The Volkswagen Up is a small city car that was first unveiled back in 2011. The VW Up competes with the likes of the Fiat 500, and the Hyundai i10 because these two are similar in size, price, and market positioning to the Up. These cars are made to be driven around town, but they can also be driven on highways.
The VW Up seems to be a decently reliable car judging by the most well-recognized online reliability charts and surveys. However, judging by the latest statements made by VW brass, the Up is going out of production as is because this segment is likely going to be filled with either a solely electric VW Up, or a brand new model.
The most common VW Up issues are associated with the gearbox, airbag issues, electrical issues, clockspring issues, and bad ignition coils. Some of these are more problematic than others such as the ignition coil and clock spring issue while the airbag and electrical issues can be solved a bit more easily.
The VW UP is designed for low maintenance costs which means that maintaining it should not be all that difficult. Because the VW UP is primarily being used in the city, it means that most of these never manage to do all that many miles.
VW UP – Gearbox issues
The VW UP gearbox seems to be one of the most problematic components in the VW UP because it manages to accumulate quite a lot of potential issues. One of those issues is an intermittent power loss caused by the dual mass gearbox flywheel. These tend to occur while driving which is indeed an issue because the VW UP has little to no power to begin with.
If that does happen, be sure to take your car to a dealership in order to diagnose the issue correctly. Sometimes these can be due to many other potential reasons such as engine issues, or issues with the MAF/O2 sensors.
VW UP – Airbag issues
Many 2013 VW UP models have been part of a relatively widespread airbag recall because the side airbags were not properly programmed from the factory. This could lead to the airbags not deploying when necessary which increases the chances of significant injuries.
You need to take your VW UP directly to the dealership where the airbags can be reprogramed really quickly. VW even issued a nationwide recall because of this as it’s always dangerous when the airbags are not functioning properly.
VW UP – Electrical issues
The VW UP seems to be experiencing various electrical issues such as problems with the power windows, problems with some interior electrical switches and even issues with the exterior lighting. The VW UP is an affordable car which means that VW did not go to great lengths to make it as good as it can be.
This is rather obvious because the VW UP tends to suffer from all sorts of electrical issues soon enough. In order to fix these, you need to take your UP to the dealership where they will either fix the issue or replace the faulty components.
VW UP – Clockspring issues
No matter what you do and where you go, you are likely going to experience clockspring issues with a modern-day VW at some point. The clockspring issue is likely one of the widest spread issues modern-day VW models experience, but the real issue is that VW is not all that successful when it comes to fixing it.
Even after a recall, NHTSA states that there are more than 1.2 million cars still affected. This has prompted many aftermarket companies to develop aftermarket VW clocksprings which should either be able to last a lot longer or be a lot cheaper than those made by VW.
VW UP – Ignition coil issues
Problems with the ignition coils are also a common occurrence on many VW models including the VW Up. The issue here is that it’s difficult exactly which ignition coil is causing issues which means that many people opt for replacing all of them at once.
If you sense your VW UP is lacking power, is unable to start, is misfiring, or even stalling, there is a great deal of chance that the issue can be traced to faulty ignition coils. These issues should be even more pronounced while trying to accelerate quickly.
Is the VW UP a good car?
The VW Up is a lot different when compared to most cars on the current market because it is so small. Not many people are even interested in buying a car like the VW UP except for those who use it as a 2nd or a 3rd car specifically for city driving.
The reality is that the VW UP is far from being a car for multiple purposes, yet it excels in what it was made to do, and that is city driving. As such, if you need a city car, the VW Up is more than good. However, if you need a car that can do many things, the VW Up is not the one for you.
Is the VW UP going out of production?
You can still buy a VW UP, but it is not yet clear if the VW UP is going out of production or not, but it is clear that VW is likely going to reserve this segment from a fully electric car. The VW e-UP is already available, but the rumor is that the e-UP is going to be replaced with a standalone electric VW.
We will have to wait and see if that is truly the case, but for now, you can definitely buy a few different iterations of the VW Up.
Is the VW UP better than a Fiat 500?
The VW UP is lacking a bit behind the Fiat 500 when it comes to performance, especially if you go for an Abarth model. The 500 is more exciting, better-looking, and more stylish. As such, most people would prefer the Fiat 500 over the VW UP.
On the other hand, the VW Up is more reliable and it offers a more futuristic experience which could sway many buyers into the VW camp. All in all, both of these are interesting, but the Fiat 500 is just more interesting as a whole.