? You'd get one with plenty of warranty left on it for £5K, it's a perfectly good car. Badge snobbery is for people who love burning money for the sake of it.

That's one of my thoughts, and possibly spend a bit less, just in case.

Badge Snobbery, I sort of know what you mean, but equally I don't quite agree. I don't know the Kia, but out of the other cars that I've looked at, I've generally found them lacking , not necesarily in build quality or the mechanics, more from aestheics, either inside or out.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Rashid

'Looking at warranties is a sure sign that you're looking at a car that you can't afford to run. Always better to get a cheap car and spend the money driving and maintaining it than vice versa. Most purchasing mistakes arise from greed ie trying to get the 'best deal' and ending up with a lemon'

I don't agree, my rationale for looking at warranties is because of all the negative issues that I've read about in the buyers guide, and on other sites. It would be my failsafe. Also, why wouldn't you look into a warranty, as long as you buy a good one, or realise its potential limitations, I don't see that as a negative. Personally, I have no issues with cheap cars, but as the car will be carrying my children, I would rather a more recent model with safer features and technology. Also, I would say that there is more chance of mechanical failure on an old cheap car, and who needs the hassle, I don't.

Honda Civic 2006 - I drove one too, it was not bad, but lacked something for me, drive was ok, was impressed with some of it's features, the boot, rear seats that come out, but for me, I don't need those features so I'll probably leave it.

Re, my initial question, it was to do with all the negative comments written about VAG vehicles, I would like to buy a Golf or Audi, but I'd be an idiot if I didn't at least consider all that I've read. I was hoping that perhaps more owners or like, would have experience and could advise , good or bad. I realise that no two cars are the same, but they can have inherent faults, and I wondered does the A3 and Golf have them, or is there a particular engine that is safer.

Thanks all for the comments though, even if I disagree, I appreciate your opinions


Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - gordonbennet

Rashid, i could understand your enthusiasm if you hadn't a clue about the pitfalls.

Instead though you are going to insure against possible poor durability by purchasing an aftermarket warranty, this shows you expect the car of your dreams to be unreliable, more like a nightmare than a dream.

You do realise that the expensive warranty you will undoubtably need will quite possibly not pay out when needed.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - unthrottled

My father has had two VW Golf Estate 1.9 PDs. An early mark IV and a Mark V. The old one was smaller, but livelier and much more economical. He had only one problem; the timing belt snapped on the first one. That was a big bill, but it was a company car so it wasn't his problem.

I like the 1.9 PDs, but the pre 2005 ones are holding their prices so well that they often don't represent good value for money. Paying £4k+ for a six or seven year old mid size car just doesn't make much sense.

Warranties are full of holes. If you're worried about the safety of your wife and kids, look at Ford/Vauxhall/Toyota petrol cars. Don't buy into the myth of bulletproof engineering. A working Ford Focus is safer than an ageing Audi with the ABS light removed...

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Rashid

Rashid, i could understand your enthusiasm if you hadn't a clue about the pitfalls.

Instead though you are going to insure against possible poor durability by purchasing an aftermarket warranty, this shows you expect the car of your dreams to be unreliable, more like a nightmare than a dream.

You do realise that the expensive warranty you will undoubtably need will quite possibly not pay out when needed.

To your first point, yes, and to your second point, hopefully not. That's why I'm not going for the cheapest warranty, and re the car purchase, my money stays in my pocket until I'm satisfied that it''s worth or not worth the risk.

Most of the other car choices that have been suggested just don't do it for me, I obviously want the car to be reliable and safe, but I have to like it, to enjoy it, otherwise I'd just get a bus. I appreciate the suggestions, and I have taken them onboard and looked at the them, and even driven a couple but I haven't found a suitable contender, yet.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Roly93

I'm a VaG fan (he says putting on my tin hat) !!

I have to be honest though I wouldn't buy one on a tight budget. For £5K you are not going to get much in the way of an A3.

I would go for something more like a Focus for this money, there are bags of them around and they are cheap and reliable and anyone knows how to fix them cheaply.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - thunderbird

Rashid

Take your £5000 to your nearest Kia dealer. For that money you should be avble to get a 57 plate Ceed 1.6 petrol, maybe even a newer one if you are lucky. Diesels cost a bit more but 1.6 ones don't have a DPF thus are suitable for town use.

They come with a manufacturers 7 year or 100,000 mile warranty thus will have at least 2 years left, possibly 3 but you need to make sure they have been serviced according to Kia's schedule, better still at a Kia dealer. better still the one that's selling the car.

You will get a car that drives virtually as well as the competion, are well put together and reliable and are probably a little more spacious.

OK you won't have an Audi/VW badge on it but if it makes you feel better buy an Audi/VW key ring, no one will know since the key is exactly the same.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Bobbin Threadbare

I reckon those Hyundai i30s have the look of a 1-series BMW about them.

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - ChannelZ

I reckon those Hyundai i30s have the look of a 1-series BMW about them.

Better car than the 1-series. No transmission tunnel and diff to soak up the interior space, no spine breaking runflat tyres, and the correct wheels are driven.

We've zero regrets in buying our i30. As for the Mondeo, it's a dose, and will be replaced with another i30 sometime this year...

Audi A3 / VW Golf - Buy Or Leave Well Alone? - Rashid

'OK you won't have an Audi/VW badge on it but if it makes you feel better buy an Audi/VW key ring, no one will know since the key is exactly the same.'

Not forgetting my VW/Audi cap and jacket ! ;)

But seriously, good idea, the 7 yr warranty sounds quite amazing, not so keen on th estyling but maybe in the flesh. Thanks also Bobbin Threadbare, quite liked the look of the i30, not sure I quite agree that it looks like the 1 series, well no more or less than any small car looks like x.

I'll add that to the list, and have a test drive.

Worst case, they don't do it for me, but at least my decision would then be informed, possibly stupid, but still informed.

 

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