really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
70,162 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

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problem #8

Dec 182008


  • 101,345 miles
There was a brake switch short that caused the car to be stuck in park. So it had to be dragged out and was sent to Volkswagen service.

- Plainfield, IL, USA

problem #7

Jul 212007


  • Manual transmission
  • miles
2002 VW Golf with cruise control problem customer states that the car accelerated into fifth gear when she took her foot off the brake* the consumer determined that stepping on the brake did not disengage the cruise control. The consumer stated the following day, when he backed his vehicle up to the garage door, he noticed the brake light/ stop light did not illuminated when he stepped on the brake. The consumer believed the failure was the root cause for the cruise control's failure to disengage. The consumer took the vehicle to the dealer and upon inspection it was determined that the replacement brake light switch that had been installed previously under recall was defective.

- Rockville, MD, USA

problem #6

Dec 192006

Golf 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 103,100 miles
Brake lights on my 2002 Volkswagen Golf all failed to operate. VW dealer (classic Volkswagen in escondido, ca) determined the problem was a defective brake light switch. VW dealer replaced the brake light switch.

- Escondido, CA, USA

problem #5

Dec 242006

Golf 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,000 miles
- the contact's vehicle would not go into gear. The contact had the car towed to the dealer, and they told him that he had a faulty brake switch which kept the car in park. The dealer told him that their was a recall O for this problem, but this vehicle was not included due to VIN. Updated 02/16/07.

- Kearney, NE, USA

problem #4

Nov 302006

Golf 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 146,000 miles
All brake lights inoperable. Bulbs are fine. This will lead to an accident where the car is rear ended. There is an existing recall, NHTSA campaign id number : 04V096000 however, it applies to the 1999 to 2002 VW jetta only. I drive a Golf, which is not covered by the recall campaign, however uses the same parts.

- Lake Hiawatha, NJ, USA

problem #3

Sep 162006

Golf 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 57,850 miles
I have a 2002 VW Golf, the brake light switch on my car has broken 4 times in the 4 years I have owned this car. The last time it hs happened my car wouldn't shift out of park and I had to get my car towed. Each time the brake light switch was found to be faulty and it was replaced. This is a very frustrating problem and its very time consuming. I believe that Volkswagen needs to do something to correct this problem.

- Melbourne, FL, USA

problem #2

Jul 092002

Golf 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,998 miles
The brake light switch on the Golf is the same brake light switch on the jetta. They have the same part number and everything. They also fail at the same rate, but only the jetta brake light switch was recalled. When it fails, you cannot get the car out of park and your brake lights work intermittently, which is a safety hazard.

- Yukon, OK, USA

problem #1

Jul 202003

Golf 4-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,000 miles
Brake light and automatic transmission safety interlock switch failed and left the car stranded.

- Dulles, VA, USA