hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
49,878 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.

2005 Volkswagen Beetle lights problems

lights problem

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2005 Volkswagen Beetle Owner Comments

problem #14

Jun 152015


  • miles


I took my 2005 convertible Beetle to the service provider because my R headlight was out. They refused to work on it because it was a fire hazard. All the wires to the headlight were exposed. The protective part over the wires were brittle and appeared to have just rotted off. Each wire will need to be repaired before any one will work on it due to the hazard. I looked at the left headlight and someone had repaired the wires already on that side. Lots of electrical tape and wire nuts. I still have no R headlight. The airbag light has been on as well since I purchased the vehicle used last year. I own another Beetle. It is a 2000 and the airbag light has been on for several years as well. I have read about wiring problems with the airbags and feel that it is also a safety issue I felt that needed to be reported. Please feel free to contact me for further details.

- Walnut Cove, NC, USA

problem #13

May 152013


  • 130,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Volkswagen Beetle. The contact stated that the passenger's side headlight failed to illuminate. The contact inspected the vehicle and noticed that the headlight wiring harness was faulty. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 130,000.

- Jesup, GA, USA

problem #12

Mar 182013

Beetle 4-cyl

  • 62,000 miles
I have replaced this same brake light over and over. I just read where this vehicle had a recall for a faulty brake light switch. I called VW of America and they said my vehicle had the switch replaced in 2007 since I bought the vehicle used, I did not know if it had the recall replacement. I asked VW of America since it seems to have the same problem, would they replace it and they denied my request. It seems to me that the brake light switch replacement does not last. I have less than 65K mile on the.

- Chino Hills , CA, USA

problem #11

Dec 082010


  • 40,000 miles


The light sockets on the car are loose and will allow the bulb to come loose and not make contact with the connector and the light has to be re-inserted, this constant removal and fixing of the lights has caused several of the components to break and now make it impossible to fix. The effected lights are: Tail lights, brake lights, turn signal lights, head light, reverse lights... mainly the rear lights, but the head lights are having the same issue.

- Oklahoma City, OK, USA

problem #10

Feb 022012


  • 56,243 miles
Rear quarter windows on new Beetle convertible (nbc): Failure to properly raise/lower, grinding noise from inside panel behind speakers, disassembly found broken cable retainer component, component made of cheap plastic, known problem among nbc owners, $600+ repair for each side, simple correction would be to make this component out of aircraft grade aluminum, both sides have failed on my daughter's car------------ lighting: Frequent replacement of headlight low beam bulbs (driver's and passenger's side), consistently failing, have replaced five bulbs in last 1.5 years, no fault codes thrown, mechanic hypothesized it may be due to a voltage surge, problem not associated with touching the bulb (causing them to fail due to oils on fingers) as I use nitrile gloves when handling and installing the bulbs.

- Boise, ID, USA

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problem #9

May 252011

Beetle 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
* hard gear shifting - led to a complete inability to shift or break - luckily I was able to "roll" off to the side of the road before being hit. Additionally I have experience the sudden lurching on about 5 occasions. * the car also loves to roll even on flat ground. Need to use the emergency brake always and leave in gear. Rolled on 2 different occasions - once with major damage. * repairing the driver side window for the second time in 1 year. It just gets stuck - I have read it is a regulator issue. The first time the window just would not go up all the way and shattered. This time it is stuck down. The first repair was $642! * front lights keep burning out and need to be replaced. I think it has been 5X now in 7 years.

- Hamden, CT, USA

problem #8

Apr 092011

Beetle 4-cyl

  • 20,601 miles


Plastic lens on headlight fell off the sealant was still attached but every time you park the lens would fall off went to auburn Volkswagen and they said couldn't replace sealant I had to buy a whole assembly which cost me $525.59 which there was a recall on the exterior lights which we did not received and I can't get ahold of sabersports who was the contact, in 2009 we purchase the car 2/16/09 and only have 20,626 miles on it, and I feel the light was one of the recalls and my other headlight looks like its starting with the same sealant problem. I feel I should get my money back and my lights reworked on the recall which the dealer didn't mention any thing about a recall, and we never got notice about recall.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #7

Jul 092010


  • 80,000 miles
2005 VW Beetle with transmission problems, wiring problems and lighting problems. Seems like this is in a lot of Beetles that are on the road. Transmission failed at 80,000 miles... this is an ongoing problem and the VW company seems not to care. Since car bought multiple problems, which VW has fixed most of them. The lighting harness melted together on the right and left front sides, this was concern of mine. Why"??", the transmission failed... without warning.. took it in for 80,000 mile service paid $600 and then transmission fails. I don't understand. But I feel like there needs to be a proper investigation into the ongoing problems..... my brakes have failed to work in reverse 3 times now and this is scary.... I finally get stopped and then have to pump brakes. Nothing wrong with them so far when taking into VW dealer.

