Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.

8.5

pretty bad
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 4
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
3,667 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

1998 Volkswagen Beetle engine problems

engine problem

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1998 Volkswagen Beetle Owner Comments

problem #15

Aug 082005

Beetle 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 55,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I have invested in a 1998 Volkswagen Beetle I only drove it 3 times it when down on me 6 miles from my house the guy that's working on said my headon motor was crack, then I had ele, problems everyday I call it is something else I pay down to ezway auto $5,000 then I pay $383 a month I have only had this car for 2 weeks. I ask for my money back they said no.what such I do I am disable on a limit income.

- Troutman, NC, USA

problem #14

Sep 132002

Beetle 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Vehicle caught on fire, possible engine failure, while driving the vehicles brake system failed and the driver had to use the emergency brake to stop vehicle. The head light malfunctioned and the vehicles is flling apart after one month of ownership. The dealer refused to fix it.

- Camden, NJ, USA

problem #13

Aug 142002

(reported on)

Beetle

  • miles
Consumer stated prior to trading in the 1998 Volkswagen Beetle, the vehicle would stall while decelerating and stopping at traffic lights and the dealer could not resolve the problem.

- Edison, NJ, USA

problem #12

Dec 201999

Beetle

  • Manual transmission
  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

While driving vehicle stalls out and engine completely shuts down, also engine check light illuminates.

- Cuyahoga Fall, OH, USA

problem #11

Jun 151999

Beetle

  • miles
This car drinks oil, the engine knocks, VW has done nothing to even aknowledge the problem. The window regulators are defective and one broke completely with the window falling out. The passenger side door can not be opend with a key and has been corode

- Smiths Falls Ontario, NY, USA

problem #10

Aug 051999

Beetle

  • miles
Bad wiring, alarm goes off in the middle og the night, rear hatch light comes on and off, wiring is bad in cold weather, front headlights keep burining out, excessive oil consumption, at about 2000 miles engine will be bone dry, excessive road nosie, radio no longer works, in general the car is in bad shape after two years of use and it seesm to be all factory related type of problems.

- Grand Haven, MI, USA

problem #9

Apr 102000

Beetle Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Ongoing problem with engine check light keep coming on. This has occurred on nine occasions, and vehicle stalled out while traveling at 40 mph or more on two occasions. Dealer unable to locate cause. Consumer states other beetle vehicles have been recalled, however she has not received any recall notification.

- Buffalo, NY, USA

problem #8

Mar 022001

Beetle

  • miles
Coolant loss on two occasions causing engine to blow, no warning until last minute, all fluids and maintenace done and under extended warranty, dealer refused to pay for new engine.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #7

Jul 012000

Beetle

  • miles
Multiple problems with car since purchase.

- East Greenwich, RI, USA

problem #6

Feb 032000

Beetle

  • miles
Possible engine failure and missing oil cap caused fire.

- The Woodla, TX, USA

problem #5

Feb 032000

Beetle

  • Manual transmission
  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Possible engine failure caused vehicle fire.

- The Woodlands, TX, USA

problem #4

Feb 022000

Beetle

  • miles
Check engine light came on due to evaporation system purge control valve failure.

- Manassas, VA, USA

problem #3

Aug 011998

Beetle

  • miles
Oil consumed at rate of 1qt/1500 miles. No leak or smoking exhaust. VW recommends oil change every 10,000 miles. Engine would have no oil by 6,000 miles. Could cause engine to seize and possible accident. Other new Beetle owners I know have told me they have the same problem with their gas 2.0L engine, 5spd new Beetle. This situation is very unsafe.

- Bluemont, VA, USA

problem #2

May 131999

Beetle

  • miles
Vehicle has high oil consumption, radio/cassette failure which resulted in fire, previous incident radiator failure, computer failure, defective control switches and defectice engine.

- Laurelton, NY, USA

problem #1

Apr 201999

(reported on)

Beetle

  • miles
Losing oil at rate of 1qt every 1,500 miles. VW ordered new engine for me. Service said nothing could be done about it, and it is normal. I don't think so. Owner's manual recommends oil changes at 10,000 mile intervals. The engine would be bone dry at 6,000 miles.

- Bluemont, VA, USA

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