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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
72,658 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.

2010 Volkswagen Passat engine problems

engine problem

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2010 Volkswagen Passat Owner Comments

problem #10

Jul 092016


  • 45 miles


While driving home (approx 50 mile trip) I heard a loud screeching noise from the engine area. I was traveling on a highway at about 60mpg. I pulled over, turned off the car and saw smoke and smelled burning from under the hood. I opened the hood and smoke billowed out of the back of the engine bay. I looked under the car to see if it was leaking anything and found a large amount of what seemed to be oil dripping from the car. I then noticed a trail of oil from before I stopped the car. I left the car in place for a tow to not damage the vehicle anymore than it already was. It was towed to the VW dealership in town where they diagnosed the problem is that the PCV valve stopped working correctly, which caused the rear main seal to fail and become completely destroyed. They said that the entire engine needs to be taken out to replace the seal and is going to cost $1700. Vehicle did not have any indication of problems before the screeching noise and did not have any check engine light come on during the problem. Vehicle has just over 100,000 miles and VW of America denied to help out in anyway when contacting customer service. Another incident with exact same issue was found when I looked at open claims on NHTSA and many other claims are easily found with a simple google search. I have had all maintenance performed on time and at VW dealerships and was never advised to get the PCV replaced as normal maintenance.

- Mankato, MN, USA

problem #9

Aug 202015


  • 178,000 miles
PCV valve went out; and in turn, the rear main seal ruptured a major oil leak between engine and transmission. Dealership concluded the PCV position crank valve cause back pressure into the crank resulting in damaging the rear main seal. VW has issued an extended warranty on PCV on certain models causing this issue, but the tsi 2009 and up have not been included in this recall. This issue could result in a catastrophic engine failure due to all oil leaking out of car while on road. This occurs when pressure builds up to PCV fails when car is being operated.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #8

Oct 132015


  • 59,000 miles
Engine misfires at 59K miles due to excessive carbon build up. The car has always been on the premium name brand gasoline, and serviced according to schedule.

- Sunnyvale, CA, USA

problem #7

Apr 092015

Passat 4-cyl

  • 74,762 miles


Ignition coil going bad. Dealer told me VW was on its 4th revision of these.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #6

Apr 032015

Passat 4-cyl

  • 52,870 miles
While driving my 2010 VW passet with 52870 miles on it at about 35 mph, it started misfiring, smoking (white smoke) and it stalled. I had enough momentum to coast to the side of the road, luckily avoiding an accident. It would't start so I called my ins. Co.'s emergency tow service and had it towed to the VW dealership.this was Friday evening. I was without my car until Wednesday afternoon. On Saturday I searched technical bulletins, articles and VW forums to find out what had happened. Apparently my car's 2.0T engine has a propensity to consume oil and to have a lot of carbon buildup which causes failure of the coil packs, fuel injectors and spark plugs which result in the vehicle suddenly faltering and stalling out. On Tuesday I was told by a VW technician that my fuel injector had failed. That evening I was told a second fuel injector failed. Wednesday I was told the car was ready to be picked up. The technician told me that VW was aware of a problem (I'm not quite sure how he worded it - but he mentioned carbon buildup as the cause) and the fuel injectors were under an extended warranty so no charge for the injectors but I would be charged $465 in related costs plus I would need another oil change in 500 miles to flush the engine (another $80). I asked about the likelihood of the other two injectors failing and perhaps causing me to crash my car. He said that if I had more carbon buildu, it could happen again. My car recently had its 50K maintance. If VW was aware of the carbon buildup dangers, they should have done a carbon clean-out at that time or at least offered/advised me to have it done. It only costs $169.79 and I would have had a safer vehicle. I thought I had reliable transportation. I was not aware of the carbon danger but VW was and they should tell owners about the VW 2.0T engine's potential problem before someone is killed!

- Chattanooga, TN, USA

problem #5

Mar 172015


  • 88,898 miles
While traveling downhill, the engine increased to 400 rpms while traveling at 15-25 mph. I then returned home. The engine light never came on; however, the D (drive) light began flashing, and I realized that the car was in limp mode. It was towed to the dealer, which had serviced the car every 10,000 miles, (and had actually replaced the turbo recirculation valve at 39,637 miles as a result of my concern that there was a burning smell while driving). Roseville Volkswagen diagnosed the current problem as being the multi-clutch assembly, as well as a faulty intake manifold. The intake manifold is covered by a voluntary extended warranty; however, the multi-clutch assembly is not covered in 2010 sedans. It appears that Volkswagen did extend the warranty on 2007-2009 models for the multi-clutch assembly; and it appears from several threads (,,, that the multi-clutch assembly continues to be a problem in 2010 models. Volkswagen of America is taking no responsibility to extend my warranty, which expired at 85,000 miles. I am concerned because the check engine light never appeared, and this could have happened while driving on a freeway, instead of on a street near home. Additionally, this problem may have begun approximately 20,000+ miles ago, as I again smelled a burning smell at that time, and was told by the dealer to ignore it, as it was probably a plastic bag that was burning on the engine. However, the smell lasted for several months, and I now realize from reading the threads that this was probably the beginning of the problem with the multi-clutch assembly.

- Rancho Murieta, CA, USA

problem #4

Jan 172015


  • 70,000 miles


For the third time, an ignition coil failed. This time, I pulled onto a two lane highway from a side street and began to accelerate when the vehicle lost power and began to shake uncontrollably.

- Monterey, CA, USA

problem #3

Sep 192014

Passat 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
I have a 2010 Volkswagen Passat with almost 70,000 miles. I purchased the brand new car in August 2010. In September 2014 and November 2014 (thanksgiving day), an ignition coil failed while I was driving. In September, I was pulling out of a parking lot onto a business road when the ignition coil failed. In November, I was on the on-ramp for the interstate when the ignition coil failed. This was especially scary as the ramp was uphill and the car barely had enough power to make it up the ramp. Both times, the car began to shake, and seemed to lose power as it was unable to go into third gear, and had trouble making it up the smallest hill. The second time an ignition coil failed, the car also had a lot of smoke coming out the tailpipe. Both times I had to drive home and then to the dealership at 25 miles an hour in a shaky vehicle in order to have the ignition coil replaced.

- Monterey, CA, USA

problem #2

Oct 012012


  • 68,000 miles
Car's transmission disengaged while wife was driving it. Car has dsg transmission that is same as the recall transmission from 2009 and 2010. Since then car's transmission has disengaged and then reengaged after restarting it a total of approximately 10 times some at low speeds and some at hi. Car always had lurch when driving. A google search shows over 6000 complaints at least regarding 2010 dsg transmission for VW Passat.

- Rockwall, TX, USA

problem #1

Aug 012012


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Volkswagen Passat cc. The contact stated that while driving approximately 20 mph, the vehicle began to jerk violently and the engine stalled without any warning. Upon restarting, the vehicle resumed normally. The failure recurred continuously. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer who was unable to diagnose the problem. The manufacturer was not notified of the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 70,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- West Covina, CA, USA

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