Written on: 18/11/2003 by ndixon (1 review written)
Nice looks (in my opinion), which haven't dated. Looks equally good as a saloon too.
Reassuringly quick (especially when overtaking).
Firm and comfortable seats.
Big, well-shaped accessible boot.
Quality feel to the controls.
Engine is harsh, and prone to stalling.
Clock can be difficult to read in daylight.
Centre-console arm-rest lid is a little too long.
Bought this privately from the in-laws, who now have the same model with a TDCI engine.
At 2 years old with 25,000 miles it's had no faults apart from the air-recirculation switch apparently not working. Mechanically everything is sound.
The engine is harsh and noisy, but no more so than modern VW engines. It's also surprisingly quick, considering the weight of the car.
It is prone to stalling when moving off, requiring the sort of throttle-poking clutch-slipping driving style normally associated with petrols.
That could be more to do with pedal cables and emissions controls though, because once on the move, it can pull smoothly from 1,000rpm.
Generally the interior does have a quality feel: tidy layout, firm springs behind the switches, that sort of thing.
But some of the silver plastic looks tacky, and the clock can be difficult to read in daylight (silver/translucent hands on a white face), and it's oval shape doesn't make it any easier ("is that five past or ten past?").
The centre-console arm-rest is welcome, but has quite a long overhang, which I find gets in the way when I go for the handbrake.
And the CD jewel-case holder inside the storage box comes out far too easily (still attached to a jewel case) and is then fiddly to put back (it was soon thrown into the passenger footwell in disgust).
These are small details, though.
Overall it's a very comfortable car to sit in for 2-3 hours, feels nippy and safe at the same time, has a nice spec for this trim-level, and the boot shoud be big enough for most people.
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