definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
31,940 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 Jetta clutch problems

clutch problem

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2005 Volkswagen Jetta Owner Comments

problem #14

Apr 052008

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 108,000 miles


Car developed pronounced engine vibration at 100,000 miles. Vibration was accompanied by significant noise at idle with clutch engaged. Clutch and flywheel assembly was removed and inspected. Inspection revealed that the dual mass flywheel had failed and was the source of the noise and vibration. Clutch and flywheel were replaced with an aftermarket single mass flywheel and matching clutch.

- Huntingtown, MD, USA

problem #13

Jan 232008

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 40,180 miles
Premature clutch failure at 40,000 miles. Car at dealer for clutch replacement.

- Sparks, NV, USA

problem #12

Jan 122008


  • Manual transmission
  • 32,300 miles
Clutch gave out at 32,000 miles. Volkswagen considers this normal wear and tear.

- Salt Lake City, UT, USA

problem #11

Aug 222007

Jetta 5-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 35,720 miles


Clutch completely failed at 35,000 miles, suddenly on a highway (the car wouldn't move, it would just rev really high). I had the car towed to my local VW dealer. The VW dealer stated that there were no faulty VW parts; failure was due to a worn clutch, which I am responsible for. I filed a complaint with VW of America. I was suspicious of this diagnosis, since the clutch failed so suddenly & in all of my years of driving manual transmission cars (16 years), I have never needed to replace a worn or damaged clutch. The dealer replaced the clutch assembly, which cost me $2,070. The dealer stated that this repair is not covered under warranty, & that he would show me the worn clutch when the repair was finished. When I picked up the repaired car, I asked to see the clutch & flywheel (for signs of wear & heat marks). The service manager stated that the parts were not available for inspection; they were already disposed of & in the garbage dumpster. After reading so many complaints made by experienced manual transmission drivers about VW clutches wearing prematurely, I believe that this case may be due to a defective clutch assembly, which should be covered under warranty. I've read on VW technical service bulletins that faulty pressure plates and/or flywheels in these newer Jettas have been known to cause damage & excessive premature wear to the clutch. In my case, I wasn't able to inspect the old clutch assembly for other signs of mechanical failure (since the dealer disposed of the old parts before I had a chance to see them). Since there are so many similar complaints about VW clutches, I hope they issue a recall & reimburse the many customers that have needed to replace their clutches so soon. I am not happy about having to spend $2,070 to repair a faulty clutch in a car that is only 2 yrs old. For my next car purchase, I am considering buying from a different car company.

- Basking Ridge, NJ, USA

problem #10

Aug 102007

Jetta 5-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 15,500 miles
The contact leases a 2005 Volkswagen Jetta. While driving 2 mph, the contact attempted to shift the vehicle into second gear. She accelerated to 20 mph, but the vehicle failed to shift into gear. She drove the vehicle to her residence. The dealer stated that the failure was due to negligent driving. The current and failure mileages were 15,500. While turning onto the highway, the consumer experienced a failure of the clutch while shifting into first gear, the clutch pedal became stuck to the floor. The dealer determined the pressure plate was had cracked into 3 pieces which destroyed the entire clutch. Updated 09/05/07.

- Durham, NC, USA

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problem #9

Aug 092007

Jetta 5-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 15,000 miles
My 2005 Jetta has a broken pressure plate in the clutch. The incindent must have happened while it sitting after being driven, because I parked it and it was acting fine, then I got back in later and it wasn't working. The car has only 15K miles on it and is less than 2 years old. I don't drive the car hard and only drive about 10 miles a day, and I have been driving manual for 12 years. VW is refusing to honor the warranty and is telling me the clutch problem is my fault. I have never heard of a clutch going in 15K miles, even if I was a terrible manual driver which I am not. I have researched this problem on the web, and it looks quite common for these cheaply made VW clutches to break down and for VW to find a way to not honor the warranty. I need help standing up against them.

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #8

Dec 082006

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 35,800 miles


My flywheel exploded earlier last year and now I know that this is a common occurrence in diesel Jettas. I had to have the clutch and the flywheel replaced, and Volkswagen would not do it under warranty.

