Originally Posted by kenneth
I think all makes have their problems and the higher end are no different. BMW is no different, and I have been reading horror stories recently about Porsches. It is well known that some Porsches develop premature cylinder scoring of the cylinders (first gen Caymans 2006-2008) and other 911s. This is more significant in terms of problems than the annoying ghoulies of the M3s CEL. Anyway, I am no longer sure I'll get a used Cayman after all.
As for VWs, many folks have had bad experiences. I for one have a different experience from what others report. I have driven over 500,000 kms on 4 VWs and I can tell you I am quite impressed with the low number of problems I have experienced, and in particular engine related. Yes, some parts need changing due to wear/tear (alternator, water pump etc.), but these were on cars that I drove over 250,000 kms. The engines are quite bulletproof. My 2002 GLI (VR6) has now over 230,000kms and I have changed brakes just once at 120,000 kms. The rear rotors are now a little rusty now, so I will be changing all of them soon, 230$ for parts all 4 corners (pads and rotors).
Ken, I agree. When you buy a german automobile you never know what you are going to get and in my book it is about preventive maintenance versus the threshold of pain & aggravation one is willing to put up with.
My wife's 2000 VW1.8T served us well for just over 12-years and it even saw some track time. Over the years, some stuff broke but overall the car was bullit proof. It was replaced by a 2010 VW GTI (my wife as an attachment to VW) and I'm hoping it proves as solid as the good old MKIV Golf. I'm in the market for an old 911 (I will spare you the details but Tony can fill you in on my obsession in getting the best deal possible), when I do pull the trigger it will be an air cooled 911 with the least electronics possible.