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Hey guys! i currently drive an 06 VW Passat 2.0T. I got it new and ive had it since and even though it wasnt garage kept it was babied. Now at 150K miles it feels tired and after the past 3 years ive sank 2-4K in maintenance and repairs. I think its time for a new car...a newer one at least.

considering its almost 2017, i was willing to go for something no older than 2013. it seems most 2013s with 30K are listed for $15K in the premium range. Id prefer to get a premium model so i dont feel like im downgrading from the current driver which has leather heated interior, nav. etc.

i thought i found the dream volt 2 weeks ago but 2 days later the dealer relisted it for 2K higher after talking to him. (not sure why).

I guess im here to ask a few questions.

for 2013-2015...is there anything that tends to be a common issue with volts i need to look for in any i go test drive? VWs were notorious for peeling interiors, rust and rims that oxidize without being scratched. i went into looking at VWs knowing those issues...i guess knowing volts potential quirks may help me avoid a bad newer pick.

also have any of you had your brakes serviced? i cant seem to find straight answers because of the regen brakes...but since i am looking at used ones there no way of me of knowing if the previous owner drove like an ogre or was gentle with it. same question with the suspension....anyone here had it serviced yet?

i am really set on a volt...and im migrating from a community which seems to LOVE DIY jobs...volts seem to be less the kinds of cars you can tinker with and im just nervous over buying a used beat up volt that got a bit of spit and polish before being relisted for sale.

OH and lastly if any of you noticed anything anywhere rusting yet....especially on the older volts....where should i pay special attention to? also how much is a set of those OEM new tires cost? if i come across one i like and the tires are a bit worn out more than i feel comfortable with i can negotiate that bit off the listing price.

sorry for the scattered post...buying that passat i managed to make every big mistake a first time buyer makes...this time im trying to avoid some of the same and hoping to maybe avoid any others i dont yet know about.

LAST QUESTION....would you buy now...before years end...or at the beginning of the year. i know theres a difference between the beginning and the end of the month but dont know if the time of year also has any influence.

Thanks in advance!
 

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It doesn't matter if you drive like an ogre or not. Regen kicks in pretty strong and the friction brakes only engage during panic stops and at the very end of regen/braking. So you will hardly see any brake wear even with Jeff Gordon at the wheel. The only scenario I can see where you might get brake wear on a car with 30k miles is if the previous owner always put it in neutral and user full on friction brakes all the time.

One reason to get a 2014 or 15 over a 13 si that they came with slightly bigger batteries. GM never retested their EPA ratings but the Yu should easily get more than 38 miles of range in normal conditions.

No rust whatsoever on my 2013.

The issues I had with my volt:
- 1st year of ownership it was like an electromagnet, collecting flying debris (deer, rocks, stop signs) requiring 3 trips to the body shop Dan a new windshield (all separate incidents)
- software update to improve Bluetooth reliability
- software update to eliminate no heat condition that happened about once or twice a month
- anti-buffeting kit installed by dealer because of horrible pounding with any windows open
- recall replacement struts on rear hatch
- replaced passenger airbag sensor under seat due to "Service Airbag" warning with 75 miles left on B2B warranty

Another thing to looks for, check out the lifetime mileage on the dash. A small number means the iCE is heavily used. A Harte number means the ICE was barely used. My number is 70 MPG with a 50-65 mile commute and no charging at work.
 

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First of all, I'm glad you're getting a Volt. You will love it. I never regret the decision to buy this car, even with its occasional "quirks." It's been the most interesting car I've ever owned and has changed the way I view driving.

You will get the best deal in the last week of this month. Dealers and salespeople want their bonuses.

Depending on where you are--and how far you're willing to drive--you might still be able to scoop up a NEW '14 or '15 and then take the tax credit quickly early next year. Of course, the stock is very, very thin, so you'll need to forego colors and options that you may be interested in. Just take the asking price, subtract at least $2k for negotiating (if not more), and then another $7500 for the tax credit. You'll find the prices on NEW very, very competitive with used after that. You might be surprised if you can find a rare '16 also new.

A piece of advice--don't rely on the listed price on cars.com, autotrader, or other sites--especially on "new" older models. I've been shopping around for a NEW '14 or '15 and usually just the MSRP is listed on the website. Once you reach out to the dealer, you'll find that they may be asking 10K or more less! (I found a new '15 MSRP 39K, asking price $27K, as an example).

