really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,509 miles

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« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #36

Dec 062008


  • 87,000 miles
I purchased a 2002 VW in 2005. I had a car accident in Dec '08. Shortly after the collision place repaired my car. The vehichle started misfiring and essentially wasn't drivable. The control arm bushing were replaced $800 (at the VW place) and the service dept said that they would check fluids in particular the transmission fluid. I was told that the transmission didn't have the updated tranmission control module (tcm) and had to replaced ( $700 part and 300 labor) the service technican did state that this was the first step in diagnosing and correcting the problem and that that this was a known issue but not a recall. Well $1000 spent on this still did not fix the problem and now they say the next step is to replace the transmission on a car that has 87K miles another 4K. Well, I can honestly say that VW is unreliable and does not stand behind their name, product or reputation. This is shameful. I am very dissafied and learned that there are numerous customer complaints on the web related to transmissiion, tcm on the VW 2002 - 2006 model. VW should be held liable and compensate for this a defective/inferior product.

- Apex, NC, USA

problem #35

Nov 012008


  • 90,000 miles
I have a 2002 Volkswagen automatic tdi Jetta and the car will not engage when I shift it in reverse. It either rolls forward or just revs without engaging. I called the dealership and they said the transmission needs to be replaced and it is a common problem with 2002 Jetta's. it is not under any warranty and will be costly to fix.

- Highland, IL, USA

problem #34

Oct 282008


  • 95,000 miles
I bought this car a little over 1 month ago on Sept 18, 2008 and 1 week after buying it, I started experiencing issues w/ it not wanting to shift out of park and shifting hard while driving, it was taken to a transmission shop and they rebuilt the transmission for me. I have had no further issues w/ the transmission since then, however today, I was driving home from work and when I was slowing down for a red light, it downshifted extremely hard and now is stuck in first gear.

- Denver, PA, USA

problem #33

Sep 292008


  • 89,000 miles
Premature automatic transmission failure on a 2002 VW Jetta tdi diesel. First time it failed and locked the front wheels on Jan 2003 at 15,500 miles. The VW dealer failed to diagnose or acknowledge a problem when the car was beginning to exhibit difficulty shifting into reverse - 30 days before the transmission locked up while I was passing another vehicle, resulting in a near miss head-on collision. Transmission replaced under warranty. On Sept 29, 2008, 89,400 miles, the transmission began exhibiting the same problems as previously described. A local transmission shop, duckett's automotive, reported that premature automatic transmission failure at 50,000 miles or less is common with tdi Jettas. They report that there is no service bulletin or after-market fix to what they describe as a defectively designed auto transmission. The specific site of failure are the bearings in the planetary gear. The result, $3200 repair and rebuild. Two transmissions in less than 100,000 miles, and the expectation of premature failure of this repair as well.

- Shelbyville, IL, USA

problem #32

Jul 282008


  • 57,000 miles
Our 2002 Jetta suddenly developed transmission problems even before completing 57,000 miles. The car jerks while changing gears during acceleration in the speed range of 15 30 miles. From the information found on the internet, and from opinions obtained informally from independent garages, we believe that the 2002 Jetta has a history of similar transmission problems in the 55K 65K mile range. The repair entails replacing the automatic transmission for a cost of around 6000 dollars. Though the car has not even run 57,000 miles, VW has refused to take responsibility of fixing it for free because the 6-year warranty period has expired. VW refused to provide us with any information of the number of reports they had about this issue. VW offered us 1000 dollars toward the purchase of another VW vehicle but refused to pay us if we repaired our car for a lower price at an independent garage. We interpreted their offer as a marketing strategy to make us give them more business. The car problems have disrupted our lives because we did not anticipate having to invest more money after making a large investment of 25,000 dollars just a few years ago. 31 complaints have been already filed with the NHTSA on transmission issues for the 2002 Jetta, prior to this one. What will it take for the NHTSA to start an investigation into the problem" is there any way to make VW release data regarding customer complaints about the transmission, knowing that the repairs are so expensive" it is unfair that VW denies responsibility for what could be a known problem with their cars. We owned three other Japanese cars previously that were far cheaper than the Jetta, and gave us far superior service. Buying a Jetta was obviously a mistake.

