In-depth Reviews

Volkswagen Phaeton owner reviews

"You won’t notice many Volkswagen Phaetons on the road – yet this luxury limo could be worth a closer look.”

Carbuyer Rating

2.0 out of 5

Owners Rating

4.4 out of 5

80%of people would recommend this car to a friend.

Owner Rating

  • 9reviews
  • 4reviews
  • 1reviews
  • 1reviews

Common Problems

  • Electrics (2 cases)
  • Other (3 cases)
  • Brakes, Electrics, Other (1 cases)
  • Electrics, Engine (1 cases)

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

3.0 V6 TDi

Year of registration

2009

Average annual mileage

More than 20,000

Owned

3 - 5 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

31
Review
In my 36 years since first passing my driving test, I have owned all of the top cars along the way, Jaguars, BMW's, Mercedes, Range Rover, etc. It is a fact that I have never owned a car better than the VW Phaeton. It amazes me that VW never really marketed this in the UK, as it is far better than the Mercedes S-Class, and BMW's 7 series, which is what it was designed to be. It is basically a Bentley Continental running on an Audi A8 LWB Quattro running gear, with a Bentley 6-speed auto gearbox dropped in to make the ride more refined. It has a VW badge on the front, which suits me fine, as I am not into this Golf Club snobbery, and I also get judged on the work I carry out for my clients, rather than the badge on my car in the company car park. If ever there was a car designed just for me, understated on the outside, but like a limo on the inside, with a ride to match ... then this is that car.
Reliability

5 out of 5

In 3 years of owning the car, travelling around 70,000 miles, i have had a set of tyres. I have also replaced the brake discs and pads once in all this time. It's reliability is superb.
Performance

5 out of 5

I am not a crazy driver, and I enjoy a relaxing drive, however, when I have had the need to ask it to pick up on the speed, a short drop down into the Sport mode on the gearbox, and you sink into your seat. Superb !!
Running Cost
If you weigh up the enormous saving you make because it is so undervalued, the fuel costs are nothing, and getting 31+ MPG is what you would expect from a car of this specification.

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

>3 litre, Petrol, Automatic

Year of registration

2005

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

Less than a year

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

21
Review
A FEW ELECTRONIC FAULTS BUT I EXPECTED THIS DUE TO THE AGE AND THESE WERE EASILY RESOLVED. APART FROM THAT THE RELIABILITY IS UNBELIEVABLE FOR A CAR OF THIS AGE.
Running Cost

3 out of 5

PETROL VARIANT SO HEAVY ON FUEL AND THERE HAVE BEEN A FEW TYE/ALLOY ISSUES BUT ONCE AGAIN THIS HAS BEEN PUT DOWN TO THE AGE OF THE VEHICLE. MPG IS POOR BUT I DID DISCOUNT THIS IN TO THE PURCHASE PRICE AS IT IS A VERY HEAVY LONG CAR

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

tdi, Above 3.0-litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

More than 5 years

Bought Car

Used

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

, 2.0-litre to 3.0-litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

15,000 – 19,999

Owned

Less than a year

Bought Car

New
Review
This is the most comfortable car i have ever owned and on recent 500 mile trips still felt refreshed at the end. the fuel consumption is much better than my previous car...an outlander. the downsides are that it is big when it comes to parking and i'm sure parts will be expensive when they go wrong but so far nothing has, it currently has 85000 miles. every journey is a pleasure.

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

2-3 litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2009

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

1 - 2 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

29.7
Review
Some warranty issues, all solved
Running Cost

4 out of 5

Tyre wear is high, otherwise good.

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

, 2.0-litre to 3.0-litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

15,000 – 19,999

Owned

Less than a year

Bought Car

New
Review
Very comfortable to drive, feel refreshed after 6 hours driving. More than met my expectations, although vw customer care could be better, not returning calls. Engine more than enough power and actually cheaper to run than my previous car....a mitsubishi outlander. Has been great in the recent snow..no sliding, loss of traction even though still running with summer tyres.

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

3 ltr V6 tdi

Year of registration

59

Average annual mileage

15,000 – 19,999

Owned

1 - 2 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

30
Review
Bought second hand with 131,000 on the clock. Driven 15,000 and still hasn't missed a beat. Very comfortable drive every time and I've not experienced any issues with it (yet). Servicing costs are reasonable for what it is and had no issues with VW garages as the one I use has a technician dedicated to the Phaeton.
Reliability

5 out of 5

Outstanding. No issues yet.
Performance

5 out of 5

For its size, the performance is great.
Running Cost
Reasonable for what it is.

