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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
51,688 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 Jetta electrical problems

electrical problem

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2012 Volkswagen Jetta Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #62

Oct 282016


  • 90,000 miles


The contact owns a 2012 Volkswagen Jetta. When the horn was activated, it failed to operate without warning. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 90,000.

- Huntsville, AL, USA

problem #61

Oct 172016


  • 80,000 miles
On several occasions the key is stuck in the on position and I have difficulty turning off the engine. This obviously occurs when stationary since I am turning the vehicle off.

- West Bend, WI, USA

problem #60

Oct 142016


  • 51,000 miles
Purchased 2012 VW Jetta new at local VW dealership. Currently has approx 51,000 miles on it. At around 29,000 miles ignition switch would not shut off while I was shopping-took to dealershipi and was told it was fixed- had just stuck. Less than a month later same thing happened. Dealership had the car for weeks-(this time they did provide loaner car). Most recent- prior to ignition problem currently occurring I had to have wiper motor replaced at my cost $600 plus dollars. I sat in waiting area of dealership that clearly stated we provide loaner car or shuttle service at time of your appt. Neither available on that day. I addressed this issue with service manager who was off that day. Received apologetic E-mail. Have had to replace headlight bulb and needs replaced again. Could this be an electrical issue" is this car even safe to drive my grandchildren in" I am not feelin comfortable with it. Presently as I am writing this my car has been running for 18 hours. Ignition stuck Friday eve- service dept not open on sat. When I called Friday eve basically I was told "get it over here somehow and we will take a look". presently weighing my options-needless to say I am extremely disappointed with the purchase of my first new VW. Previously had owned two used VW golf. Note: First time I was fortunately close to VW garage which is a 40 minute drive from my house-fortunate again this time that it's sitting in my driveway running until I can figure out a plan. Loved my VW-past tense. After going online I see other people have had this very experience with ignition. Seems it is going to be expensive. Very disappointed! my dealership is VW clarksburg, wv. Former star motor-1-304-623-7827. Shane leblond - "service manager"

- Philippi, WV, USA

problem #59

Oct 122016


  • miles


Key binds in ignition when turning vehicle off. This had been an ongoing issue. Key needs to be jiggled to turn ignition switch back to get key out. At times it takes a few seconds to remove key, which is not good in case car needs to be turned off and exited quickly.

- San Leandro, CA, USA

problem #58

Nov 012015


  • 66,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Volkswagen Jetta. While driving 20 mph, the vehicle accelerated forward in a jerking motion without warning. The vehicle was taken to the dealer to be serviced per a recall related to the failure; however, the failure recurred. Also, a howling sound emitted from the engine and the oil and check engine warning indicators illuminated. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer, but the failure was not diagnosed. In addition, the contact stated that the headlights became inoperable intermittently without warning. The contact also mentioned that the front driver seat independently readjusted and the steering wheel shook violently when the vehicle was driven. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the purge valve and the steering rack failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure mileage was 66,000.

- Charleston, WV, USA

problem #57

Oct 062016


  • 93,000 miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine. The key will not go into the back (off) position, so the car remains running. This is apparently a known problem according to the dealership, so it should be a covered repair under a recall. This is not an inexpensive fix.

- Oregon, WI, USA

problem #56

Oct 012016


  • 35,552 miles


Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine.

- Fredericksburg, VA, USA

problem #55

Sep 232016


  • 45,000 miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine. Key will not turn off engine and key can not be removed. This occurs when the car is parked and I try to turn off the engine.

- Orange, CA, USA

problem #54

Aug 012016


  • miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine. (car in park, stationary.) must turn key back and forth several times to remove. Ongoing since early August.

- Sunderland, MD, USA

problem #53

Sep 162016


  • miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine.

- Stafford, TX, USA

problem #52

Aug 262016


  • 112,103 miles


Car wont start after you shut it off. Replaced the battery twice and the alternator three times in three days. No charge from the alternator to the battery. Had it tested the battery is good but still showing a bad alternator. Replaced all the fuses as well. Diagnostic is telling us nothing except the alternator isn't charging the battery. Car has been sitting for two weeks because I'm tired of paying people to look at the car and cant figure out whats wrong with it. I'm afraid to let my daughter drive it because she is pregnant and I don't want her stranded on the road or the car cut off on the highway and she get seriously hurt.

