Table of Contents
1. The Samba
The Samba (yes, “The” is included in its name) is one of the oldest and most well-known Volkswagen forums on the internet. It’s not just a forum—it’s also a marketplace complete with parts and vehicle classifieds.
And although it specializes in Volkswagens, there’s also a sizable Porsche community on the forum as well. Membership on The Samba is free, and it’s basically a requirement for classic Volkswagen enthusiasts with an online presence at this point.
The Samba first appeared on the internet around 1996 and has operated continuously for nearly 25 years. That makes it one of the most well-established forums on the web—let alone in the Volkswagen world.
The Samba is most well-known for being a Volkswagen Beetle forum, though it’s also known for VW Busses, Westfalia campers, the VW Golf, and other popular vehicles. The forum is primarily aimed towards classic Volkswagen collectors, owners, and automotive enthusiasts.
So, what can you find on The Samba? Just about everything VW or VW-related. Pretty much everything that can go wrong with an air-cooled Volkswagen has been discussed and solved over and over again on this forum, and the community constantly grows and discusses new topics.
The Samba forum has 17 primary Volkswagen categories and two Porsche categories. Here’s a full list of the Volkswagen and Porsche Forums where much of the discussion takes place.
The Samba is the perfect online Volkswagen community for classic Bug enthusiasts and owners. It’s one of the best peer-to-peer parts networks for rare Volkswagens on the internet and a great place to find meetups and like-minded VW enthusiasts.
2. VWVortex Forum
VWVortex is a popular Volkswagen forum operated by VerticalScope, Inc and based out of Canada. This forum has a unique design that isn’t nearly as blocky as classic forums designed in the 1990s.
And like The Samba, the primary purpose of this site is to provide a place for VW enthusiasts to share information and swap how-to’s, have discussions, and communicate in various ways.
The VWVortex forum has 50 categories for Volkswagen vehicle discussions and dozens of additional categories for Audi, Lamborghini, Bentley, Bugatti, and more. There are also technical and how-to forums. Here’s a full list of Volkswagen topic categories on the VWVortex forums.
They also have a general forum called the Car Lounge and a fairly extensive classifieds section with the same general layout as the forum. The site has a good user interface compared to others, though users of classic forums may need some time to get used to it.
As you can see, the VWVortex forum focuses primarily on newer and non-classic Volkswagen vehicles, for which there is an enormous following. Plus, membership on the VWVortex forum is completely free.
With much of the web dedicated to the classics, it’s nice to have a community that focuses primarily on post-1970s and water-cooled VWs of various types. Much of the modern VW community hangs out on this forum and others.
3. Volkswagen Forum
The Volkswagen Forum is another extremely well-established VW forum with thousands of members and tens of thousands of posts on all sorts of topics.
The Volkswagen Forum, which is run independently, was founded quite a long time ago and has garnered a reputation as one of the top Volkswagen communities on the internet.
The Volkswagen Forum is primarily a forum, but it also hosts a popular marketplace and image gallery. The forum has several primary categories, which include general discussion, a VW model section, a ‘Show Time’ category for aesthetic and interior mods, brand review, a racing section, and a forum for everything else.
The model forum covers virtually all popular Volkswagen models produced since the company’s post-war reboot. Additionally, a large amount of talk on the forum focuses on new and late-model vehicles, along with popular 80s and 90s models and the classics.
There’s plenty of discussion about repairs and modifications, along with less common categories such as detailing, audio, and visual electronics. There’s a large aftermarket parts review and discussion forum as well, which isn’t always available as a separate section on car forums.
The format of the Volkswagen Forum is in the traditional 1990s and early 2000s forum layout. This format is by far the most common in the automotive world, and it’s highly functional and familiar.
Most people can navigate these forums with ease and find the technical answer they’re looking for without much trouble. Like most other Volkswagen forums, standard membership is entirely free.
4. VW Forum
And who could forget the VW Forum itself? The VW Forum is one of the most popular forums for VW owners and enthusiasts of all types—both new and classic. The forum states that it’s dedicated to all Volkswagen models—both U.S. imports and foreign market VW vehicles.
The VW Forum covers a huge range of topics. This includes everything from technical discussions, modifications and aftermarket parts reviews, repair information, model lists, history, new model releases and speculation, performance, and good old general car chit-chat.
People work through complex repairs and swaps on the forum, often sharing photos and vital information that you can only know from someone who has done it. People troubleshoot cars, talk about warranties, pricing, and virtually everything else.
Interestingly, the VW Forum uses the same format as the sleek and modern VWVortex forum. This is because the same Canadian company (VerticalScope Inc.) owns and operates both platforms.
Due to the size of the forum, we won’t list all the available topic categories. However, we can give you a general rundown of the popular discussions on the site. There’s a massive general discussion forum with around 35,000 comments and nearly 10 million views, along with subcategories for MK1 through MK7 Volkswagens.
There’s a showoff community for people to share their custom Volkswagens, restorations, and progress on their projects, along with subsections for everything from wheels and tires to racing.
But what about the technical side? VW Forum has that too—and it’s scattered around under each sub-model category. Additionally, there are regional forums for the Midwest, Northwest, Southwest, Central, and other regions.
There are also international forums for areas where Volkswagen vehicles are popular, including Canada, Australia, Europe, and the rest of the world.
5. Volkswagen Owners Club
Here’s another popular Volkswagen forum with the same and unconventional layout as the VWVortex Forum and the VW Forum. The Volkswagen Owners Club forum is also owned by the Canada-based company VerticalScope Inc.
Membership on the Volkswagen Owners Club forum is free, and there are numerous discussion topics to choose from. The site has thousands of members and millions of page views.
The most popular sections on the forum are the Beetle Owners Club, the Air-Cooled Owners Club (which is a general discussion covering primarily classic Bugs and busses), and the CC Owners Club.
Other categories on the forum include owners clubs for the Golf, the GTI, the Jetta, the Passat, the Phaeton, the Polo, the R32, and more. The Volkswagen Owner’s Club is one of the only VW forums with a dedicated VW Rabbit section, which is likely due to the rarity of the model.
The Volkswagen Owners Club also has a TDI/Diesel owners club. Due to the forced recall of most VW TDI vehicles during the end of the 2010s, the vehicles have limited online resources. It’s good to see a forum with dedicated TDI enthusiasts and a solid (but small) discussion board on the topic.
The forum has a dedicated repair and service category as well. This is advantageous, as it helps concentrate discussion on maintenance and modifications to a section outside of the general discussion boards.
This is helpful because car forums often have their general discussion boards clogged with simple repair and diagnostic questions that have already been answered—often dozens of times—in separate topic-specific forums.
As you might expect, the Volkswagen Owners Club also has a classifieds section, which is divided into shopping and test driving, sponsors, and site member classifieds. There’s also a regional forum for local discussions, meetups, swaps, and events.
About The Author
Matt is a VW Master Technician since 2009 after proceeding through the ranks as a Team Leader and Shop Foreman. He has developed software to increase car dealership efficiency, managed 10+ techs, and instructed students at multiple high-performance driving events since 2011. He is also the lead mechanic, engineer, and driver for Blue Goose Racing.Read More About Matt Meurer