Volkswagon camper on the beach

Most Common Volkswagen Defects: What Should You Look Out For?

Volkswagens are classic. Their long-standing reputation for quality and style makes them a popular car choice. But the last thing you want is a bug in your Bug. 

With this in mind, it’s helpful to know the signs of common issues that crop up in Volkswagen vehicles.

Faulty products are often the result of a manufacturing or workmanship issue. Would you hang onto a cell phone that only worked half the time or only opened some apps? Not a chance! You’d have it fixed or replaced with a fully functional model. 

Car issues are no different, but they can feel more daunting to resolve. Vehicle express warranties don’t protect against every issue that could arise, and without a warranty, you have few options. You can’t exactly stride into a Volkswagen dealership and demand a replacement. 

Being aware of common brand issues can highlight the appropriate avenue for recourse when the vehicle you’ve paid for isn’t working as it should. 

A paying customer deserves a working product. That’s especially true when it comes to a vehicle, as some defects can result in injury or death. 

Name That Problem

Volkswagens have certain known recurring issues. Some of these problems show up with a notification in the control panel. Other issues can only be detected by monitoring the vehicle’s performance over time.

Common Defects in Volkswagen Vehicles

Your car’s dashboard is filled with colorful lights — some of which might be familiar to you. For instance, you know how to respond to a flashing gas tank warning. Other notifications can leave you scratching your head. 

Some of the most common Volkswagen defects that will trigger a warning on your console include: 

  • Check engine lights
  • Airbag lights
  • Clock spring failures
  • Wiring harness issues

A check engine light that won’t turn off is a known Volkswagen defect. In addition to being frustrating, this defect can cause other problems for you. For example, drivers in California usually need to pass a smog test before registering their vehicle with the DMV. A check engine light will result in an automatic failure of an emissions test. 

Volkswagen vehicles are also known for clock spring failures and wiring harness issues. Both of these electrical problems can trigger warnings on the dashboard, often in the form of an airbag warning. This safety concern can make it hard to be sure that your airbags are working properly.   

Defects Without Warning

If you notice that something is off with your car’s performance but no dashboard light has been triggered, you may be experiencing one of Volkswagen’s common mechanical issues, which include:

  • Oil consumption problems
  • Ignition coil failures
  • Front assist issues

These mechanical issues may begin subtly and worsen over time. Shaking, hesitation, sudden braking, and lost power are all issues that many Volkswagen owners experience. 

Sometimes, these concerns can be serious, like having trouble with front assist. If your vehicle starts to automatically apply the brakes while you’re traveling at a high speed, there’s a good chance that you’ll be involved in a serious accident.

Issues Known to Affect Specific Volkswagen Models

Some issues are known to affect specific models. The Volkswagen Jetta in particular tends to be the source of many consumer complaints. 

Here are a few of the common model-specific concerns to watch out for:

  • Radio issues (Jetta)
  • Fuel injector leaks (Atlas)
  • Tire failure (Jetta, Golf, Tiguan)
  • ABS failure (Golf, Jetta)
  • Oil sludge buildup (1.8L 4-cylinder engine)

If you notice something off with a Volkswagen that you recently purchased, you might have grounds for replacement, reimbursement, or repair under the California Lemon Law

You shouldn’t have to pay the price for manufacturer errors. If your Volkswagen is facing significant performance issues or known defects, it’s a good idea to speak with a knowledgeable product defect attorney, who can help you to explore your next best steps.

Don’t let a lemon sour your experience as a Volkswagen owner. Contact our office today.

For more information, call the experienced trial attorneys at (858) 259-5009 for a free case evaluation.


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