really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
69,084 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 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2005 Volkswagen Beetle Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #32

Jun 022010


  • 80,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Volkswagen Beetle. When the brakes were applied and the vehicle came to a complete stop the vehicle violently lunged forward. Upon accelerating the vehicle began to hesitate when changing gears. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer to be examined for the cause of failure. The vehicle was not repaired and the failure continued to occur intermittently. The frequency of the failures had increased over time. The failure and current mileages were 80,000.

- Smyrna, TN, USA

problem #31

Jun 012010


  • 72,000 miles
The transmission continuously slips between 2nd & 3rd gear when downshifting or upshifting. Often it will not shift at all. There is severe lurching occasionally when moving or coming to a stop. I have gotten a transmission flush which within days the problem continued. The power windows continuously do not fully raise- requiring you to manually raise them. I have had this problem fixed twice and both times after being fixed the problem occurred again within a couple of months.

- Burnsville, MN, USA

problem #30

Mar 272010


  • 34,000 miles
After 15 or so minutes the transmission starts to miss first & second gear shifting erratically if you are making a left turn, it is quite dangerous because the transmission will not engage for a few seconds this can cause a fatal accident, it is extremely dangerous. I have read other complaints & other VW 2005 super Beetles have this problem. Thanks.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #29

Jul 202010

Beetle 4-cyl

  • 102,000 miles


I have a 2005 VW Beetle, I just made my last payment on it. It has 102,000 miles on it. The transmission is slipping. The window regulator has messed up. I have replaced the headlights twice. Had to replace the radio in it. Replaced the tail lights numerous times. The transmission is the thing I am mostly concerned about. There are lots of complaints of other buyers dissatisfied with their 2005 Beetle. These cars are very expensive to buy. It is not right to buy anything for this kind of money and be faced with all these expensive problems. When the car changes gears it snatches your neck. Your help would be greatly appreciated.

- Lumberton, NC, USA

problem #28

Jun 212010


  • 78,900 miles
I have less than 80,000 miles on my 2005 VW convertible Beetle and was told I need a new transmission costing $6000. When researching, I found that this model is riddled with transmission issues.

- Auburn, IN, USA

problem #27

Apr 172010


  • 97,700 miles
2005 VW Beetle, began slipping out of gear and the final straw was in fast moving traffic and it slipped out completely, was nearly killed! found out the transmission was shot at 97,700 and apparently this happens quite a bit with these vehicles, to replace is $7,500. Thousands of complaints online, ntsb won't say if or what they are doing about it.

- Vacaville, CA, USA

problem #26

May 252010

Beetle 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,000 miles


I own a 2005 VW convertible Beetle automatic, which I bought new in August of 2005. It only has 64,000 miles on it. I have been having issues with the car lurching forward or shifting very roughly between first, second, and third gears on upshift and downshift. It is extremely scary and gets progressively worse the warmer the car gets. I've almost been in accidents several times because of the lurching, and I've almost been rear-ended on the freeway because of gear slipping. I've spoken to my transmission mechanic, and he stated that they've seen these same issues in many other VW's. I've also searched online, and seen 100's of complaints about this same issue. I contacted my VW dealer, who stated that this is not a common problem. After doing a little bit of internet research, I can't believe that that's true. I'm having to replace my transmission to the tune of several thousand dollars, and the car is not even 5 years old. I feel unsafe and nervous driving the car as do many, many others and I feel there should be a recall.

- Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #25

Jul 152009


  • 65,000 miles
2005 new Beetle, 79,000 miles needs a brand new transmission. The car shifts hard from gear to gear, down shifts hard, accelerates on it's own, shifts into next gear and just revs up instead of shifting. This is now occurring every time the car is driven. The cost to replace the transmission is $3,00 or more.

- Ormond Beach, FL, USA

problem #24

Apr 292010


  • 97,700 miles
I have a 2005 VW Beetle purchased new, I was driving and noticed jerking between 1st & 2nd then it started stalling going into 4th gear and a few days ago it slipped out of 6th gear in the caldecot tunnel, nearly got rear ended! took it to a tranny guy and he checked it out. Come to find out the VW tech he contacted told him that they go out at 100,000 (currently at 97,700) and it can take up to $7,500 to replace and it can't be fixed. VW tech said they did this to get you to buy a new car.

- Vacaville, CA, USA

problem #23

Apr 232010


  • 56,000 miles
I purchased a 2005 VW new Beetle convertible in 10/2009 as a way to "save money" and traded in my SUV. It had 48000 miles and now has 56000. In the last couple of months, the transmission started to slip between 2nd and 3rd. I took it in to a local transmission shop to have my trans fluid changed, thinking that might solve the problem. Found out that the transmission was completely ruined and needed to be rebuilt, which cost $4600+ dollars. My husband started looking online and there are pages and pages of testimonials regarding the same issue. When I talked to the VW customer care dept, they didn't know of any problems or complaints and because I didn't go to a dealership for my repairs, or purchase their extended warranty, I am out of luck. I'm afraid it will happen again. At least I went to an independent transmission shop, because looking at all the complaints from people that had their transmissions replaced at the VW dealer, lots of them are needing them replaced again. This seems like it should be a recall issue. Although I didn't have an accident, I am thankful that my transmission didn't go out or act up when I was on the freeway or somewhere that could have caused an accident. Please make VW be responsible for this, come to find out, common defect. The problems started probably in 1/2010 and just had the trans rebuilt 4/2010.

