2002 VW beetle


#1

I have an electrical problem with a 02 2.0l bug that has no solution… First, EPC light came on, (along with mechanical issues) but finally that issue was repaired. Then the AC went out, relpaced it, and have been dealing with a CEL ever since. Replaced the alternator twice, the gas peddle twice, one battery, a fan switch, new wiring to the battery and so on. Went to the movies last night, came out, car wouldn’t start - no clicking, no slow turning over - it was as if I was not turning the key to the start position. Jumped the car, it started, and drove home (CEL still on of course). This morning it started, but the trunk would not open by hitting the switch inside the car. (It opend by remote only as of this posting) Three days ago I came home in another vehicle to find my bug with the drivers side blinkers lit for no apparent reason.

It has become costly - about 2k in 3 weeks of repairs, yet with the replacement of all parts, the problem still exists. No fuzes are blown. I am just afraid to leave the car for the wife for fear it will simply decide to shut down… Anyone have any recommendations? (other than to sell the car - can’t afford a replacement at this point)


#2

I don’t know what you can and cannot afford, but I know that the 2001 VW Beetle that I had cost far more in maintenance than I would have ever spent on another car. When my mechanic told me that the turbo was next on the list, I bombed the price, sold it, and bought an older (but unbelievably reliable) Honda. Watch out for the creeping maintenance costs (although my costs jumped by thousands with the VW) and then ending up with a worthless car when something major (engine, turbo, transmission) goes out. The VW Beetle was the absolutely worst vehicle I have ever owned. It was my daughter’s and was really pleasant to drive, but it wasn’t drive-able very often.


#3

Durwin - thanks for the comments. I think you may be right. I am caught in a vortex here - i keep thinking that just one more repair and the bug will be perfect - but the “one more repair” seems unending. It’s a shame, since the car is a blast to drive…


#4

Except for a convertible, it is the most “visible” car I have ever driven. You could see everything, everywhere. We never had problems with the transmission, which was super smooth and a joy to drive.

But the dash was disintegrating (OK, I know that European cars underestimated summer heat effects on car interiors, but that was sorted out in the 1990s), the electrical system was a disaster (had to replace the alternator, the fuse-box, several electrical components), the turbo was leaking and (according to my trusted mechanic) on its way out, and we’d just had enough of dumping money into this car.

My daughter’s boyfriend found a 2001 Honda S2000 for just under $10k and it was the best investment we’d made. Even more of a blast than the VW, more reliable, convertible, fun, fun, fun. By this time I’d spent about that much on the VW so I took a huge loss, dumped the VW, and went for the Honda. We’ve never looked back.

(More fun to drive than the VW, better transmission, hugely reliable, and I hope you don’t buy one because I may be in the market for my third S2000 so I don’t want the prices to go up.)