2007 Volkswagen Rabbit Review
The new, 2007 Volkswagen Rabbit is actually just the newest generation of the Golf. In fact, when the Rabbit was first introduced, it was replaced by the Golf which was, then, the second generation Rabbit. Whatever the name, this popular compact hatchback is back and better than ever. The Rabbit kicks – to be sure, you’ll get some bang for your buck. The Rabbit was America’s first Volkswagen, and is built in Wolfsburg, Germany. This worldly car has some (figurative) miles on it, and has only been improving over the years.
The BuyingAdvice Team Says:
Our biggest concern with the Volkswagen Rabbit is VW’s recent quality and reliability issues. If that problem has been solved, then the Rabbit can hold its own in a market chock full of worthy competitors. The Rabbit has an excellent range of features, more than many if its closest rivals, but until the quality data is in, we are reluctant to give it the endorsement that its design would otherwise merit.
In 2006 the Rabbit debuted with a 150-horsepower engine whereas its predecessor, the Golf, was equipped with only 115-horsepower engine. It has a standard CD player and front/side/head-curtain airbags. Now, in 2007, Volkswagen adds an auxiliary MP3 player jack for the sound system with an optional iPod-specific adapter. The cruise control system has been simplified and there is now an optional tire pressure monitoring system. It’s available as either a two-door or as a four-door hatchback model, and has new, rabbit-shaped badging.
What’s New For 2007:
What is the Predicted Reliability:
The Rabbit is too new to be able to gauge its reliability. However, the last generation Golf received only two out of five stars from J.D. Power for initial reliability. The previous Golf, sold from 1999-2005, suffered a number of electrical problems throughout its life, leading to a number of recalls. Historically, Volkswagen has had issues with electrical systems. Expect average to below average reliability out of the Rabbit. Volkswagen’s basic warranty lasts for four years or 50,000 miles.
Analysis Of Safety Ratings And Features:
Safety in the Rabbit is supplemented by front, side, and head-curtain airbags as well as an anti-lock braking system. In government crash tests, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the Rabbit four out of five stars in front crash tests and five out of five stars for side impacts. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the Rabbit its best rating for front and side crashes. Rear crashes were not tested. However, it is worth noting that in a compact car the size of the Volkswagen Rabbit, there is an inherent risk. The odds are that in a crash, the Rabbit will collide with a larger vehicle and incur more damage. Additionally, a smaller wheelbase makes it less stable. There is currently no recall data on the Volkswagen Rabbit.
Pros and Cons:
+ Larger engine than the Golf before it
+ Convenient hatchback
+ Excellent government crash test ratings
- Middling fuel economy for its class
- Unimpressive exterior styling
- Electrical system possibly problematic
The Hyundai Elantra GT, The Honda Civic, and the Saturn Ion are all contenders with the Rabbit in the compact economy car market. First, the Ion holds OnStar, an automatic transmission, and theft-tracking over the Rabbit but lacks the Rabbit’s traction control, side-impact airbags and anti-lock brake system (ABS). It does feature Saturn’s famous plastic dent-resistant side paneling. The Civic has child safety locks, better overall fuel economy, and Honda’s reputation for reliability, but a smaller engine, no CD player, no AC, and no traction control. And, finally, the Elantra GT offers standards leather seats and better fuel economy than the Rabbit, but lacks the ABS, traction control and engine size of the Rabbit.
What Others Are Saying:
“Unlike many of its competitors, whether Asian or domestic, the Rabbit is a hatchback and therefore offers the advantage of cargo-carrying utility not provided by the typical two- or four-door sedan design.” – New Car Test Drive
“So how does this Golf–er, Rabbit–drive? Very nicely…The electromechanical steering provides good feedback through the twisties and decent on-center feel on the freeway. The five-cylinder engine is smooth and makes good torque, but revving it to its almost diesel-like 5800-rpm redline is uninspiring.” – Automobile Magazine
“After spending a week in the German-built Rabbit, we’re convinced that all the whimsical stuff surrounding the renamed Golf is just a smokescreen. Because the little Rabbit is one substantial and serious small car that easily keeps pace with, and in some instances even outguns, such high-profile Detroit competitors as the Dodge Caliber and Ford Focus.” – DetNews.com
Read more about the 2007 Volkswagen Rabbit at the Volkswagen manufacturer web site.