When was cambelt last changed? TDi belts needs changing every 60,000 or so at about £400. Plus brake fluid every 4 yrs. These are going to be about the same for most modern cars. Are you going for a diesel??
Although I have been with diesels since 1973 I won't always recommend them for everyone. They could let you down bigtime if not treated right, but the TDi is the best engine in it's class that I have met so far. Mine has 180K on the clock and still goes like a rocket, but change the oil on time if not earlier, and the Mass Air Sensor at £120 a time gets dirty and needs to be changed at 100K to attain peak performance. Fuel burn is 40+ mpg at all times except when towing and up to 55+ driven lightly in the summer. (Just had 70+ on the gauge with strong tailwind which means 64mpg corrected but that is unusual) Get a workshop manual, and read and learn the systems in the drivers handbook. When it says 'Get out of first gear before driving one car length' Do it! When it recommends changing up at 2000rpm for economy it does mean it. It will go like a rocket at 3000rpm but that will cost you in fuel so only do that every hour of so to blast the soot off the turbocharger. I set my personal rev limit at 3800rpm which is about 105mph in 5th which is quite illegal enough. And remember if you pull in after high power running the turbo will be red hot so cool it first with much reduced power for 2-3 minutes before switching off or the heat will soak back from the turbine disk to the shaft and cook the oil and the oilseals which means a replacement turbo.
So diesels are not suitable for boy racers, but will give reliable service at high powers for extended periods. How many points have you got on your licence? Maybe a petrol version will give you less speeding tickets.
According to reviews (MSN) Occasional problems on this vehicle includes failures of the Engine, Timing Belt, Mass Air Flow Sensor. A periodic problem on this vehicle is failure of the Ignition Power Stage, 1.8L engine only and the Water Pump. The good thing is, VW's after market support is reliable, they'll change any of your parts with no fee if they see it fit.
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