- Silver Spring, MD, USA

problem #31

Jul 142008


  • 56,325 miles
I own a 2002 Volkswagen Jetta 1.8T at 56000 miles the transmission went out of it and at 56000 this shouldn't happen I have it at a transmission shop and they found metal shavings in the pan has their been a recall on this problem and if not can I get some assistance getting this problem fixed because at 56000 miles this should have never happened sense I've owned this car it has been nothing but trouble very unhappy with the way the Volkswagen dealer byers in columbus Ohio and the Volkswagen of amercia is handling this problem the code we get is PO730 I would truly appreciate some help with getting this fixed thank you tom.

- Newark, OH, USA

problem #30

Oct 092007

Jetta 6-cyl

  • 68,000 miles
2002 VW Jetta VR6 2.8 ever since we purchased the car in Sept. 07 we have a recurring problem with the car completely dying in intersection or idling with A/C on or just when running. When this occurs the dash resets and car shuts off and locks up. You have to turn to car off and put in park to restart. Very dangerous for my children and I to travel anywhere when I drive a hour to work each day. I also know a previous owner of the same year car the had the same exact problems and had to sell because after thousands of $ it was never able to be repaired. Also the car feels like to transmission is going out. This car was promised to be safe dependable and had been nothing but problems. We luckily have not had a accident yet but several very close calls. The VW deal cant seem to find the problem they insist they don't know what is causing it. They replace things and nothing works. Incident still occurring.

- Bedford, KY, USA

problem #29

Apr 152008


  • 35,899 miles
2002 Jetta VR6. Transmission control module (tcm) became faulty after mil light turned on for a emission related issue covered by a recall. Technicians failed to identify the faulty tcm after four trip to the shop. Last trip I showed them a tsb related to the tcm and now they agree that the modual is faulty. Worst part is it destroyed the transmission. The car has been hard to control in stop and go traffic as shifting is not smooth between 2nd and 3rd gears. Car has initial no acceleration/power followed by fast jerking shift into the 3rd gear with high acceleration. Car maybe out of warranty but identifying this issue is not easy for the automotive technicians and this part when it fails leave the car in a state that is hard to control or manage. Dealer only offered to credit this last diagnostic fee towards the $4700 repair which now include not just the tmc module but also the whole transmission. This is after having spent close to $1,000 trying to identify and fix this issue. Not sure if it was related to the mil light issue covered by the recall but since then the tmc had not worked correctly.

- Saratoga, CA, USA

problem #28

Apr 142008


  • 72,501 miles
I purchased the 2002 Volkswagen Jetta in August of 2006. The first set of repairs was on 3/2007 at 64,332 mi check engine light mulitple misfires: P0300, P0301, P0302, P0303, P0304 replaced ignition coils cost: $200.11 second repair took place in April of 2007 took car in for recall - replacement of brake light switch check engline light was back on - replaced temp. Sensor cost: $199.33 car was jerking into gear, downshifting hard and sluggish. Brought car into dealserhsip in April 2008 worn strut brushings needs rear pads needs rotors check engline light on again needs new coils again spark plugs temp sensor again new T-stat fans not working hoses under intake broken needs new transmission diagnosis cost: $149.21 estimated cost of repair: $6,500.

- Fairfield, CT, USA

problem #27

Mar 252008

Jetta 6-cyl

  • 35,000 miles
Related to htsa 10024548. 2002 Jetta stalls and has transmission issues between 2nd and 3rd gears which makes controlling the car difficult when trying to accelerate from a stopped position. Took this issue to dealer but they recommended other service which is not needed. The sudden loss of power and then the fast gear shift from 2nd to 3rd can be a real issue in stop and go traffic as it is hard to control the car. Lucky no accidents but a few close calls including merging into highway traffic. Have to use very low speeds to avoid this hard shifting issue.