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

3.0 TDi

Year of registration

2009

Average annual mileage

15,000 – 19,999

Owned

More than 5 years

Bought Car

Used

Typical MPG

34
Review
Fabulous car to drive, particularly on motorway. It really is a great environment to be in. Can chew through tyres if you go for cheap ones and also is likely to wear them out if you regularly push it through corners (it weighs 2.5 tons). Very little has gone wrong with the car and the servicing cost is very appealing. Mine is set up on long-range and does 20,000 or 2 years between services. I think the total servicing cost approaching 100,000 miles is £1,200. VW service is appalling for the value of car. BMW service is stunning (my other car is a 5 series). VW seem to treat you all as Polo drivers. I wouldn't buy another because I would never get the same deal again (£24.9k brand new). At the price it is stunning value. At full list price, I would be heading to the beemer dealer

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

2-3 litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2007

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

More than 5 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

31.5
Review
Very reliable so far. Just 2 problems with air bag switches
Running Cost

4 out of 5

VW Service costs are reasonable. And the VW service plan works well. Some components are outrageously priced. Iwas quoted Ł280 for vsmallmpiece of chrome trim.

Owner Review

3 out of 5

Version

2-3 litre, Diesel

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

5,000 – 9,999

Owned

More than 5 years

Bought Car

Used

Typical MPG

24
Review
under warranty had various items replaced, too long a list here
Running Cost

2 out of 5

not economical enough mpg, high insurance, high depreciation, likes tyres, servicing expensive

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

2-3 litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

3 - 5 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

31
Review
had the car for 4 years, serviced once a year, had no issues at all
Running Cost

3 out of 5

only issus is fuel cost, have got 40mpg on a long motorway run, only 28 on urban road

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

3.0 tdi

Year of registration

2009

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

Less than a year

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

28.9
Review
this is a superb car to drive ideal for motorways best car ive owned but very dissapointed with the vw garages

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

3 Litre TDI V6 SWB, Above 3.0-litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2010

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

Less than a year

Bought Car

Used
Review
Wonderful,beautifully built car with engineering integrity. Like the way it stays "under the radar " for most people. This is my second phaeton. First one bought new in 2006. 50,000 absolutely trouble-free miles. Collected this new one in march 2010, direct from the impressive " glaserne manufaktur " in dresden. Vw uk were very supportive and helpful.

Owner Review

2 out of 5

Version

TDi, 2.0-litre to 3.0-litre, Petrol, Automatic

Year of registration

2005

Average annual mileage

5,000 – 9,999

Owned

3 - 5 years

Bought Car

New
Review
The car does not, unfortunately, live up to the manufacturer's hype ! There has been recurring paint problems, an unexpected and expensive repair to the power assisted steering. The power assisted bootlid is temperamental. The dealers such do not know how to treat customers who would spend this sort of money on a car (they lag well behind lexus in this regard) but vw is probably not alone in poor service.

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

3.0 TD

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

1 - 2 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

35
Review
I own a 3.0 litre TD VW Phaeton and also two Audi A8, I am also an Audi master technician, and have to state that the phaeton out beats Audi for reliability and holds the road extremely well, as for Mercedes and BMW I personally would not want to own one .
Reliability

4 out of 5

I own a 3.0 litre TD VW Phaeton and also two Audi A8, I am also an Audi master technician, and have to state that the Phaeton out beats Audi for reliability and holds the road extremely well, as for Mercedes and BMW I personally would not want to own one .
Performance

4 out of 5

For a big car the VW Phaeton has exceptional performance and handling.
Running Cost
running cost average about 35 to 38 mpg maintenance cost minimal due to being a master technician.

