Remind me never to buy another VW, again

So we’ve been really good environmentalists for a long time…we have shared one car for almost three years. But for the last 8 months it’s really been just too much, I have had to spend half my life in the car ferrying the husband to work and the kid to school and to the tutor. Forget about having a life.

About a month ago we decided to buy a second car. We wanted something short, so we can fit it length-wise across the front of our house and still get our other car in and out of the driveway. We wanted something that sips gas. We wanted something that didn’t suck. And we wanted something cheap. So we looked and we looked and we struggled to even find anything to look at.

We looked at a one-owner Ford Fiesta that is in great shape and has low miles and is literally owned by a little old lady. It’s a short enough car, and gets decent enough mileage and we can afford it. The only problem is that it’s a Ford and it’s a Fiesta…which means that it has sucky visibility, it drives like a truck and it’s absolutely boring…”but it’s a good deal” says my husband. In short it sucks.

And then we looked at a couple of those little Chevy hatchback things, I think they have various names like, Pop, Swing and Joy depending on which important features they don’t come with. When you drive one of those little Chevys it makes you think that the Ford Fiesta is a high end car. Perhaps they should rename them Putt Putt, Swerve and No Joy. They suck too.

We were trying to avoid looking at VWs because we’ve both had several in the past and know exactly how unreliable they are. In fact the last car we had before our present one was a VW Pointer. The Pointer was fragile, unreliable and, up to that point, had been the worst car I’ve ever owned (besides a 1986 Jeep CJ-7 which could climb trees but rarely ran more than a month without breaking down). The Pointer had the amazing technicality that the steering wheel was not actually centered above the driver’s seat, talk about getting a backache from driving.

But after a month of looking we started wearing down. We started caving in and looking at VW Golfs. But all the ones we saw were overpriced and someone had altered the odometer. Then finally we found this Jetta. And we became fixated on this Jetta. We convinced ourselves that it made some kind of sense to buy the thing. I still don’t understand what happened. Something about it’s being a good deal, or having had one owner or some illusion that it was in good shape.

It’s too long for us to get the other car in and out of the driveway while it’s parked in front of the house, so now we are constantly out there shuffling the cars around to get the other one out. The car has a bigger engine than we need and uses too much gas. And it’s not actually in that good shape…

So I guess it all depends on what you call a good deal. Since buying it last Tuesday the following things have gone wrong with the good-deal-Jetta:

  • A rear bearing died, luckily the replacement was only $4 usd
  • One of the two mufflers died, hubby got someone to weld a straight pipe in it’s place and now the car is a little louder than before
  • The alarm failed and was going off every 5 minutes until we disconnected the whole thing, so now there’s no alarm at all
  • The locks failed and hubby got locked out of it for hours after working a 14 hour shift; hubby replaced one of the door handles but it’s got a different lock cylinder than the other one, so now you need TWO keys, one for the door and the other for the ignition
  • The glove box lock failed, I won’t even tell you how hubby fixed this one

The only thing I actually like about this car is that my husband can now drop my kid off at school. So I don’t have to leave my house every single morning…

Just pray for me that nothing else will go wrong with that hunk of junk out there!

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One Response to “Remind me never to buy another VW, again”

  1. JoyceJ
    May 15th, 2006 20:21

    I would love to here how Jeanine takes being referred to as a “little old lady”! Bummer about the ride, man, but I guess it’s something to talk about…

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