If you go NEW, you don't have to worry about the "issues" as they'll all be covered for the first 3 years under b2b, then another 2 for "powertrain" (which is silly), and then 8 or 10 years (depending on your state) on the VOLTEC system. We have not tested the limits of this VOLTEC warranty just yet. But I'm sure we will...

Going for used is a different animal as you need to follow all the "usual" rules for buying a used car and then the "UNusual" rules of buying a Volt. Things to look for is the lifetime MPG on the car, as that will tell you whether the gas engine was used more often than not. Many dealers don't even bother charging their volts, so you'll want to demand a demonstration that the car can take a charge and you'll want to try it at various charging stations FIRST to make sure it's had all the right updates.

You'll also want to check in the "trunk" or rear hatch for the EVSE (the stock charger that comes with the car). I bet quite a few Volt owners "forgot" to include that on their trade-in and it's doubtful every dealer would look for it. That could set you back $500 or so if you need to get a new one. That should absolutely be negotiated off the price of the car as it is standard equipment.

I would also make sure that the charge door opens and closes (if a '13 or earlier), that the maps are updated if it has NAV, and other items.

Finally, I would hesitate to get a Volt--unless it's a screaming deal--from a NON GM dealer. Why? Only GM's proprietary VOLTEC equipment can test the battery, run updates on the battery management software, etc. If it is a non-GM dealer, try to get them to agree to an inspection by a volt-certified dealership.

I hope you join the club and feel free to shoot back any more questions. There are a lot of friendly people who love this car and enjoy helping out other new owners.
 

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The 2013s and 2014s are nice - since the 2014s have been out for 3 years there should be a bunch of them coming off lease now. If you can find one that was made later in the year (maybe not off lease because they might already be 3 years old) there may be some original bumper-to-bumper warranty remaining (or you can by CPO). The other thing to take into consideration (I see you're in upstate NY) is that if you buy one from a CARB emissions state (such as NY) your battery warranty should be 10 years/150K instead of 8 years/100K.

As far as pricing - Lambert GM in Cuyahoga Falls OH has some good online pricing (at least for comparison purposes) and I think you can do even better than $15K on a loaded 2013. I was seeing $17K - $18K for loaded 2014s with NAV with 10K - 20K miles on them back in March. I'm not sure if waiting until January would help you much as the 2017s came out in March 2016 and the 2018s probably won't be out until August. Maybe the dealers will be running some end-of-year specials or something though. There are some dealers that are desperate to make deals at the end of the year, but of course some won't be, and that's often more with new cars because they're trying to hit targets set by the manufacturer to get bonuses.

I also saw a lot of dealers playing games with the pricing. I'd call them up a few hours after the price was reduced - they'd tell me the car was "sold" - then the price would rise by $1000 or $2000 and the car would still be on Craigslist and their website. I'd call the dealer on their bluff with a negative review and within 5 minutes I'd get an email that the buyer's financing fell through and that the car was available now. They're trying to figure out what price point they have to be at to get some interest but have no intention of selling the car for that amount. Wouldn't waste my time with a dealer like that.

Brakes - most people who drive like ogres probably would choose something other than a Volt. (have you ever seen a Prius being driven hard?) Carfax might list a brake job if one was done, but remember the Volt is going to go much farther than most other cars on a set of brakes anyway so it would be very strange to see a brake job on one of these with less than 30K on it.

Not sure what the OEM tires cost - but I'd figure $500 - $700 out the door for tires all around for tires this size.
 

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No rust whatsoever on my 2013.


Look under the driver's seat. I thought my 2013 didn't have any rust either until I looked there. Just surface rust as I understand it, no worries.

We have a 2013 Volt and a 2013 Passat. We got the Passat as a roomier car for longer trips with 4 people, plus my wife wanted a gas car (for some reason). They have both been good cars, no real trouble with either one.

While the Passat is nice to drive (ours has the 5-cylinder non-turbo engine, which I prefer over the 4-cylinder turbo version), I don't feel like I am stepping down at all when I drive the Volt. My first impression when it was new was that it felt like driving a small Cadillac. So smooth quiet and refined. Get one with the leather seats and seat heaters that has been well cared for and I think you will like it. Unlike some other hybrid vehicles, GM put decent size 17" wheels on it so it has a great feel on the road. Be prepared with a plug kit (it does have a tire inflator) because there is no spare tire. The one (rapidly deflating) flat I had I was able to repair in about 15 minutes and get back on the road using a plug kit (I also carry a jack from a Chevy Cruze). A multi-tool to pull out whatever caused the flat is also a good idea.

