definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
27,917 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.

2003 Volkswagen Jetta clutch problems

clutch problem

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2003 Volkswagen Jetta Owner Comments

problem #12

Mar 042008

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 46,608 miles


The clutch on my VW Jetta burned out on a major interstate and was a very dangerous situation. The car had 46,604 miles on it and should have lasted many miles above that but I have learned of 100's who own the same car with this same situation.

- Fort Mill, SC, USA

problem #11

Jul 052007

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 34,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Volkswagen Jetta. The contact stated that she experienced premature clutch failure. The clutch was replaced at 34,000 miles. The current mileage is 34,489 and failure mileage was 34,000. Updated 09/17/07

- Pasadena, CA, USA

problem #10

Aug 112006

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 47,962 miles
2003 VW Jetta clutch and flywheel out at 47,962 miles. I am an experienced manual transmission driver. This is not my fault, and this is very premature for a clutch failure. The dealership wants $2088 plus tax for parts and labor. My dealership quoted me at $1400 back home, but im stuck in Colorado waiting for the customer care to get back to me. Every independent mechanic I have talked to including VW certified; but not affiliated have told me that even the worst clutch -rider(which I am not) would have clutch failure at about 100,000 miles. VW is too cheap to submit a recall for the clutch assemblies on their 2000-2004 vehicles. With the volume of complaints all over the web and even on this site, there is no doubt in my mind that there is a serious problem that needs to be addressed, and im not just speaking about the extremely outrageous replacement and repair costs. Plus! they now use non- re-surface flywheels...

- Bozeman, MT, USA

problem #9

Jul 142005

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 38,116 miles


* 2003 Volkswagen Jetta with 38,116 miles / one owner * VW case # 50260581 * repair location: North point VW, sherwood, ar (501) 945-5353 the problem this vehicle's clutch and flywheel both failed (completely worn) at 38,116 miles, well before the average expected life... possible material deficiency. Background all service for the vehicle has been completed and documented with VW. This vehicle has not been subjected to any extreme driving in any way. Manufacturer's assistance none. The clutch is a wear item and therefore not covered by the warranty. Although the local service manager agrees that a clutch should not fail at this low mileage, neither he, or the VW help center (800 411-6688) would help in the $1,600 repair. Bottom line after doing a google search for "VW Jetta clutch failure", I noted numerous reports of premature VW clutch failure. Is this a "weak link" in this vehicle" is VW trying to hide an inferior part"

- Cabot, AR, USA

problem #8

Aug 102004

Jetta 6-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 26,888 miles
Blown clutch on new 2003 VW Jetta tdi 1.8. first occurance in August of 04 with 26,000 miles and again now in may of 05 with 40,500 or 14,000 miles to another blown clutch. I am not a teenage driver, I am 23 with excellent driving skills and have driven clutches all my adult driving life. There is something wrong with their clutch system. I have found tons of evidence in bulletin boards. VW is blaming this on poor driving skills and I believe this is a serious defect that occurs every 20,000 miles. Consumers like me are gettign ripped off on this one left and right. You need to do something. This is no isolated incident!

- Centerville, UT, USA

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problem #7

Apr 052005

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 21,851 miles
Normal driving conditions clutch burned out at 21,851 miles need to replace clutch

- Clarkston, MI, USA

problem #6

Dec 262004

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 25,000 miles


Driving along, clutch started to slip at about 25,000 miles, when taken to dealer they said the pressure plate is completely worn and its my fault, after much research this is quite common. I have gotten nowhere with customer service or any number of managers.

- Plano, TX, USA

problem #5

Nov 282004

Jetta 5-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 29,000 miles
I have a 2003 VW Jetta tdi. At 29,000 miles the clutch failed in the middle of a highway in a blizzard. The VW dealer has not given me any information other than the clutch failed due to my driving and that it will cost $2000. I have driven a Jeep Wrangler over 100000 and never had a problem with the clutch. My family and I were in danger in the middle of interstate 70 for several hours. In addition to calling the VW dealer, I also spoke with 2 customer service representative who told me there is nothing they can do. I had the car in 2 weeks ago for another problem and the dealer never told me that my clutch was not funtioning properly. VW sold me the car based on quality and reliablity in bad weather. They certaintly cannot back what they are marketing to consumers. I have never had such a terrible experience as this. I will be seeking legal action if I am not remibursed for my troubles.

- Denver, CO, USA

problem #4

Sep 082004

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 22,000 miles
Repeated complete clutch failure on my 2003 Jetta. I am an experienced standard transmission driver and never had problem like this with any other car. The clutch seems to be of low quality and volkwagen is blaiming clutch failure on the driver - easy way out.

- Boca Raton, FL, USA

problem #3

Aug 202003

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 17,000 miles
Complete clutch failure on my 2003 Jetta. I am an experienced standard transmission driver.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #2

Aug 012004

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 21,453 miles
Complete clutch failure, (the car will idle in all 5 gears) suddenly that left my car disabled on the highway with my 2 Y/O son in his car seat 30 miles away from anywhere.

- Fayetteville, AR, USA

problem #1

Dec 182003


  • Manual transmission
  • 5,128 miles
Complete and sudden failure of clutch, resulting in total loss of power in rush hour traffic.

- Boulder, CO, USA

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