really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
70,948 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 Beetle drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2006 Volkswagen Beetle Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #25

Apr 152016


  • 98,000 miles


Transmission problems related to this model. Car hesitates when automatic transmission is shifting gears.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #24

Jul 012016

Beetle 5-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
A well documented transmission problem under 100,000 miles there was a lawsuit that I was unaware of my transmission is now having this issue.

- Bristol, RI, USA

problem #23

Dec 082015


  • 77,000 miles
06 dig tranny making noise, vibrating badly. Dealer says, 77000 miles transmission needs to be replaced. The 10 yr 10000 mile warranty is for 2007 and up vehicles. 2006 is not included. ( my TH400 tranny in my Buick has lasted 39 years......)

- Hartford, CT, USA

problem #22

Nov 102014


  • 78,000 miles


While driving the engine RPM's will go extremely high followed by a thump sound as if the car jumps back into gear. VW of America issued extended warranty which expired in February 2014. It was determined that a valve in the transmission is bad so an extension was issued on the warranty but owners were not told of this and had to have car problems since there was no other to take the car in for any repair of the transmission. A recall notice should have been issued since numerous owners have had this issue which is costing thousands per car to correct.

- San Bernardino, CA, USA

problem #21

Oct 152014


  • 140,000 miles
I am including my complaint after reading all the complaints from other people who have unfortunately bought this car. This car has been a money pit and one issue after another. They are not safe cars. We got a total clear inspection from the VW dealer ( of course) and then there was some sort of oil leak, which we spent 2K fixing, then the drivers side window just decided to stop working and the entire window had to be duct taped up in the dead of winter until we could order a replacement, then the controller need to be replaced ($500) then the car started lurching non stop and now we are told it needs a new transmission. Seriously" VW needs to address the transmission issues in this car and they need to be recalled. They are a safety issue. We bought the car for $5500 and have about another 4K into it. I would never recommend this car to anyone. Please do something and make VW take a closer look at the lemons they are selling people. I will now have to scrap this car, because it's not safe. Especially the transmission issue......how can it be ignored with so many people having the same exact issue with the transmission"

- Greenville, SC, USA

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problem #20

Dec 222014


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Volkswagen Beetle. While driving at approximately 30 mph, the vehicle's speed decreased and failed to accelerate over 4 mph. In addition, the transmission and the eps warning lights illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 80,000.

- Willmington, CA, USA

problem #19

Nov 282014


  • 106,589 miles


My daughter was driving her Beetle down a city street when it was stopped going like it was in neutral even though she was in drive. She coasted into a parking lot and turned off the car and waited. She then tried again and it was working. We took it to the dealer ship they said the transmission needs replaced it is testing with a transmission failure on 4th and 5th. It is drivable but we will not risk her life or take a chance that it will stop moving again while driving down the road. We bought this car used 5 months earlier the car fax said it was excellent and had all maintenance up to date.

- Arlington, TX, USA

problem #18

May 152014

Beetle 4-cyl Diesel

  • 138,000 miles
Severe burned diesel fumes infiltrating the cabin of the car while driving.

- Mexia , TX, USA

problem #17

Sep 142012


  • 99,000 miles
Bought the car brand new.it started first by going from park to drive or reverse it would rev high and lurch forward and I would have to keep a heavy foot on the brake until RPM came back down.on the interstate, repeatedly, the car would hesitate while foot was on gas. I figured out to take foot of gas pedal and reapply and it would fix the deceleration issue.next, my car would bang into 3rd gear so hard I thought I was rear ended.it would occur 15 minutes into driving it.got a letter, valve body recall, and I called VW, told me it was transmission and would cost 5600. I told them I researched these symptoms and clearly states valve body. 2 weeks of calling and waiting, dealership repaired valve body.less than a year,3rd doing something funny took to transmission shop and stated 3 rd gear is bad and so is valve body.called dealership bc its still under warranty tried to say I couldn't get a new one bc I didn't go to their mechanic.the transmission guy called the parts manager and stated its not the job that's warrantied but the part and after waiting 4 days, got a new valve body. I've also replaced headlights and taillights 5 times, a window regulator, a battery every 2 years, and now a control door module that controls my topside mirrors, driver window and door locks is bad.I've had the ac and heat stop working when foot was off gas.window coming apart from cartop; they clipped it bc it was under warranty.my door lock fell out under warrant.when does an investigation occur? I've written several news investigation shows and heard nothing.I have spent7000 dollars repairing this car and no one is listening to all these complaints out there. Help us get our money back and bf someone dies in this vehicle. I talked to the service manager he has no knowledge of any of these issues; its just my car! told him to look on the internet.

- Nashville, TN, USA

problem #16

Sep 182013

Beetle 5-cyl

  • 62,000 miles
Transmission hard shifts between 2nd and 3rd. The gas pedal also fails to respond at certain times leading to hesitation during acceleration and also while driving at speed. We have been advised by the dealer that the transmission must be replaced, and that it is not covered under warranty. This transmission problem has been described by various owners and VW has yet to acknowledge that there is a design flaw with this type of transmission.

