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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
61,643 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.

2006 Volkswagen Passat steering problems

steering problem

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2006 Volkswagen Passat Owner Comments (Page 5 of 6)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #23

Jun 252009


  • 90,000 miles


Car would not start when key was inserted. Problem was very intermittent at first and then became more and more common. Then sometimes the car would start but stop immediately. Dealers at first told me that they had never heard of this but now state that the car requires a new steering column.

- Toronto, 00, USA

problem #22

Jun 222009


  • 105,460 miles
Having issues with steering column lock, car never starts, takes multiple tries to get it to start. Saving money to pay for $1500 repair. While driving to work on Monday June 22 @ 72 mph, the vehicle turned off. This was extremely scary due to being on major highway at such a speed. I almost did not make it to the side of the road without being struck from behind. The vehicle took several attempts from there to start again.

- Canfield, OH, USA

problem #21

Apr 152009


  • 50,000 miles
Electronic steering column continues to produce warning lights after being sent in for service. Warning message that electronic steering lock is defective continues coming on. Error message causes the car to not start, sometimes taking 2-10 restarts to get the car running. Power assistance and electronic steering can fail (according to the owner's manual) if this problem is not fixed. Could cause personal injury to self and others or damage to the vehicle if this is not fixed. Have researched problem on the internet and found several other owners with the same problem. Dealerships seem to have difficulty diagnosing and repairs are very costly. Entire steering column must be replaced at a cost of $1,500-2,600. Seems to be a common problem for this year and make, and may cause significant damage if not fixed.

- Centennial, CO, USA

problem #20

May 202009


  • 42,000 miles


The car suddenly wouldn't start. There was no forewarning. "steering column lock defective" warning appeared on the in-dash console. The car wouldn't start. I removed the key and tried after a few minutes, and the car started okay. This happened a few times in the stretch of one week or so. I took the car to the dealer and they replaced the entire steering column.

- Salinas, CA, USA

problem #19

Jun 162009


  • 55,000 miles
Car will not start, dashboard warning "steering column lock failure" I have had this problem for quite some time and I think it's about time to do something about it as this appears to be a common problem with B6 Passat owners. The problem is most likely faulty contacts yet the whole steering column is replaced by Volkswagen and could cost up to $2000..

- Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #18

Jun 082009


  • 58,000 miles
I have a 2006 VW Passat, among many issues with this model and year, the most recent and my serious concern for safety is the ""steering column lock defective" the car sometimes will not start at all or will start and immediately die. I did some research online and was shocked by the number of VW customers that had the same issue and nothing has been done yet! the cost to fix this is in the upwards of $1500. One the car is only 3 years old and two there seems to be a pattern here that this is a VW defective issue! this is a safety concern, I am pregnant and can't even get home after driving to work or the store! I feel VW has an ethical responsibility to fix this recurring problem! I hope you can pursue this.

- Haddonfield, NJ, USA

problem #17

May 262009


  • 56,500 miles


When I attempt to start my car, it will initially turn over but will then shut down. The in dash computer states a steering wheel lock failure. The dealership informed me that the problem was with a module in the steering column and that the repair bill would be $2000. They also confirmed that another one of their customers had the same problem, except that the steering locked up on them while driving. The gentle I spoke with explained that the steering wheel locking up can also occur with mine. He then stated that VW America was going to pay for approximately $800 of the repair bill and I will have to cover the rest.

- Little Elm , TX, USA

problem #16

May 022009


  • 54,000 miles
I am the second owner of a 2006 VW Passat, who has had multiple issues with this vehicle. The latest being of most concern. When I attempt to start the car, it will either not turn over at all, or the engine turn over, then die. This happens nearly everytime I am in the car. My vehicle is 4,000 miles outside of the warranty, so neithervolkswagon, nor my local VW dealer will assist me with the cost (being an !@#$% amount of $1643 out of pocket), nor has a recall been issued. I have called and emailed numerous individuals at VW corporate level, with no results. In doing research, I have found many forums, with multiple posts of customers having this same issue with this car, specifically the 2006 model. I have also went through the better business bureau to attempt to get answers on why VW is not doing more for their customers with a part that is obviously defective. Below is the reply email I got from them, instructing me to contact your company. Thank you for your attention and time on this matter. Copy of email from BBB-- {I am in receipt of your email sent to the better business bureau, Inc. Upon review of your email, it doesn't appear as though you have filed a claim with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. I suggest you begin there. The Office Of Defects Investigation (ODI) is an office within the NHTSA. ODI conducts defect investigations and administers safety recalls to support the NHTSA's mission to improve safety on our nation's highways. NHTSA is authorized to order manufacturers to recall and repair vehicles or items of motor vehicle equipment when ODI investigations indicate that they contain serious safety defects in their design, construction, or performance. ODI also monitors the adequacy of manufacturers' recall campaigns. Before initiating an investigation, ODI carefully reviews the body of consumer complaints and other available data to determine whether a defect trend may exist.}.