- Saratoga, CA, USA

problem #26

Jan 102008

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,214 miles
Automatic transmission failure. Reported 15 faults on computer which went on detected two months prior. No warning signal came on to notify driver of engine problem.

- Flemington, NJ, USA

problem #25

Sep 202007

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles
I have a 2002 VW Jetta gl 2.0. it only has 83,000 miles on it and the transmission is acting up on it already. When I took it to the dealership the only suggestion they could give me is to replace the transmission($3K - $6K) I have read that there have been multiple problems with the 2002 model years pertaining to the transmission. Mine won't shift from park into reverse, I have to go from park to drive, let it shift, then from drive to reverse, and that sometimes takes three or four tries. While driving if I am at a stop light, when I begin to accelerate, there is a pause between when I press the accelerator and the giant lunge forward the car makes as it shifts into gear. It also shifts very hard between all gears while driving.

- Lake Orion, MI, USA

problem #24

Sep 142007

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,137 miles
I purchased my daughter a brand new 2002 VW Jetta, and most recently she has had some major problems with her vehicle. This was her1st vehicle and I taught her the importance of regular maint of her vehicle. But as I stated above it appears that her efforts have been for not. In the past 3 months the vehicle has been taken to the VW dealership 3 xs, and it is currently at the dealer, all for the same problem, the vehcile hard jerking when attempting to accelerate, the vehcile turning off at a stop sign or light and when she is topped in a turning lane - which is of course the most dangerous concern of mine especially if it dies out with oncoming traffic. The 1st two visits the dealer stated they found no problem. This visit (the 3rd) to dealer my daughter drove the service mgr in the vehicle & he witnessed the problem. We recieved a call saying they needed to look at a diagnostic of the transmission which of course would be at a cost of $330 regardless of what was found! ( a VW rip off ) & as I suspected the diagonistic came back requiring the replacement of the transmission at a cost of $3800 (warranty exp Oct 06), she has 60K+ miles. I am in shock I have owned over10 brand new autos in my lifetime, & have never had a transmission replaced all exceeding 85K miles. I began educating myself which led me to your web site to review either recalls or other compaints & to my surprise I found a large number of the same complaint. But it appears that if there has been no injuries yet or deaths the number does not make a diff. I am registering this complaint because my next action will be to an attorney, the idea that I would have to wait until my child is injured or possibly killed before the NHTSA will consider this as a problem is amazing to me.

- Sylmar, CA, USA

problem #23

Jul 162007

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 56,000 miles
I purchased a 2002 Volkswagen Jetta for my daughter. In August of 2006 the car was taken to a VW dealership for transmission service. In may of 2007 the transmission light came on and the car kept losing power when driving. When put in gear the car would shake and shut down. I had it towed to the VW dealership for repair. They replaced a seal, temp sender and sender for a total of $427.62. My daughter picked up the car and when driving home from the dealership after they repaired it the car shuttered, then slammed down into a lower gear almost causing her to lose control of the vehicle. I called the dealer and they approved having it towed back to their facility for repair. They then checked the car again and stated that the transmission failed and needed to be replaced for a cost of $3800. This car has 57,000 miles on it and when originally taken to the dealership for this issue it was 4 days out of warranty. Note: When the car initially broke down it was still in warranty but I was out of town for work and could not set up having it towed in until I returned home. The dealership was called regarding this issue prior to the warranty expiration. I called the dealership and VW corporate headquarters. They stated there was nothing they could do to assist in this repair. The VW dealership stated that they did not see a problem with the transmission when they first completed repairs but she did not even get 10 miles from the dealership before the car slammed down into a low gear.

- Gloversville, NY, USA

problem #22

Jul 172007


  • miles
I own a 2002 1.8T automatic Jetta with 75000 miles. Yesterday I was told it needed a new transmission. I use this car for basic transportation, and have maintained regular upkeep. I am appalled that I have to spend $5,000 to fix a faulty transmission. I have been doing research and it seems that a lot of Jettas have this problem, especially the turbos. How can Volkswagen get away with this? I would like to start a class action suit. Something needs to be done to correct this matter!.