- Goodwater, AL, USA

problem #6

Aug 032010


  • 62,000 miles
Plastic part in headlights (which bulb sits in) gets hot melts causing headlight to go out. Potential for fire.

- Gowen, MI, USA

problem #5

Apr 222010


  • 30,000 miles
My daughter drives a 2005 Volkswagen convertible. It has numerous safety issues: 1. the tail lights cease working although the bulbs are good. The bulb contacts are inadequate for both tail lights. This has occurred four times on her car in the past three years. 2. the convertible headliner pulls away from the rear window and droops in front of the rear window blocking the view in the rear view window. This has occurred 5 times in the past 4 years and she has stopped using the convertible top to prevent her from having a accident. 3. the power windows have failed while she was driving. The windows would not come up. This has happened three times in three years. These problems have been experienced by many VW owners (do a google search). They are all safety issues.

- Houma, LA, USA

problem #4

Feb 272010


  • 35,455 miles


New VW Beetle headlight and taillight failures. The headlights on my daughters 2005 Beetle fail but can be made to work again by hitting the headlight with the palm of your hand. Headlight/taillight failures are reported as a common problem with the new Beetle and verified by my VW dealer in metairie, la. Last night while my daughter was driving both headlights went out within a few minutes of each other. Today I removed the headlight assembly and inspected the connections and wiring. Both assemblies have heat and current related wiring failures. Where the wire is crimped to the bulb flag type connector the wire is discolored and is corroded. The insulation on the wire is also discolored and cracking from heat or overcurrent or both. This applies to the low beam connectors for both lights. The bulbs are the original phillips 55W which is spec for the low beam. Many owners think their bulbs have failed and this is not the case. There are many blogs regarding early bulb failure in the new Beetle as most owners simply are unable to remove the assembly as it requires mechanical skills and technical knowledge. I've also had similar problems regarding the tail light assemblies but I have not thoroughly inspected them as I did in this case. Again the VW dealer told me tail light failures are common and they don't know why VW has not issued a recall. This is definitely a safety problem and not an isolated incident.

- Houma, LA, USA

problem #3

Nov 252009


  • 62,000 miles
Headlights need to be replaced 3 times a year, can only be done at a dealer and are very expensive.

- Harbeson, DE, USA

problem #2

Oct 152008


  • 45,000 miles
I own a 2005 VW Beetle and have had the car since new. The headlights on the car are coming apart at the seams. VW says this is normal. I don't think it is normal at all. Seems like faulty parts to me. Headlights should not be coming apart at the seams.

- Byhalia, MS, USA

problem #1

Apr 152005


  • miles
Purchased 2005 VW Beetle with 7,300 miles assured full warranty....guaranteed paint on front bumper would be corrected...did it twice still peeling off....electric windows repaired twice....began making noises when weather was damp...took it to be checked out and was assured it would not always happen but normal...told them transmission seemed to be slipping....one headlight had a short, and then recall on brakelight...they did repair that...but informed me that was all they had time to do that do due to recall...gas cap cover was sticking as well...didn't fix it either....then my air bag light came on...took it in for recall on that...after it was supposedly fixed airbag light did not go off, insisted it had nothing to do with sensor that was recalled...noise in front end began and floorboard flooded during heavy rain....with no obvious entry point....did search for problems with VW Beetles and there are thousands having the very same problems I have been experiencing....now heat gauge light comes off and on, alarm randomly sounds.....but noise in front end concerns me greatly...would not even diagnose car without $98 bucks an hour labor charge to find problems.... this car only has 34,952 miles on it and it is falling apart...no way can all these problems be fixed and me make payments....but thousands are having these very same problems...why has our government not insisted on a recall.....

- Des Arc, AR, USA

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