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Reliability of VW Jetta Diesel

I drive between BC Canada and Sonora Mexico 2X a year. I need a reliable, fuel efficient vehicle. How reliable is the VW Jetta diesel

Post this question on TDIClub.com for a definitive answer on reliability or look at the various forums there.

A diesel is an interesting and unique car to own (we have owned two of them) but don’t expect to save money over other choices such as a Chevrolet Cobalt XFE, good for 37 MPG highway and relatively inexpensive to buy. VW TDI diesels need expensive engine oil and more frequent expensive fuel filter changes. You need to know how to operate a manual transmission for a Cobalt XFE. For long trips, shifting is minimal, of course. There are still many more Chevrolet dealers than VW dealers too, something to consider for when you are far from home.

Reliability on VW’s seems to vary even from individual car to car. There’s people who never have any problems (or at least don’t complain much) and there’s some that just turn into total nightmares, particularly of the electrical variety.

If you’re looking at a new one, their reliability has gotten a bit better in the last few years and I wouldn’t say they’re so bad that you should discount them just on reliability grounds.

Of course, if you really want something efficient, can you get away with buying and registering a car in Mexico? There’s smaller VW models sold there that with the diesel engine are good for over 60 mpg.

“Of course, if you really want something efficient, can you get away with buying and registering a car in Mexico? There’s smaller VW models sold there that with the diesel engine are good for over 60 mpg.”

Would that work for Canadian residents? I’d be surprised if Mexico and Canad have the same safety and pollution regulations. But I’ve been surprised before.

I think it’s a little easier to “grey-market” in a vehicle in Canada (you see a lot of Japanese-spec cars in Vancouver). But I was thinking more if the OP has a semi-permanent address in Mexico where they could actually register the car there and just drive it up to BC to “visit”.

Perhaps I’m just projecting my own desire for the small diesel vehicles they don’t sell here.

The TDI should do well under those conditions. While I am one how has had very few problems with my 2002 model with over 100,000 miles so far, they seem to be subject to the odd electrical things.

Overall based on my experience and the information I have seen elsewhere.

This is my second VW diesel and I doubt that it will be my last, if I outlast my current car.

The only cars that can be imported into Canada are ones made for the N. American market. Mexican cars are out. It’s against the law for a Canadian resident to own and operate a vehicle licensed in another country. I’ve already checked out that option.

Yes, but I think part of the issue is “travel to Mexico.” My understading is Pemex gasoline is pretty awful, and diesel-fuelled vehicles are better suited, esp. as one travells “off the beaten path.”

The gasoline (100% gasoline) sold in Mexico is a superior product. Available in 87 and 92 octane flavors. About $3/gallon. The Diesel sold here might not be the low-sulfur type NEW U.S. models require…The new TDI models are very touchy about getting their proper maintenance…Better check and see if they REQUIRE low-sulfur fuel…