2013 Viridian Joule
Premium Trim Package
Enhanced Safety Package 1 & 2
 

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If your Passat is an automatic, better unload it before the tranny goes out. Stupid expensive and not rebuildable I've heard.
Be sure to check the electric heat in any prospective Volt! There have been issues, especially with 2013's, though mine's been flawless. Brakes are a non-issue. I have 59k on mine and all the pads look literally new. I'm expecting 200k on a set of pads. Suspension parts are pretty much standard, no surprises. Struts in front, standard shocks in back, typical GM lower control arm with non-replaceable ball joints, normal cv axles. Gen 1 Volts are tanks, nicely overbuilt solid cars. Mine's as tight and rattle-free as the day I bought it, with 21k on the clock. I would go with the premium, leather, Bose, and nav. I'm in the country, so collision alert, lane departure, back-up camera (actually that would be OK) aren't needed. Unfortunately, heated steering wheels were not available. Happy hunting!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
THANKS GUYS !

most of the ones i see relisted are between 2-3 hours away. there are a few closer offers but the passat is a black on black car and i swore i woudnt get another black leather interior as i felt like i constantly had to clean it so it doesnt look like it has crumbs and dust everywhere. these volts dont seem at all to have been made black with tan interior...which is odd...considering most car manufacturers would consider that the whole grail combo everyone wants... i remember BMW and mercedes calling that combo the highly saught after...especially the red with tan. in any case...no the passat was a stickshift...but the clutch is getting soft though it shifts like new still...i get 34MPG out of the 2.0T but lately its been getting city only and maybe 60 miles a week unless its a busy week...i screen print from home and just make runs to the post office and occasional trips an hour south for supplies etc....its why i figured the volt would be the best choice especially now that VW has taken a nose dive in the diesel department.

but yes back to the post....i wanted to ask you folks because the most likely outcome will be me driving a few hours to see a volt ...either jersey somewhere in PA or NY as i live in the middle of south central NY. That being said, the idea of driving hours and hours to look at a car only to find out when i get there that the dealer is not honest or the car is...undesirable sucks but its what you get buying used.

as far as buying new...i cant. 15K is my ceiling i still have student debt and i do not owe 7500K in taxes to really consider a new volt...but i do like the idea of mostly buying a used one straight up with money saved up/ old car money / a tiny loan from a credit union. im one of those weird breeds of younger people who detest the idea of any more loans and any more bank deals as ive just about had my fill of them so far.

i noticed i think 2 types of beige interiors...if i had to pick one id go with the jet black / beige 2 tone than the dark beige on light beige but like someone noted above ...i may not have the luxury. ill make sure its a GM dealer and see if i can get them to at least certify it on top of checking for the recalls. 12 months /12K miles isnt a great warranty but its better than leaving with none.

lastly i also noticed theres 2 styles of rims...is one better than the other? MPG wise i mean.
 

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I wanted the Pebble Beige (grey) interior too. If you want it in leather I believe the only exterior colors you could get were black, red, blue, white, brown starting in 2014, and Viridian Joule starting in 2015. In looking at hundreds of them I only ever recall seeing one black one and one blue one with the Pebble Beige interior, and even a lot of the red and white ones had black interiors. I'm really bummed that it's getting harder and harder to find cars without black interiors these days, and even the exterior color selections are shrinking in a lot of cases too.

You're smart for doing your research - most people don't realize they can't get the $7500 if they don't have that much federal income tax liability. I had plenty of dealers tell me "oh, it just comes off on your taxes at the end of the year." They had no clue.

The other thing you could consider (which I considered as well) to take advantage of the $7500 tax credit is leasing one, because then the leasing company gets the credit and it gets factored into the deal even if you're not personally eligible for it. Right now it appears that the 2017 Volts have a $4610 leasing incentive according to Edmunds and there may be some other stuff available. It looks like in NY state you may also be eligible for another $2000 rebate from the state of NY for a purchase or lease of a new hybrid - not sure on the details of that program though or if it has started yet.

Every state in the northeast down to MD and DE (except NH) is CARB so you'll definitely get the better battery warranty if the car is originally from PA or NJ.

If you go to a GM dealer and want your Volt certified I'm fairly certain only a Chevy dealer can do it and I think it's about $400. I bought mine at a Cadillac dealer and they told me they were unable to certify it even though they sold ELRs. Looking for a dealer with a good reputation helps as there are many dealers with mediocre reviews. I saw photos in the ads of some (at a Chevy dealer - with mediocre ratings) where the screen said "Service Stabilitrak." Really?? What I found is that most Chevy dealers had no Volts and there are a handful of dealers that specialize in Volts (they need to have certification to sell new Volts) and will have a selection of used ones in stock.
 