- Snohomish, WA, USA

problem #22

Apr 092010


  • 39,861 miles


1. car is 5 years old / 40K miles and the transmission was failing - having trouble shifting from first to second gear. Read online that other VW had same issue - clearly manufacturing failure. 2. transmission failure 3. valve body replaced.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #21

Mar 302010


  • 45,000 miles
My 2005 VW bug turbo jerks so violently between 2nd and 3rd gears that I've nearly hit a handful of cars when I'm trying to move slowly ahead in heavy traffic. I bought the car new, have serviced it faithfully, it is a 6 speed automatic and it only just turned 50K miles. About a year ago when I first noticed it shifting roughly between 2nd and 3rd gear (both upshifting and down shifting) I mentioned it to my VW service center and they said "that's what all bugs do, " and brushed me off. I'm writing you now because the jerking has become so violent it feels like I'm being rear ended each time it moves from 2nd to 3rd gear. Thank you.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #20

Mar 012010


  • 57,000 miles
2005 VW new Beetle auto 6 speed 57,000 miles. Hard downshifting. This problem is ongoing.

- Toluca Lake, CA, USA

problem #19

Mar 102010


  • 80,000 miles
I bought a 2005 VW new Beetle convertible in 2005 with the optional 6 speed automatic transmission. The car now has approx 80000 milles on the odometer and the transmission jerks and slips in all gears. The tachmometer winds 3000 rpms above what the engine should running at any particular speed when this occurs. During these circumstances in traffic I press the accelerator pedal and the car will not respond which places me at risk of a collision.

- Pleasanton, CA, USA

problem #18

Sep 192009


  • miles
Transmission slipping in a 2005 Volkswagen Beetle with 71,000 miles, I have been told by several repair shops that the manufacturer knows there is a problem with them but will not do anything about it. Driver's side rear window regulator became defective at 59,000 miles and when I contacted the manufacturer was told in order for them to assist with problem it must be diagnosed by a dealer. Drove 60 miles and was charged $100 to diagnose the problem (which I already knew what the problem was) and then was told that because of the mileage they could not help me. Manufacturer knew the mileage prior to requesting me to take to dealer. Cost of replacing a window regulator $600, there is a kit that can be installed, but of course that information is not given to the customer.

- Claxton, GA, USA

problem #17

Aug 012009


  • 56,500 miles
Issue has not yet caused an accident but will. Volkswagen Beetle, 2005 model with fewer than $57,00 miles. Transmission failing causing hard shifting and slipping gears resulting in car lurching and pausing unexpectedly. From my investigation this is a very common problem with the new Beetle, one that VW will not admit nor correct. I have been researching this issue for some time finding that there is no question as to whether a new Beetle owner will have transmission problems rather when the problem will begin. While I have not been able to determine how many if any accidents have been caused by this issue I do know there is a great concern amongst these vehicle owners that accidents will occur. VW should be forced to recall all vehicles that use these 6 speed automatic transmissions and correct this problem.

- Rincon, GA, USA

problem #16

Jan 052010

Beetle 4-cyl

  • 62,000 miles
Owner of a 05 Beetle. Transmission issues started at 60,000 miles. Put in a lot of money on repairs without replacing the transmission to be told afterwards the trans had to be replaced. Looked online and a lot of 05' Beetles are experiencing the same effects as early as 30,000 miles!! the car is fine for the first 15 mins than it jerks violently into 3 & 4th gear. The jerking gets so bad it feels as if I had been rear ended. I get panic attacks especially at stale green lights or intersections in general. I never received a recall ever on my car and noticed online a recall on the airbags went into affect on Apr 08 which my air bag has been out. I have paid $15,000 and still have $14,500 to pay off in the next 3 years with a payment of $400 a month!!! I can not afford to buy a new trans for my car. All these 05 Beetles are defective and very dangerous to drive due to their trans failing and very low mileage. I have always kept up with oil changes, trans flushes, new filters you name it. I can not believe that the "car of my dreams" gives me anxiety attacks just to drive it. Driving is one of my many modes of Transport everyday! please help VW owners with 05' Beetles get our cars fixed, I am paying a lot of money for a car that I am terrified to drive. Thank you for your time.

- Alsip, IL, USA

problem #15

Feb 242010


  • 55,403 miles
I am the original owner of a 2005 new Beetle conv. In 12/08 I took my vehicle in for 40K mile service at which time the transmission was checked for leaks and fluid level. In 2/10 my transmission had to be replaced because it was no good. My problems started about late November 2009 to December 2009. I started to have hesitation problems from take off and coming to a stop after about 15 minutes of driving. I first thought the problem was bad gasoline, however that was not the case. I would be going along just fine and then the transmission would jerk hard sometimes to change gears when coming to a stop. And would whine and hesitate and jerk to change gears when taking off. This problem got progressively worse and when I took my car in I was told @ 55,000 miles I would need a new transmission. So a new transmission was installed to the tune of $5,700. This is not was I bargained for.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #14

Feb 182010


  • 55,000 miles
2005 VW Beetle convertible - slips in and out of gear. I have been on the highway when it did this and it almost caused an accident with the vehicles in font of me and behind me. Luckily I was able to swerve into the right lane to avoid an accident for now. Reading other forums about VW, it is obvious that this is a huge issue that VW is having with a lot of their vehicles. Your job is to do something about it, so please do your job and keep our highways safe.

- Kansas City, MO, USA

problem #13

Feb 122010


  • 62,000 miles
The car has 62,000 miles on it and has been just drove around town and is now having transmission issues it has problems going from 1st to 2nd and when I slow down it down shifts so hard it felt like I was being hit from behind!!! I was so startled when it happened I had chest pains!!! its looking like these transmissions are defective because there are alot of people having the same problem!!!!!

- Bessemercity, NC, USA

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