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really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
97,672 miles
Total Complaints:
4 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (2 reports)
  2. replace transmission (2 reports)
2003 Volkswagen Jetta transmission problems

transmission problem

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2003 Volkswagen Jetta Owner Comments

problem #4

Jan 252016

Jetta 4 Door 1.8L T

  • Automatic transmission
  • 155,000 miles


The transmission had been intermittent for some time. I tried to get it serviced at my usual place, but the mechanic informed me that it was a sealed transmission and his equipment could not handle it. I called Jiffy Lube, they declined the work. I called various tranny places and no one wanted to work on the car. I found a local shop that gave it a try. Once I got the car back, I started driving it home from work. I live about 40 miles away from my office. I remember getting on the freeway during rush hour. I had just called my wife to tell her how nice the car shifted between gears. The next second a couple of cars ran into each other in the next lane. I figured that it would be better to get out of the area so I gave the car some gas. Wouldn't you know it, the tranny gave out and I coasted to the shoulder. Oh my God, the repair shop had closed and I was stuck on the side of the road on one of the busiest freeways in Southern California. Well, fast forward and two weeks later and the car being serviced by the dealer we both gave up. New tires, a full tank of gas and it is going to the junk pile. Thanks a lot VW.....

- , Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #3

Sep 102010

Jetta GL

  • Automatic transmission
  • 107,690 miles

When the transmission problem first started I took the Jetta to a Volkswagen dealer in Macon, Georgia called Bulter and a worker there by the name LuLu M. checked the car out and said something was wrong with the transmission because the light was on. she didn't say exactly what was wrong she just said it needed a transmission. Who has $4-5 thousand dollars just hanging around, now the car won't even start. I called the Volkswagen Dealer that's in the manual NO HELP this car really does need a recall on the transmission. they are no good and it costs too much to have them replaced.

Somebody Help Me With This Problem

- , Milledgeville, GA, USA

problem #2

Nov 172009

Jetta Wolfsburg 1.8t

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles

The car would shift from 5 th. gear down to 1 st. gear without warning, almost had a major accident because of this. It was like slamming on the brake while going down the interstate.

The Volkswagen mechanic first thought that is was the Transmission Control Module, that was bad, and replaced it . It still did the same thing of shifting out of high gear to first gear without warning. He ran more tests and said that it was the Transmission that was bad. Cost to repair $ 3,350.00 ., not covered under warranty.... after having this problem with the car, I found out that other 2003 Volkswagen Jettas have had same problem. This is a serious defect in the Transmission of the 2003 model, and could , or will cause a serious accident involving this car.

- , Holland, MI, USA

problem #1

Sep 092009

Jetta GL 4c

  • Manual transmission
  • 50,000 miles

I lied about the date of my experience, I had a 1993 jetta in 1997 I replaced the transmission around 75,000 on the extended warranty. I took the car to Germany while I was in the military and drove that thing like I stole it on Das AutoBahn. computer shuts it down at 120 FYI. Came back from the land of the smurfs and at 98,984 miles had the transmission replaced again under the 100,000 mile warranty....I'm a lucky s.o.b I don't hold VW completely responsible. However there were other guys in my car club( yes i was an American in a German car club) in Germany having the same problems with their Vento's ( german equilvalent for Jetta) I bought an 08 jetta 2.0 turbo last night and love it....DRIVE THE CC IF YOU HAVE A CHANCE 300 HP.........WOW

- , Compton, CA, USA

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