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Amount of miles on the odometer mean nothing to a Volt which has been drivin mostly electric. You may find an early 2011 or 2012 loaded with say 85,000 miles for under 10 grand. Since 80% of the miles are electric the engine is barely used. Just a thought. Be sure to get heated seats!
 

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If looking just for used inventory, I fount gmcertified.com to offer more options for searching locally as well as different inventory options--dealers still have to pay to get on cars.com or other sites and some don't. I also like the CARFAX app for mobile searching as you can look at the report. Just remember that a "no accidents" label doesn't mean 100% clear--I've had cars that WERE in insurance-reported accidents that strangely never made it to CARFAX. Do your own diligence.
 

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Buying used I'd want the newest/lowest mileage model I could afford with at least some B2B warranty left. That will give you time to consider if you want/need an extended warranty.

There is a vendor over on the Corvette Forum that sells the GM extended warranties for below cost. If buying from a GM dealer ask the service desk/manager if they will run a GMVIS report for you. That will show EVERY thing ANY GM dealer did to that car (warranty or not) since new.

Good luck, happy hunting and you will LOVE the Volt. Best kept secret in the automotive kingdom.
 

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as far as buying new...i cant. 15K is my ceiling i still have student debt and i do not owe 7500K in taxes to really consider a new volt...but i do like the idea of mostly buying a used one straight up with money saved up/ old car money / a tiny loan from a credit union. im one of those weird breeds of younger people who detest the idea of any more loans and any more bank deals as ive just about had my fill of them so far.
As greenback troll #1 I applaud your desire to pay off and stay out of debt, but you aren't attacking it with enough intensity. I would recommend getting a hoopty (only temporarily) that is ugly, but has extremely low miles for as cheap as you can get it, and take the money you've saved to pile onto your existing debt. Once that debt is gone, then pile up cash to buy your next car. And don't buy anything causes everything you own with a motor to be more than half your annual income. If you don't have any debt or any payments, and live frugally, you can easily replace that temporary hoopty with a nice newer used car. Just be weird and resist the temptation to get stuff before you can afford it - and by afford it I don't mean what the dealerships and finance companies will loan you, but by paying cold hard cash. Keep up the great work, you'll get there. Just keep that goal in sight and you'll retire a millionaire (as opposed to most of America who's retirement nest egg was consumed by brand new cars every few years and all the toys needed to keep up with the jones's
 

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Where upstate are you? I'm in Rochester. I have a 2013 also. Get the buffeting kit in the deal and make sure the heat works, park it for 10 minutes then turn the car on and see if the heat still works. Both times on electric.
 

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As greenback troll #1 I applaud your desire to pay off and stay out of debt, but you aren't attacking it with enough intensity. I would recommend getting a hoopty (only temporarily) that is ugly, but has extremely low miles for as cheap as you can get it, and take the money you've saved to pile onto your existing debt. Once that debt is gone, then pile up cash to buy your next car. And don't buy anything causes everything you own with a motor to be more than half your annual income. If you don't have any debt or any payments, and live frugally, you can easily replace that temporary hoopty with a nice newer used car. Just be weird and resist the temptation to get stuff before you can afford it - and by afford it I don't mean what the dealerships and finance companies will loan you, but by paying cold hard cash. Keep up the great work, you'll get there. Just keep that goal in sight and you'll retire a millionaire (as opposed to most of America who's retirement nest egg was consumed by brand new cars every few years and all the toys needed to keep up with the jones's
Bravo sir. Bravo.
 

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I was up last night rather late and found this. It sems fully loaded unless I'm mistaken and its a 2014 which means bigger battery ? It does have the black interior and I was hoping for the AFJ but oh well.... https://www.cars.com/vehicledetail/detail/684718362/overview/
Any thoughts ?
It is unlikely this has the larger battery. Usually VINS beyond EU166 (give or take) were fitted with the 17+ kWh battery. However, 2014 allowed greater use of the battery, even if you have the 16.5. You'll likely get around 11.0 kWh usable, and maybe 11.2 with the larger battery so not a significant difference.

I can't tell if the car has NAV (I like to look at the picture of the console itself, not really on dealer representations--the often claim that "turn by turn" with OnStar = NAV -- it does NOT). However it has SP1&2. I think it's a little overpriced, but a nice looking white volt.
 
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