Owner Review

3 out of 5

Version

3.0 litre deisel

Year of registration

2004

Average annual mileage

15,000 – 19,999

Owned

More than 5 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

36
Review
I have previously owned top of the range S class Mercedes and other top marques, this was the most impressive car it was comfortable smooth and generally reliable for the first 5 years or so. During my ownership I put over 110,000 on the car, I had the brake pads replaced twice and all the discs once at a reasonable cost of £400 at an independent servicing agent. Tyre wear was a persistent issue, I changed all four tyres three times in 6 years, until advised to add a few pounds more than the stated pressures. Things started to go wrong with unusual failures, the heater blower fan failed in mid winter, a power steering pipe rusted through causing a leak all fixed by my independent servicer at reasonable cost. The fatal problem started with a failed crankshaft sensor that caused rough running which was replaced and then shortly after the timing chain slipped and major internal damage occurred killing the car. It was regularly serviced but the faults all came within the last year of my ownership. I have found my replacement car lacking in the security of 4 wheel drive and good performance. I would recommend a Phaeton to others but be aware of the issues identified above and to reduce servicing costs find a trusted VW independent specialist. During the extended VW warranty period I had concerns on the quality of the work carried out at the routine servicing which was at top dollar cost. The worst example was when the brake fluid was renewed the mechanic failed to tighten the bleed nipple allowing brake fluid to escape when the pedal was pressed, I found this out on my front drive and turned out the VW recovery to fix and refill.
Reliability

3 out of 5

Too many big problems occurring within a very short period of time after 5 plus years of ownership.
Performance
A very quick car easy to exceed motorway speed limits without out realising. Due to the cars size and quietness there is no sensation of speed.
Running Cost
Good mpg for a large fast car.

Owner Review

3 out of 5

Version

2-3 litre, Diesel

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

5,000 – 9,999

Owned

More than 5 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

25
Review
There has been problems that I would not expect from a so-called prestige vehicle. Power steering, paint defects, power boot-lid problem
Running Cost

2 out of 5

High

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

2-3 litre, Diesel

Year of registration

2009

Average annual mileage

15,000 – 19,999

Owned

Less than a year

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

28
Review
Hazard light switch failed. Stone in brake caliper causing noise
Running Cost

3 out of 5

Being an executive model, parts are expensive. 3.0 TDI engine is not the most economical but is better than petrol models I previously owned

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

>3 litre, Petrol, Automatic

Year of registration

2008

Average annual mileage

15,000 – 19,999

Owned

Less than a year

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

23
Review
Typical VW reliability, everything beautifully constructed and finished.
Running Cost

2 out of 5

Naturally we pay a lot for petrol, servicing not bad

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

3l V6 TDi SWB

Year of registration

2011

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

2 - 3 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

29
Review
Best car I've ever owned. Easily. Extremely comfortable inside and a pleasure to drive. Insurance cost is surprisingly low although fuel economy is quite high but still manage 500 miles from a full tank commuting to and from work. It is a big car, no doubt, but never had a problem with parking spaces. From 2015 onwards it's been discontinued so looking for a replacement now but not many cars come close to the build quality and spec to be honest. Very few on the road and when people see it they stare or move over to let you glide past. And I do mean "glide". Only problem in 3 years is a broken windscreen from a large stone chip and the DPF filter which had to have a new sensor fitted recently. Gorgeous car inside and out.
Reliability
One problem with the DPF in 3 years which cost £200 to fix. That's pretty good going in my view.
Performance
Put it in Sport mode and it overtakes in seconds.
Running Cost

2 out of 5

Diesel costs are high but not unaffordable and on par with a car this size in this market sector.

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

>3 litre, Petrol

Year of registration

2003

Average annual mileage

0 – 4,999

Owned

1 - 2 years

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

12
Review
VERY GOOD
Running Cost

4 out of 5

ONLY TRAVEL 1200 MILES PER YEAR.ALL LOCAL SHORT JOURNEYS

Owner Review

4 out of 5

Version

2-3 litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2009

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Bought Car

New

Typical MPG

30

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

Fully loaded, 2.0-litre to 3.0-litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2007

Average annual mileage

5,000 – 9,999

Owned

3 - 5 years

Bought Car

Used
Review
Highly under-rated flying armchair. I have one niggling glitch with the telephone interface which has still not been sorted, 9 months after reporting the fault, otherwise perfect.

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

V6 3.2 Ltr LWB 4 MOTION AUTO, Above 3.0-litre, Petrol, Automatic

Year of registration

2006

Average annual mileage

5,000 – 9,999

Owned

1 - 2 years

Bought Car

New
Review
Best car ever. Comfort and ride quality 1st class. I would not drive any other car.

Owner Review

5 out of 5

Version

phaeton, 2.0-litre to 3.0-litre, Diesel, Automatic

Year of registration

2007

Average annual mileage

10,000 – 14,999

Owned

3 - 5 years

Bought Car

Used
Review
After owning over 125 cars , this is the best.

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