Strengths: Luxury appointments.
Attention to detail.
Fantastic boltered, heated racing seats.
Aaudi Quattro AWD
Fasy, fast, FAST, and a "sleeper" too
Lots of cargo space.
Easy to service engine.
Awesome guage cluster.
Sweeeeet stock stereo.
Climatronic climate control.
Red-digitized on board computer feedback system.
German engineered AND manufactured unlike other VWs.
Scarity and uniqueness.
A FAR superior car than the 2008 release in almost every aspect.
Weaknesses: No rear spare tire.
Fuel mileage isn't great, but good for a very torquey V-6 powerplant.
No CD changer.
No ipod adapter.
Summary: I LOVE THIS CAR!! Being from Anchorage Alaska, it seems like "everyone" who drives a performance car all year round up here (except for the 6 months without snow) drives an Evo or STI because they offer AWD. I must admit, that I'd been salivating over an STI for some time now, and had almost completely forgotten that before I left Oklahoma to move to Aalska in 2004 I had been reading reviews about Volkswagen's new R32. How there was only 5,000 made and what a sweet ride it sounded like. It was European, not Japenese, and alhough not as fast as the Evo or STI, it was to be produced for only ONE year. It was also a Volkswagen and a 2-dr. (I've owned 5 cars and none of them have EVER had 4 doors). Well... I was looking for a new job, and got hired here in Anchorage at Porsche, Audi, VW, and to my utter SHOCK, there, sitting in bright Tornado Red, directly in front of the store was a sparkling VW R32, the likes of which I had NEVER seen in person, and to be honest, had completly forgoten about. Instantly, I new it would be MINE. I'm in to fashionable, rare, stylish, unique things (and sports cars) so this R32 fit the bill perfectly. As you can imagine I lusted after a Corrado as a youngster. Well, even before my urinalysis results came through, I bought the car to replace my aging jade green 1995 Eagle Talon AWS TSI. A GREAT car, especially in the winter here, but also one with 161,000 Alaskan miles on her. It was almost as if destiny had landed smack in my lap. My R32, heretofore to be referred to as "Scarlet" is a JOY to own AND drive. There are only 2 R32s in this entire city of 300,000. In fact 0nly 10% of the 5,000 R32s imported into N.A. in 2004 were manufactured in red, meaning that as far as colour is concerned, my car is one of only 500 or less still in existence in N.A. I was VERY pleased to learn that! Also, although the spec sheets list the VW's engine at 240hp, it is actually IDENTICAL to the one used in the Audi TT and produces 250hp!! Check out on Wikkipedia, and/or dig deep on the Internet if you're skeptical. :) At the last minute, VW opted to use the TT's engine to reduce production costs. So all you MkVers aren't receiving a stronger power plant. It is THE SAME. The seats in my car are the best looking I've ever seen in a car of it's kind. When I open my door in the morning, all I smell is quality leather. The interior is opulent in comparison to either the Evo or STI, and I LOVE the indigo and red lighting inside at night. The ergonics are GREAT. Everything falls right to hand, with the exception of the parking brake being a bit too close to the seat. The cup holders are awesome. There's 2 different sizes (as well as two small ones in the glove box, maybe for a drive in movie). More importantly, one of them is large enough to perfectly hold my ubiquitous litre bottle of Aquafina, which is hard to believe (no more bottle rolling around on the floor!) I especially enjoy the Monsoon sound system! It REALLY THUMPS, and the sound quality is FANTASTIC! Since 2004, VW has pulled the Monsoon, and been installing worse sounding audio systems in their vehicles, again to cut cost. Although the 2008 version has 2 more speakers, I've heard it sounds worse. Besides the magical burble from the exhaust at around 4,000 rpm (especially in 3rd gear) is music enough for the ears. This car is VERY fast, (0-60mph in 5.8 secs/Motortrend) and has impressed everyone I've given a peppy little ride in. The handling is stellar as well. It's better to simply keep your foot planted in turns, then to let off the gas as this will make the nose start to come around just a little before the rear tires dig in and take over. If you want a little adrenline rush, DO the latter. Braking is better than most super cars, even surpassing the Ferrari Enzo (108ft!) Her engine is well laid out and very easy to service. I love the way the lights inside come as soon as you turn off the engine, as well as the way the daytime running lights shut off when the parking brake is pulled. I also like that as soon as you hop inside the dark the interior and shut the door the interior lights remain on until you turn the key, allowing you, your passengers and their belongings, to get properly situated for take off. I also like that the radio continues to play until you remove the key. I LOVE the heated seats (bottom AND back), rain-sensing wipers, auto dimming rearview mirror and heated mirrors. I like the external temp. guage and Climatronic. I also love the large rear cargo area with fold down seats for increased hauling capacity. Oh, and how could I forget the sun/moonroof as well. WHAT A CAR, and soon to be a collectors item as well! The only negative things I could possibly say about this car is that it has no spare tire (to save weight)however, I purchased the extended warrantee, and thus have VW's free Roadside Assistance Program. Tires are spendy, as well, and fuel mileage isn't a strong point.