- Windsor , CA, USA

problem #15

Sep 022013

Beetle 5-cyl

  • 70,800 miles


Vehicle is unsafe and a potential liability to drive due to a faulty transmission valve body. I am the second owner and purchased the certified vehicle through an authorized VW dealer. VW failed to notify me of an available extended warranty of a recognized issue with the vehicle. I tried reaching out to VW but they refuse to offer any repairs and notified me on the letter that "it is our hope the previous owners pass the information to you". this is an unacceptable response and I am appalled by their decision. Any assistance would be appreciated.

- Nogales, AZ, USA

problem #14

Jul 012011


  • 45,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Volkswagen Beetle. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the prndl warning light illuminated intermittently. The contact turned the vehicle off and once restarted, the warning light was off. The contact also mentioned that while driving 60 mph the vehicle independently shifted into neutral with the flashing prndl light. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where the mechanic stated that the machatronic speed sensor had to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified. The approximate failure mileage was 45,000. The current mileage was 55,000.

- Donnlley, ID, USA

problem #13

Aug 082011


  • 92,508 miles
Transmission check for valve assembly body-jerking-instability. Volkswagen won't fix. Airbag light won't go off. Windows don't work. Headlight won't work. Repaired over & over. Please google VW Beetle issues or go to edmunds.com and check. Thousands of VW Beetle owners have the exact same problems. VW refuses to acknowledge.

- Peachtree City, GA, USA

problem #12

Dec 012006

Beetle 5-cyl

  • 3,000 miles
Since the beginning when the car was purchased I noticed the transmission slipping and told the dealership many times they always advised there was no problems it stuck hard until it reached 4th gear it ran ok. All during the time until present date the tranny slipped I was finally told in early 2012 the tranny was gone and it would cost 6000K to replace the warranty had just elapsed. But during the time prior it was at the dealership for standard servicing including diagnostics and I always notified them of the transmission and was told no problems. Today I was advised that the original had an extended warranty because of an auto trans valve body issue, but was told I was no longer eligible. The car is at about 114060 miles. I would like help in getting VW America to replace this valve body because I was never notified of the problems on these cars prior to the warranty expiration. When originally purchased I had even paid an extra 3000K for the platinum warranty. Can you please help me to have VW America at the very least change out this auto trans valve body this quite possibly could be the main problem, at the time when I was told about the 6000K I could not afford the cost so I opted to take the car off the roads and set myself back in the whole by buying another vehicle with payments, in the meantime all this time I never knew about that trans valve body problems these cars were having. Thank you so much for any assistance you can offer.

- Lake Elsinore, CA, USA

problem #11

Apr 102013


  • 104,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Volkswagen Beetle. The contact stated that the vehicle failed to shift gears. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. After the diagnostic, the technician stated that the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware. The failure mileage was 104,000. The current mileage was 104,100.

- Westlake Village , CA, USA

problem #10

Mar 052012

Beetle 4-cyl Diesel

  • 48,000 miles
Vehicle rolls freely when put in park. Vehicle not stationary when gear shifter put in park. VW say it is not wear and tear but a faulty mechanism. Crtical safety defect.

- Johns Creek, GA, USA

problem #9

Jul 022012


  • 99,000 miles
The automatic transmission shifts gears erratically. The transmission shifts cause erratic engine speed during shifts resulting in tires breaking traction and unpredictable acceleration. Driving in traffic is hazardous due to sudden or delayed gear shifts in the automatic transmission. Volkswagen America has extended the warranted period for the transmission valve body due to known defects in the transmission system. Failure in the transmission valve body produces erratic driving characteristics and poses a risk to persons and property.

- Blue Springs, MO, USA

problem #8

Jun 012011


  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Volkswagen Beetle. The contact was not the driver. The contact stated that the driver was driving 45 mph and attempted to accelerate to avoid a deer on the road. The vehicle did not respond and would not accelerate. There was a repid increase in the engine rpms, but the vehicle did not accelerate. As a result, the driver crashed into the deer. The driver did not sustain any injuries. The police were notified and a report was available. The vehicle was driven to the dealer, where they stated that they were unable to duplicate failure. The dealer stated that the failure related to the megatronic unit in the transmission. The failure recurred whenever the vehicle was driven approximately thirty miles. The failure had since become more severe. The failure mileage was 60,000 and the current mileage was 90,000.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #7

Apr 022012


  • miles
The contact owns a 2006 Volkswagen Beetle. The contact stated that the transmission down-shifted independently, causing the vehicle to rapidly decelerate without warning. The contact stated that the failure had been experienced numerous times. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The failure mileage was unknown, but the current mileage was 96,000.

- Evans Citty, PA, USA

problem #6

Dec 042011

Beetle 5-cyl

  • 31,800 miles
2006 new Beetle convertible, 5 speed transmission, purchased new by myself as sole owner. Driving down road on 12/4/11 late at night suddenly could not shift gears; car would not go into any gear, causing me to have to coast in neutral through dangerous intersection in a major urban city. Car was disabled and had to be towed to shop. "transmission failure" diagnosed at only 31,800 miles? (damaged transmission parts discovered - but VW denies any responsibility). This problem appears to be widespread in Beetles, has been reported by many owners on public internet message boards, and sooner or later someone is going to be killed in an accident as a result. Personally I was lucky no one was behind me or approaching at a normal speed head on; had that been the case I would clearly have been in a major accident.

- Bayharbor Islands, FL, USA

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