Maintenance intervals, technical specs, recalls for b4 1996-1997 passat tdi

  1. Fluid changes/maintenance intervals
  2. Technical Specs
  3. Featured equipment/safety ratings
  4. Recalls and Technical service bulletins

Did you just buy this car?  Here is a list of common issues that you should check: 1000q: mk3 new owner

Fluid changes/maintenance intervals

Maintenance intervals: above all else, refer to your owner's manual for more detailed specifications, warnings, and notices

Light bulbs: refer to light bulb replacement reference table

Available colors and touch up paint: refer to OEM paint codes

Engine oil:

Conventional oil: 5000 miles or 6 months, whichever is sooner.

Semi-synthetic oils: 7,500 miles or 6 months, whichever is sooner. 

Full synthetic oils: 10,000 miles or 6 months, whichever is sooner. 

Capacity w/filter change: 4.5 liters

Click here for engine oil list w/references

How to change your engine oil on the b4


Lifetime fill (100,000 mile) for g12/g12+ VW OEM fluid or Pentosin coolant, pink or red in color.

WARNING: DO NOT MIX OEM or Pentosin with ANY other color coolant or it will turn brown and sludge. If this occurs, you must flush the entire coolant system.

Mix with distilled water only, tap water will leave mineral deposits

Capactiy: 6.5L

How to change your antifreeze/coolant: b4

Brake fluid:

DOT 4 fluid, not compatible with only DOT 3 spec fluid or silicone based DOT 5

Every 2 years or as needed

How to change your brake fluid: b4

Clutch fluid

DOT 4 fluid, not compatible with only DOT 3 spec fluid or silicone based DOT 5

Every 2 years or as needed

How to change your clutch fluid: b4

Automatic transmission fluid: automatic transmission N/A as an option for North American b4 passat tdi

Power steering fluid

40,000 miles

VW# G002000 

To change, suck out the old fluid with a turkey baster and put in new fluid.  Drive the car, repeat.

Manual transmission fluid

Lifetime fluid (100,000 mile) change interval

Use API G50 75W-90 (OEM VW) synthetic gear oil or GL4 Mil-L2105

Fluid capacity for b4: 2.1 quarts/2 liters


How to change your manual transmission oil: b4

Fuel filter

20,000 miles replacement

How to change your fuel filter: b4

Timing belt

60,000 miles replacement

How to change your timing belt: b4 part 1    How to change the timing belt part 2

Air intake filter

40,000 miles or 2 years, whichever is sooner

How to change your air intake filter: b4

Cabin air filter

20,000 miles

How to change cabin air filter: b4

Brakes/rotors/rear wheel bearings

Front disc/rear disc, change as needed

How to change your brakes: b4 passat front brakes

How to change your brakes: b4 passat rear

Geneal FAQ and "how to" list: 1000 answered questions: diesel FAQ and "how to" index

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B4 technical specs


Engine hp 90@3750rpm Engine torque (ft lbs) 149@1900rpm
Engine spec I-4 Drive wheels front
Curb weight (lbs) 3009 Brakes disc
Fuel economy-auto N/A Fuel economy-manual 38/47
Fuel capacity (gal) 18.5 sedan, 24 wagon Est. highway range (mi) 869 sedan, 1128 wagon
Body style  4 door, wagon Misc. info


Length (in) 181 Wheel base (in) 103
Height (in) 56 Max seating 5
Front head room (in) 39 Rear head room (in) 37
Front leg room (in) 45 Rear leg room (in) 37
Luggage room (cu ft) 14


Performance Data

Acceleration (0-60 mph): 11.6 sec. Braking Distance (60-0 mph): 131 ft.
Road Holding Index: .79 g Base Number of Cylinders: 4
Base Engine Size: 1.9 liters Base Engine Type: Inline 4
Horsepower: 90 hp Max Horsepower: 3750 rpm
Torque: 149 ft-lbs. Max Torque: 1900 rpm
Drive Type: FWD Turning Circle: 35.1 ft.

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Standard equipment/features


Standard features

Bucket Seats Center Console
Power Heated Mirrors Power Brakes
Rear Window Defroster 1.9L Turbocharged Diesel I4 SOHC 8V FI Engine
14 Inch Wheels 5-Speed Manual Transmission
Tachometer Driver and Passenger Front Airbags
Anti-Theft Alarm System Cloth Seats
Cruise Control Power Steering
Remote Trunk Release Tilt Steering Wheel
Air Conditioning Intermittent Windshield Wipers
Power Windows Power Door Locks
Daytime Running Lights AM/FM/Cassette Audio System


Exterior Colors

Black Magic Pearl Metallic Candy White
Emerald Green Pearl Metallic Red Pearl Metallic
Satin Silver Metallic Storm Gray Metallic
Tornado Red Windsor Blue Metallic
Safety Features

Antilock Brakes: Optional Four Wheel Antilock Brakes: Optional
Depowered Airbag: Information Unavailable Passenger Airbag: Standard
Head Airbag: Not Available Side Airbag: Not Available
Child Safety Seats: Not Available Traction Control: Not Available
Stability Control: Not Available
Crash Test Results

NHTSA Ratings  
Passenger: Good  
Driver: Good  
Side Impact Front: Not Tested  
Side Impact Rear: Not Tested  
Rollover Rating: Not Tested  
NHTSA: Excellent, Good, Average, Poor, Very Poor, Not Tested
IIHS Ratings  
Crash Offset: Poor  
Bumper Bash: Marginal  
IIHS: Good, Acceptable, Marginal, Poor, Not Test



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1996 Passat

1997 Passat

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