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Do Golf R/GTI's "fall apart" as they get older?

joecc

New member
Location
US
Car(s)
Tacoma
I'm considering a 2018/19 Golf R. I understand the the internet can be cess pool of disinformation but as I have posted on various car web sites, I keep hearing that after 8-10 years or 100K miles these VW's "fall apart" or are "endless money pits" or other such things.

Is this real or BS?
 

Boje

Go Kart Newbie
Location
Brooklyn, NY
Car(s)
2015 GTI, 6MT
~113k miles here on a 2015 GTI Autobahn with sunroof – the year/spec everyone says not to buy – currently EQT Stage 2 and driven harder as time goes on, and it's running better now than ever. The things I've had to replace due to failure are: both fuel pumps, heater core, and the water pump & housing, and the coil packs, all only once. Did sound deadening throughout last weekend and the car now has no rattles, feels absolutely solid. Fingers crossed posting this doesn't jinx anything
 

Dog Dad Wagon

Autocross Champion
Location
Innnnn West Philadelphia...
Car(s)
19 Alltrack 6MT
I'm considering a 2018/19 Golf R. I understand the the internet can be cess pool of disinformation but as I have posted on various car web sites, I keep hearing that after 8-10 years or 100K miles these VW's "fall apart" or are "endless money pits" or other such things.

Is this real or BS?

it’s Mostly BS. I traded my 95K mile 2015 MK7 GTI in and it had never had a single check engine light, and wasn’t showing signs of approaching breakdown. Just maintain the car and be willing to proactively replace things like serpentine belts and the car can reasonably go 200K+ before any MAJOR issues crop up.
 

GolfRRRR1

Go Kart Champion
Location
Michigan
2016 VW Golf R NOTHING has been wrong, ever. 36,000 miles Stage 2 tuned since 2017
2015 VW Passat NOTHING has been wrong, ever, 150,000 miles (Headlights suck but LED's took care of it)
These are my first two VW's and I will admit to being a little nervous about it, but I honestly have not had one single issue with either, ever. I am hyper vigilant with maintenance though. Knock on wood LOL
 

okMK

Drag Racing Champion
Location
AZ
Car(s)
16 2dr MK7
These don't fall apart worse than any other vehicle. As long as you do the recommended maintenance and your due diligence, it will be fine.
 

sterkrazzy

Autocross Champion
Location
United States
Car(s)
2018 R
I've gotten rid of both of my GTIs when they were around 10 years old. It might not be as big of a problem in northern states, but these interiors do not hold up to the heat very well. All the plastics get super brittle and the soft touch starts to melt. I've had plenty of things break on me from trying to fix something else when it needs to be taken apart. They both had headliner issues too. One of the first things I got for my R was a covercraft sunscreen, but I still need to replace the crappy tint the previous owner had installed with ceramic tint. I'm hoping that'll be enough to help protect it a bit.

The engine bay and everything in there held up fairly well though, but the interiors are a different story.
 

hans611

Lost
Location
Miami
Car(s)
'16 Golf R 6MT
I had my Mk5 GTI in Miami from 2012 to 2018, I drove it from 52k to 106k miles in that time and it was fine... the headliner did fall though (once to the previous owner and once with me), but with the newer Mk7s, the headliner seems to do a lot better.
It wasn't that bad, from what i recall, it felt pretty much the same the day I sold it as the day I got it.... or else I wouldn't have gotten another lol

Edit: if anyone wants to see, below is the entire history of all the repairs done / parts that failed + upgrades on that car...
Doesn't incl. maintenance like tires, oil changes.... or cam followers, etc... I would replace those every 20k lol
I did sell it with the original OEM clutch still, already slipping though, and had just finally swapped the original brakes at ~90k
I think the car did great and had tons of life left

  • Drive belts replaced @33k
  • Camshaft seals replaced @33k
  • Headliner replaced @49k
  • (Battery ~50k)
  • Dealer 40k mi service @53k
  • (Brake fluid flush)
  • Intake manifold flaps replaced (Recall) @53k
  • Spark plugs and coils replaced @62k
  • Drivers seat belt buckle replaced @70k
  • Headliner/door-card Alcantera wrap @72k
  • Neuspeed CAI installed @72k
  • Coil-overs installed - Ultimos @75.2k
  • Small radiator fan replaced @75.2k
  • APR HPFP installed @75.5k
  • ECS Dogbone mount insert installed @75.7k
  • NS column pod boost gauge installed @75.7k
  • Unitronic Stage 2 HPFP installed @75.7k
  • Battery @77k
  • AC compressor, expansion valve, receiver replaced @78k
  • Drivers door latch actuator replaced @78k
  • Headlight rear auto leveling wire loom fixed @85k
  • Timing Belt and water pump @90k (Coolant flushed)
  • Thermostat replaced @90k
  • Intake valve clean (walnut blast) @90k
  • CV axles: both outside boots replaced and re-greased @90k
  • Passenger door actuator replaced @90k
  • Trunk wire loom replaced @90k
  • Thermostat replaced (2) @92k (1st replacement leaked, Coolant Flushed)
  • Battery @98k
 
Last edited:

jimlloyd40

Autocross Champion
Location
Phoenix
Car(s)
2018 SE DSG
2018 SE with 123,000 miles and the only problem was the thermostat housing leak which fortunately happened while under warranty. All highly tuned miles also.
 

launchd

Drag Racing Champion
Location
New York
Car(s)
2018 GTI, 2021 A7
I've owned my car for about three years now... this is how well it's held up. Pretty good return on my investment if you ask me.

1617201432536.png
 

PRRGG1

Go Kart Champion
Location
USA
2018 SE with 123,000 miles and the only problem was the thermostat housing leak which fortunately happened while under warranty. All highly tuned miles also.

I don't want to take us off topic, but if my new '21 GTI develops a thermostat housing leak someday, is evidence visible from above or would I need to remove the belly pan to see it? I'm assuming that coolant loss led you to look around? Thanks.
 

Dog Dad Wagon

Autocross Champion
Location
Innnnn West Philadelphia...
Car(s)
19 Alltrack 6MT
I don't want to take us off topic, but if my new '21 GTI develops a thermostat housing leak someday, is evidence visible from above or would I need to remove the belly pan to see it? I'm assuming that coolant loss led you to look around? Thanks.

You smell it before anything else. You may notice minor white smoking. And you would likely be able to see from above.
 

SnailpowerMk7

Go Kart Champion
Location
NJ
Car(s)
MK7 GTI SE 6SPD MT
I feel like VWs can fit into similar crowds of those that enjoy Jeeps. It's like, you hear they have issues or even catastrophic ones but that doesn't stop people from buying them. So I'd like to think, they're worth the headache if you find yourself in one? 🤷‍♂️

I personally haven't dealt with anything catastrophic yet (knock on wood) on the mk7. I did find it odd that my brand new 2014 Mk6 GTI (last year of that generation), had a waterpump fail at 9k miles, lol. I'm like, damn, it's true. After that however, it never happened again. Oh yeah then my turbo failed at 33k miles a couple months after my warranty expired, lol. Perhaps my car had some bad build to the components?

I'm sure some cars are more reliable than others, but you have to ask yourself, do you want that other "reliable" car? I mean, get what you want and who cares. If you now you might have to deal with some issues to enjoy something more, go for it.

If you want reliable, sure, go with your Toyota Camry, have a blast in that thing. :cautious:
 
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