Replace transmission

Should I replace the transmission on my 2002 vw cabrio or get another car?

If you want a real response, you’re going to have to give a bit more info than that. How did you manage to kill a transmission so quickly? How many miles does it have on it? What is wrong with the transmission? Any other problems with the car?


It has 115000 miles on it. It was having coolant sensor problems, no big deal according to my mechanic. Yesterday after a weekend road trip it started making horrible noises and driving weird like I would push on the gas and it wouldn’t go and then would rev after I took my foot off the gas pedal. It is at a repair shop 3 hours from here in the country, the mechanic there said it was the transmission and quoted me 2200 for him putting a used transmission in it. I paid 3k to have body work done to it after an accident and that was only 6 months ago. I also put a new timing belt on it and new tires and catalytic converter all since then. I love this car but 2k more is making me wonder if I should give up on it and just get a cheap used car. I’m broke, can’t afford a car payment, or to fix it. I can try to come up with the money to fix it but can’t handle any more break downs and worry if the transition goes then it will be something else big next. Please help, I need advice.

Well, this a classic case of whether to go with the devil you know or dive into the unknown. You already have a cheap used car, but you know the history on it. Getting another car won’t magically eliminate the possibility of more problems down the road. The fact that it’s a VW is, I think, a strike against you. But otherwise, if the car is mechanically sound, I’d say replace the transmission.

You might also consider getting a second opinion on the problem. Just a suggestion; there is a lot of money involved here. Good luck.

You can’t get anything but an old beater for 2.2k

Fix the VW and drive another 115,000

BTW: From an accounting standpoint, something like this is an “extraordinary repair” and isn’t treated like an expense. So you’re adding on to the life of your asset.

You stated that you “love the car” so this decision should be easy to make.

I think I will side with Jeffmw05 on this one, purely based on economics. In economics, the repairs you have already paid for are not considered in the decision since they are sunk costs- you can’t get the money back anyway, no matter which decision you make. You can’t get another car anywhere near as good as you have now for $2200. I would repair this car and just nurse it along, driving it only when you have to. I am not completely familiar with VW transmissions, but I would also ask about the differential and if he thinks there could be any damage to it.

I know this doesn’t really help right now, but just in the future, stay away from VW. If you are concerned with reliability, as it seems you are and as you should be, next time you are up for a car, get a Honda or a Toyota.

Hope this helps,

And get one with a manual transmission.
Clutch jobs cost less than transmission replacements.