The 3rd generation Golf GTI stepped into the Golf lineage ready and willing to continue the brand’s legacy. She helped the series win European Car of the Year, and woke the world up to the powerful GTI engine system that had previously been the property of sports cars alone. Even though it puts the “hot” back into “hot hatchback,” the 3rd generation GTI still runs into some operating problems every now and then, including sensor glitches with the crankshaft, ECU relays, and ABS.
Because cars come with so many electrical components, sensors help make sure everything works the way it should, and many key components of a car—such as the idle speed, fuel injection control, RPM signal, and anti-lock breaks—rely on these sensors to function. Unfortunately, due to extreme weather, brake dust, and old age the sensors themselves sometimes go, and this can lead to some serious problems.
ABS sensor failure can result in locked brakes during an emergency stop, causing the car to spin out of control. A faulty ECU relay can distort the idle speed and mismanage the fuel injection, and your crankshaft sensor needs to function if the ignition timing is to help start the car. For most of these problems, a check engine light should come on, and this is definitely a time when that light needs to be heeded.
Ignoring these problems can lead to a massive disruption of your car’s components, and can seriously endanger you and your passengers. To ensure that your GTI maintains its full potential, take it to a trained German auto repair mechanic who can save you a lot of trouble, and perhaps your life.
Search for a local, independent Volkswagen repair shop with Volkswagen mechanics that have dealer-level expertise at a fraction of the expense.