- Catonsville, MD, USA

problem #21

Jul 172007

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,000 miles
I own a 2002 Jetta 1.8T and started having some intermittent problems with shifting from park into reverse or 1st and 2nd gears, pausing or jerking into gear. The problem started a couple months ago when the car had about 52,000 miles on it and was out of warranty by about 5 months. The problem became increasingly frequent and I took it to the dealer yesterday and was told that I need a whole new transmission. They said the transmission fluid bunt and ha debris in it". I have always done the scheduled maintenance on the vehicle, at the dealership, no less, and have never abused the transmission in any way. The car only has 54,000 miles on it! the service representative at the dealership called Volkswagen and stated he really went to bat for me, and that volkswsgen has agreed to cover 65% of the repair, which in the range of $5,000+. so I will still be paying at least $1750 to replace a fairly young transmission. I feel VW must know there is a defect in the transmission to even offer to pay for part of the repair, and judging by the other complaints this is a serious problem. I have been reading other complaints and it seemed that the transmission was painted with a metallic paint that disintegrated with high heat/temperatures and that it broke down, flakes off and damaged the transmission. This has to be a manufacturer's defect.

- Columbus, OH, USA

problem #20

Jul 022007


  • miles
Transmission problems. Car sputters and jumps. Dealer first worked on the gear shift. Then they replaced spark plugs and the battery to try to fix the problem. Recently said there was a leak and replaced the crankcase vent pipes. Still have the same problem.

- Frisco, TX, USA

problem #19

Feb 062007

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,250 miles
I own a 2002 Volkswagen Jetta 1.8T, since I bought the vehicle 2 years ago I used to get a minimal knock in the transmission from 2nd to 3rd gear, I asked the dealer to check it out and try to find out if this was normal. After the 1st year I noticed the knock a little harder but paid no mind to it because dealer said it was normal and VW said it was normal, until the day I brought it back to the VW dealership and told them about the problem I was having, moments later instead of just checking the transmission to its fullest they replaced a recalled brake switch and said that this was causing the knock in the transmission with a bill of almost 2,000 dollars I figured finally I get my transmission to work better because I was getting sick and tired of getting whiplashed by the knock that's how bad it is till this day. In approximate two days I get the same knock in the transmission and im like oh man I thought they fixed this problem, I spoke with a service manager who said "well bring it in again and if we missed anything we will take care of it at no extra charge". I said "ok" well a few hours passed and the dealer calls me up and tells me well we found your problem but it is a hefty price on fixing it!, I am thinking prob 1,000 bucks more! wrong!, he tells me my transmission is no good we need to replace it with a rebuilt which will cost around $3,800 dollars I'm like jesus christ! if they would've stopped up-selling me bs fixes in my car I would've had the money to fix it! but since this day I haven't got any resolution for my car im stuck with it until the transmission blows on it! please follow link to read other peoples issues that are similar to mine at www.lemonlawclaims.com/Volkswagen%20 touareg 20% transmission 20% problems.htm (that's the same problem im having with my car why isn't VW doing any recalls on this"??") counting due to owning what I believe to be a lemon!, VW needs to recall faulty transmissions.

- Allentown, PA, USA

problem #18

Aug 172006

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 97,347 miles
: the contact stated while shifting gears, the shifter became stuck in park. The dealer replaced the lock shift twice in the last two years and the problem reoccurred.

- Severn, MD, USA

problem #17

Jan 092006

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,500 miles
The transmission broke on my 2002 Jetta tdi (automatic) while I was driving home from the U.S. marine corps base, barstow, California. It only has 66,500 miles on it. I believe the desert VW dealership is responsible because they did not check the transmission thoroughly as I requested two months ago. VW America is not helping me at all with my request to have this reviewed by them. The dealers tell me to call VW America and VW America tells me to call the dealers.

- Fort Irwin, CA, USA

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