- North Augusta, SC, USA

problem #51

Nov 152015


  • miles
The horn has not been working since November 2015. There is a recall on the air bag in the horn.

- Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #50

Aug 252016


  • miles
Key got stuck in the ignition with motor running. Could not turn to "off" position. Although I could kill the motor by releasing the clutch (manual transmission), I still could not turn the key off and, therefore, would have to just let the battery die after many hours of sitting there with the key on. I could not leave the vehicle unattended as anyone could have gotten in, started it right up, and left with it. Did a google search and found that opinion placed the blame on a faulty ignition switch. Also discovered many others with this exact same problem who had to have their ignition switches replaced, so this is a known problem with Volkswagen.

- Burkburnett, TX, USA

problem #49

Jul 112016


  • 46,600 miles
Like the recall on 2011 Jetta horn the 2012 Jetta horn have the same issue. While driving through a parking lot was hit by a driver backing up and vould not warn the driver due to ahorn that does not work. Today I was almost sandwiched between a semi-truck and a car moving into my lane. Luckily for me and thekid the driver in the car got back in their own lane. It appears the trunk light does not work either. This is the second time the horn and trunk light stopped working, last time it fixed it's self this time it seems to need help to resolve the problem. Horn clicks no sound, no alarm warning sounds.

- Allen, TX, USA

problem #48

Aug 152016


  • 65,000 miles
Ignition key will not turn off after starting car. Have to jiggle and tap on key to eventually get key to turn to the off position. Once out of ten times the key may turn off normally. I have tried moving the steering wheel back and forth while turning key off. I've also tried moving the gear shifter to see if the lock is preventing the key from turning. Nothing really seems to work. Then for no reason at all I you will be able to turn it off. Seems like the tumblers get out of line or something. Car is parked on flat level driveway when this happens.

- Newport News, VA, USA

problem #47

Aug 142016


  • 54,000 miles
The ignition switch is becoming increasingly difficult to turn off and remove the key from. I've done my research and have found a community of other VW owners experiencing similar issues with the VW models (many Jettas like mine). The vehicle is safely parked, etc, and the key must be turned so hard that it feels like one could break/damage the key in the ignition switch before it releases.

- Sussex, WI, USA

problem #46

Aug 112016


  • 63,000 miles
Key stuck on the on position and not able to turn key, to turn car off.

- Fairfax, VA, USA

problem #45

Jul 262016


  • 73,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Volkswagen Jetta. When starting the vehicle, the epc warning light illuminated and the vehicle stalled when attempted to drive. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where the failure code was cleared for the ABS fuse. In addition, while driving 60 mph, the brake light failed. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the brake switch and brake booster failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 73,000.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #44

Apr 152016


  • 62,000 miles
Car's fuse # 6 keeps blowing which controls the back lights that turns on at night, when fuse blows lights on back go out and cars behind you can't see you and may cause a collision where serious injury and death may result. I think this an engineering flaw where they connected the back lights to other modules in the car, so the short remains and car is not safe to drive at night fuse keeps blowing every time you put a new one in VW is not willing to look at the problem and give me a solution, the short is not in any of the lights on the back of the car, or inside the car, VW is refusing to give me the schematic diagram for that circuit so we can trace the problem, they insist on taking it to the dealer where it is going to be a very expensive fix to track down the short where it is an engineering flaw. Also the air bags warning lights come on intermittently, and seat belts warning lights come on and start chiming while you have seat belts on and properly fastened, do not know if seat belt or airbags are defective which is very unsafe in my opinion, and VW refuses to look at my problem without a hefty dealer charge. Please help

- Jamestown, NC, USA

problem #43

Oct 102014


  • miles
Driver side bulb keeps burning out. Was replaced by dealer with oem parts, but it keeps burning out every month. The daylight running light on the driver side does not work. They keep replacing it and it keeps burning out. I see many other Jetta's like mine with the same problem on the road.

- Goshen, NY, USA

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