Similar Products Used: 1996 Red Honda Prelude V-tec.
Strengths: Smooth torque, laser-like handling, fantastic interior, melodious exhaust note, stealthy factor (only true enthusiasts even know what this car is rolling down the road).
Weaknesses: Rattles developing in interior, already a couple strange intermittent electronic glitches, terrible monroe stock shocks which bottom out too easily and are wallowy- a little bit compromising to the handling
Summary: Refined Rocket! This car is a complete blast to drive. I feel that handling is the best strength. I had a chance to drive it on the St. Louis VW club's Spring drive, challenging my driving abilities and the car's like never before. It doesn't understeer at all...it just pivots around the turns, and continues gripping when you think you'll give up first. It has freight train like torque. And the exhaust note as noted by everyone else is wonderful. Just drive with the windows down and no stereo on. The steering, while a little light at center, does transmit the texture of road surfaces nicely. I feel like I'm driving the best performance car for the money on the road presently!
This past winter, with ContiExtremeContacts on it, the car was great in the snow. Find an empty large lot, turn off the esp, and have a donutting ball. :) I hope to have this car for years to come.
Similar Products Used: Wrx (felt like a toy by comparison), Acura RSX type S(great car, but no awd), '91 BMW 325ix (nice car, but waaaayyyy too many repairs to afford keeping).
Strengths: silky smooth V6 with good torque
Weaknesses: little chubby
NO HID' S usa didnt get em
thats it!!! seriously
Summary: Excellent...Remind's me of the 99 M3 ...Torque is what this car's all about.The second you step on the throttle....it's present. The vibe you get from this car is quality. The interior and exterior are classy, while staying true to sport. The steering wheel should be studied by all car companies. I just love driving this car!!! My roomate has an STI....the car is damn fast, but looks goofy ( can't deny it) and while smmother than alot of turbos...is still notchy...the R32's exhaust is mean...porsche like...unlike the mechanical sounding subie/mitsu...
Strengths: Motor: pulls hard all the way to redline
Exterior: European class
Interior: More class
Cruise control: Never thought it would be useful in a manual but comes in handy to save the drivers licence!
Weaknesses: Rear legroom - only room for 2 short people
No spare - just a repair kit!
Boot is OK for 2 peoples weekend luggage only.
8 speaker sound system is adequate but nothing impressive.
Pedals look awesome but are slippery with wet shoes
Summary: Gidday from Oz!
We just got 200 of these gems in Australia and as luck would have it I got my hands on one!
I was also in the market for the usual STI, Evo etc but being a VW fan from way back decided to give the R32 a try. Sure glad I did, this is one awesome car.
I'm still trying to run it in and even when I can control the throttle foot the car pulls hard with such little effort. It's also easy to handle in low revs and easily plods around in 5-6 gear at 60km/h (40mph?) and will pull well from here to...well I haven't pushed it to the limit yet! I read it described as the mature man's boy racer, which I think is spot on. If you're looking for a car that feels like a luxury car but has you grining ear to ear when you crank it up then this is the car. We have a lot of crap roads here and I was very worried about how rough the car would be, no worries though the ride is ultra firm but the car handles rough bitumen effortlessly. Mind you on a test drive I did hit a pot hole and thought I'd left a diff behind. I had to stop and check, no apparent damage. The seats are amazing, very supportive but they are huge so even though the back seat is comfy there is no rear legroom but room in the front is typical VW - built for those big Germans.
Having taken a few of the turbo competitors for test drives there was no choice for me. The turbo gives you that unpredictable whoosh which feels nice but the R32 gives you constant pull in any gear through 0rpm to redline which I find is more satisfying to real driving. That is what this car is about, it's a heavy thing so if you only want to drag from lights then it's a waste of money, this car is designed for touring and corners. The 4motion and ESP system is also amazing, with it turned on you just can't lose the car but the threshold is set so high that you can get some wheel spin powering into corners without it cutting in. I think it will be quite a few car repayments before I am game to turn it off!
I was tossing up between the blue and black, the blue is a great colour but I ended up with black which is nice as it makes it more a "sleeper". Mind you VW fans go nuts when seeing it and I was kinda proud when a Ferrari crept up behind me with the driver having a good perve at the car (or was it my girl).
Conclusion? It's the ultimate VW and is up there with any of the competition. If you want the M3 feel for a fraction of the price this is the car. If you want a go cart then you can't beat the standard WRX and safe some cash (sorry Subbie fans, I love the Roos too but this car is just more class) Oh if you need more room and can handle a little less performance then try the 6 cylinder Subaru Liberty wagon.
Similar Products Used: Subaru WRX - still a good car
Subaru Liberty 6 cylinder - Great car when I'm a little older