- Moose, WY, USA

problem #7

Dec 062006

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 24,355 miles
We asked our dealership to acquire it for us after our 2004 tdi was totaled. Current vehicle is a certified pre-owned we purchased April 25, 2006 with 10583 miles on it. Previous owner was Volkswagen of America. On July 2, 2006 while on vacation the clutch completely failed after driving several miles in bumper to bumper traffic it started smoking and then the pedal went to the floor and the clutch locked up. The vehicle then had about 14-15,000 miles on it. A Maine dealer determined that the hydraulic cylinder had failed and the entire clutch failed. Took more than two weeks to repair the vehicle. When the vehicle was serviced by our Virginia dealer it was reported to us that the transmission was cracked due to improper re-installation. Vehicle then had 17632 miles on it. It took another two weeks to force the Maine dealer to pay for the replacement transmission and replace it. On Dec. 6, 2006 my wife the valet parking service brought the car to her with considerable smoke coming from the clutch and the statement that it had "burned out" while trying to come up a ramp. The dealership claims abuse caused the clutch to fail and crack the flywheel in three places and warranty for the flywheel was denied. We have owned more than six standard transmission automobiles over our more than 3 0 years of driving experience and have never had a clutch fail other than the 2 failures in less than six months with this Volkswagen. Internet research informs us that this is a very prevalent problem with Volkswagen. Clearly the dual mass flywheel is defective in this vehicle and the clutch is in general prone to very premature failure.

- Mechanicsville, VA, USA

problem #6

Sep 282006

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 42,632 miles
1. turned onto an off ramp and came to a stop 2. clutch would not disengage, car towed to dealership 3. awaiting diagnostics to determine manufacturer or driver responsibility.

- Killingworth, CT, USA

problem #5

Jul 122006

Jetta 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 35,100 miles
I was driving and depressed the clutch in my car, at which time I felt a snap and I could no longer change gears. It began working again about forty minutes later, but would not shift gears at times. The dealer said that the clutch pressure plate was not releasing properly and that I needed to replace the entire clutch assembly including the flywheel, and that this is not a warranty item, even though my car has only 35000 miles and is under warranty for more than 70000 miles. This repair is quoted to cost me over 2000 dollars.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #4

May 202006

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • miles


: the contact stated while proceeding from a traffic light the clutch shattered. The dealer determined the vehicle was no longer under warranty and offered repairs at cost. The contact researched complaints for the year, make and model of the vehicle and there were a high number of complaints relating to a shattered clutch. The contact expressed there should be a recall.

- Honolulu, HI, USA

problem #3

Feb 172006

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 37,067 miles
While entering the interstate and upshifting into 5th gear, the clutch was depressed. The clutch stuck to the floor of the vehicle causing the vehicle to lose all transmission function. The vehicle coasted to the side of the road and was towed to the dealer. The dealer determined the failure was due to the clutch disc which disintegrated and was not covered since it was considered a wear item. The manufacturer was alerted and no repairs were made so the owner then paid to make the repairs, even though the vehicle was still under warranty.

- Manchester, TN, USA

problem #2

Feb 182006

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 14,000 miles
I now own a 2005. 5 new body style Jetta tdi with just under 15,000 miles on it and in 5th I can feel the clutch slipping at times which I feel is un-acceptable. And yes I do know how to drive a manual diesel, tdi and non-tdi.

- Blaine, WA, USA

problem #1

Dec 252004

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • Manual transmission
  • 11,500 miles
My wife and I purchased a 2005 VW Jetta tdi (1.9 liter diesel engine) in October of 2004. This vehicle had a heating element that was bad and eventually fixed by dealer under warranty in November of 2004. Since approx. December of 2004 we have experienced increased problems with the clutch disengaging from the flywheel while shifting up or down and while passing cars. I have since found out the car (since 2001) has a dual mass flywheel assembly installed by VW that is at root of problem. The two layered flywheel is becoming over heated and warping the clutch disc abnormally in certain spots. Some mechanics and engineers have specualated improper design, and others said transmission bolts around flywheel were probably overtightened at manufacturer. Either way, our clutch is disengaging by itself from the flywheel after we drive car for 60 or 70 miles at one time (and car is heated up). The clutch disengages after shifing up or down and sometimes while passing, causing problems negotiating speeds. This means lack of control from the driver which equals safety hazard for most. Our car started this at 11,500 miles, but dealer is refusing warranty work because his service advisor failed to note the problem we requested to have checked on three separate occasions. Dealer is also denying it is a clutch/flywheel problem since he can not duplicate it in fifteen minutes, but has refused to look any further. Most research I have done shows thousands of VW Jetta customers with same problem between 11K and 20K mileage (from 2001 to 2005 models).

- Box Springs, GA, USA

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