- Lebanon Junction, KY, USA

problem #15

Feb 282008


  • 60,000 miles
Vehicle will not start 70% of the time. Vehicle stalls once started. Problem is getting worse. Quote was provided to repair, but parts are very expensive.

- Canfield, OH, USA

problem #14

May 112009

Passat 4-cyl

  • 63,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Volkswagen Passat. The contact stated that the steering column locks up on her vehicle and prevents it from being driven. She attempted to start the engine and an indicator illuminated, which stated that the steering column was locked. The vehicle was towed to the dealer and they stated that the steering column was defective and needed a module. The repair would cost $1,300. The failure mileage was 63,000. Updated 05/27/09 updated 06/08/09 updated 6/16/09 the left rear caliper needed to be replaced, the check engine light illuminated, the transmission was making a loud noise, the tire pressure light illuminated, the left turn signal did not work, the left wheel bearing needed to be replaced, the hood release lever inside the vehicle was inoperative. Updated 06/17/09.

- Fredericksburg, VA, USA

problem #13

May 182009


  • 69,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Volkswagen Passat. The contact attempted to start the ignition and the steering wheel began to lock up. There were two warning indicators illuminated on the instrument panel. The messages displayed were "embolizater activated move steering wheel" and "steering lock defective". in addition, the ignition key was stuck and failed to release. The failures occured without warning. The driver disconnected and reconnected the battery cable to start the vehicle. The vehicle stalled between six to ten times while in operation. The failure occurred intermittently. The vehicle was towed from her residence to an independent mechanic. The VIN was unknown. The failure and current mileages were 69,000.

- Cranston, RI, USA

problem #12

May 042009


  • 64,701 miles
2006 VW Passat 2.0T steering column problem indicated by warning message in dashboard. We've seen this message on and off over several days. According to service advisor at the VW dealer the steering column will lock. Therefore, it needs to be replaced. The estimate is $1,500 dlls. I did a web search to see if other owners have the same problem. I was amazed by the number of people complaining about this and so far there is no recall from VW for what is appears a design error.

- Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #11

Apr 172009


  • 30,000 miles
Car intermittently will not start for several minutes, and display reads "steering column lock defective". has happened dozens of times. Dealer denies anything wrong with car after inspection.

- Ossining, NY, USA

problem #10

Dec 262008


  • 60,000 miles
2006 VW Passat steering lock failure..will cost me 1500 to fix even though there are countless pages of people have the same problem with car. Volkswagen does not recognize it as big enough for a recall.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #9

Oct 232008


  • 61,000 miles
2006 VW Passat "steering wheel lock defective". car will not start consistency.

- Terre Haute, IN, USA

problem #8

Oct 012008


  • 50,000 miles
Gosh where do I start VW Passat 51000 miles alot of things went wrong.. car starter volks came out causing the starter to break my trunk doesn't close pops open in the middle of road/freeway causing me to loose thing from my trunk extremely dangerous in the freeway my steering wheel lock is defected does not lock I have called numerous of VW dealer ships and they want to charge me cause its warranty expired and for steering lock I went before warranty and they want to charge me 90 dollars I don't have that kind of money lying around I have car payment. Ins ect... im scared if something was to happened while me driving with my kids.

- Spring Valley, CA, USA

problem #7

Dec 142008


  • 51,000 miles
Back in the summer of 2008, I was having minimal issues with having the key stick into the ignition. I was able easily push the key in and take it back out without a problem. Around December 2008 I had a "steering column lock defective" appear on my dashboard and my car shut off. This continues to happen about once every 10 times I turn the car on. I took it to the Volkswagen dealership and it was stated that the electronic steering column needs to be replaced as well as the comfort system module. Total cost: $1,500.

- Apple Valley, MN, USA

problem #6

May 012008


  • 60,000 miles
2006 VW Passat with steering issue. Message in dash indicates "steering column lock defective." Local VW dealership says entire steering column needs to be replaced at my cost since car is out of warranty with 69,000 miles. Cost of repair is close to $2,000. The car has problems starting daily because of the issue. After searching various internet sites it looks like other 2006 Passat owners are having the same issue. I have contacted VW of America, trying to have them cover the cost of the repair. I was told by the dealership that this is an electrical issue/defect. It sounds like a common trend for the 2006 model and should possibly be a recall.

- Glen Burnie, MD, USA

problem #5

Dec 282008


  • 30,200 miles
I was driving my VW Passat 2006 2.0T today with my two children in the car. We stopped for a short break. When I restarted the car, I got the "steering column lock defective" message on the car computer. After I restarted the car a couple of times, the message was gone. When I checked the Passat owners forum, I realized this is a very common problem for this car. I decided to inform NHTSA about it. I will see the dealer tomorrow to rectify the problem.

- Edgewater, MD, USA

problem #4

Dec 012008


  • 42,000 miles
Steering column lock defective causing the car to shut off very often. VW dealer replacing the steering column and computer under warranty.

- Waukesha, WI, USA

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