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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
29,500 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.

2012 Volkswagen GTI brakes problems

brakes problem

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2012 Volkswagen GTI Owner Comments

problem #2

Jun 122016


  • 40,000 miles


While driving, I pressed the brakes one time and they worked, the next time they didn't. no slow degradation, they just went from working fine to not working at all. The vacuum booster failed catastrophically such that there was no assist and when more pressure was applied brake fluid squirted onto the engine resulting in basically no stopping of any kind. No warning light came on. When contacting VW about this, I was informed that the vehicle wasn't even equipped with a sensor capable of detecting that the brakes had completely failed. This despite the fact that their manual explicitly calls out the dangers of operating the vehicle without the vacuum booster. With something so important as the brakes, shouldn't there be at least a warning light? luckily this happened in my neighborhood at low speed, but that was just blind luck.

- Erie, CO, USA

problem #1

Aug 082012

GTI 4-cyl

  • 19,000 miles
Vehicle is a manual 6 speed. Two incidents - first, the car wouldn't engage into reverse from a stop until the vehicle ignition was turned off and on several times. Car operated normally for about 2 weeks. Second incident, car wouldn't engage into any gear while moving 10-15 mph uphill while in first gear. During loss of power train, the engine revved in the 4000-5000 RPM range, smoke was visibly coming out of the engine bay and there was complete loss of brakes, including the emergency brake. The vehicle started to roll backward downhill and was stopped by turning the vehicle into the sidewalk. Towed the vehicle to boardwalk VW in redwood city, ca and the service personnel and tow truck driver witnessed that the vehicle's reverse power train was not engaging properly. After 2 days of diagnostics, the technicians were not able to replicate the issue and concluded that the vehicle was operating within manufacturer specifications. No repair was formally performed.

- San Carlos, CA, USA

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