What to look for in a 500, and what to avoid?

What to look for in a 500, and what to avoid?

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Discussion

Bobupndown

Original Poster:

1,907 posts

45 months

Friday 1st March
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My wife's current 2.0 Tdi VW Tiguan is approaching 190000 miles and getting a bit long in the tooth. Our kids are at an age where the youngest will be driving himself later this year so she's going to be doing way fewer miles and doesn't really need such a big car anymore. She likes the look of the 500. I know nothing about them but will be responsible for servicing and repairs as I do with all our cars.
So with this in mind what should we look for or definitely avoid with regard to engines and spec?

MikeA3

304 posts

199 months

Friday 1st March
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Not sure what your budget is OP but from my experience I can’t recommend them. I’d be looking elsewhere at the aygo/107/ Citroen c1 or the likes of a fiesta instead.

We’ve had one for nearly 6 months now (2010 with 45k) which we bought as a cheap runaround thanks to Mr Khan…. Ours is a 1.2 which is fine for town but if you’re doing longer drives the 1.4 might be better. They did a 0.9 twinair version too and a turbo diesel.

Aside from the knackered engine on ours which we’re speaking to the dealer about there are some common problems I’ve picked up from the various forums :

The wiring loom can crack where it joins the boot.
The plastic door handles snap off their fixings
If the start stop (2011 onwards) is playing up or the mileage is flashing then it’s new battery time.
The key fobs are made from the same plastic as the inside of a milk tray box and crack easily.
The suspension top mounts fill with water due to a design flaw so check these as they rust and the bolts sieze.
The rear beams like to rust too…as does most of the rest of the car from what I’ve seen on ours.
Check the heater blows properly hot air as the matrix can be expensive to replace.
The blue and me radio isn’t brilliant and lots of owners replace these with android / CarPlay units instead.
If you’re looking at a lounge spec (half glass roof) then check the seats as condensation forms on the glass and drips onto them.

Just rereading this and it does sound quite negative, the positive side of things is that they’re cheap to run, cheapish to insure, easy to park and bits aren’t expensive either.




cptsideways

13,578 posts

254 months

Friday 1st March
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Mrs has a 2018 1.2 lounge, apart from not pulling away without a brief de_throttle in 1st which no man alive can solve. The infotainment system is dross and nothing connects as it's supposed to. I can see why they changed for an Android unit.

If your over 6ft it's an awkward driving position, other than that it's been reliable, no issues at all, MOT pass no bother.

Bobupndown

Original Poster:

1,907 posts

45 months

Thursday 7th March
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Looked at 3 over last couple of days. All 500 S model 1.2s.

First was a 2015? Rusty around front and rear arches and drove like a dog with a distinct aroma of burnt clutch. Not prepped for sale, filthy and seats damp and mouldy!

Second a 2019, Looked lovely in photos, a bit grubby sitting outside on the forecourt but a clean and tidy car obviously, 32000 miles with good service history. Clutch failed during test drive. Owner came and picked us up very embarrassed. He's going to have it fixed and give us a call. Immediate thought was "no way" would we buy that but if its only a slave or master cylinder needs replacing its not a big fault but seems strange to fail at such low mileage. Suppose if its been sitting unused for a while it's not inconceivable that a seal has been a bit sticky and failed? Not completely ruled it out.

3rd was a 2018. 45000 miles. Very clean, couple of wheels scratched and a few minor blemishes which dealer was happy to sort. Of most concern was that at 45000 miles it has only had 2 services and had no oil whatsoever showing on the dipstick. I pointed this out to the dealer who basically shrugged and said he doesn't service cars until they are sold, and the low oil warning light (low oil pressure light?) wasn't on anyway. I assumed he'd go and get its oil topped up but no, happy for us to take it for a test drive like that with no oil. So no idea what previous neglect its suffered and continues to suffer. Lovely looking car but alarm bells well and truly ringing. Derisory offer of trade in price too. Its a no.