hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
53,794 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 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2005 Volkswagen Jetta Owner Comments

problem #18

Aug 152011

Jetta 4-cyl Diesel

  • 118,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Volkswagen Jetta. While driving approximately 65 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The failure would occur intermittently. The engine would also misfire and the vehicle would jerk and decelerate. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnostics where the technician advised the contact that the B valve, the glow plug and the glow plug harness would have to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired but the failure continued after the repair. The vehicle was taken to a second dealer for diagnostics where the technicians stated that the direct shift gearbox unit would have to be replaced. The contact referenced a recall for the 2009-2010 models under NHTSA campaign id number: 09V333000 (power train:automatic transmission) but was advised by the manufacturer that the recall did not include the 2005 model vehicles. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 118,000. Updated 04/02/12

- Apex, NC, USA

problem #17

Sep 012010

Jetta 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
I have a 2005 new Jetta and at around 60,000 miles it shifts hard from 1st to 2nd gear and 2nd to 3rd gear. It also downshifts abruptly. The hard jerking scares me when driving because it can cause an accident. At some point VW has to realize this is a serious safety hazard. I got the recall letter about the valve body and when I took it to a VW dealer for service I was told that my car didn't have a valve body issue. They said I needed a new transmission. Cost $6,000. I contacted VW by phone and was told there was nothing they could do. Now at close to 70,000 miles the jerking has worsen and I have become very concerned about the safety of this car while I'm driving it.

- Maywood, CA, USA

problem #16

Jun 012011

Jetta 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,000 miles
I purchased a 2005 new Jetta automatic transmission in July of 2010. It currently has 72,000 miles. 3 issues. One, when the car is first started up, a clanging noise occurs and lasts for approx 30 seconds, then it sounds like a vent closes and the sound goes away. Two, the right front headlight will not turn off sometimes when I pull along side a curb. I have to restart the car, back the car up, then pull the car forward to get it to turn off. The third item occurs intermittently not always and involves shifting of gears. When the car is going approximately 20 to 30 miles per hour, it seems to bounce back and forth between 2nd and 3rd gear a little rough but not jerky and sometimes when coasting through an intersection the car seems to hesitate when I am ready to push on the gas. But then, after a couple seconds, engages into gear with a lunge. I recently took the car to a transmission shop for analysis and the man said he could not produce any codes. I told him I had received the letter about the transmission's valve body warranty extension. He drove the car and said the car definitely lunges and told me to get it to a VW dealership for a check up as he was not an authorized VW tech. I took the car to the nearest dealership which is 2 hours away from my home. They drove the car 3 separate times trying to produce the scenario I described but could not. The tech told me it sounded like I was describing the valve body issue and he would tell the service advisor that he had felt the prob and that my car needed a new valve body. When I picked up my car, the car would not drive above 20 mph without the engine roaring and the shifting hard into gear everytime. Me and my daughter had pulled out into a very busy 40 mph traffic. It was scary. At one point the car would not go into any gear! I returned the car to the dealership and told them something was seriously wrong. Next day, they told me my car needs a new transmission at my cost of $5000. What happen?

- Jefferson City, MO, USA

problem #15

Sep 282010


  • 100,000 miles


I have a 2005 Volkswagen Jetta my husband was driving the car and the battery blew up under the hood. Took the car in and was told it jumped timing tools and parts were unavailable and the engine had to be replaced this took three months and now the transmission will go into neutral while driving the Volkswagen maintenance department stated there was a recall on the transmission and is 8 miles over warranty and they will no fix the car.

- Georgia, GA, USA

problem #14

Oct 102010

Jetta 4-cyl

  • 125,000 miles
2005 Jetta gli - the transmission stop working because of an oil sensor in the transmission. The transmission stop working completely and will stop working in the road and can cause an accident. I reported to Volkswagen and they said it was too bad you need to fix it. Need your help on this matter please help.

- Haltomcity, TX, USA

problem #13

Oct 302010

Jetta 5-cyl

  • 160,000 miles
Hard shift from 2nd to 3rd gear and from 1st to 2nd gear. Problem causes car to violently jerk and poses a potential safety issue when attempting to accelerate or stop.

- Toledo, OH, USA

problem #12

Jan 012010

Jetta 5-cyl

  • 80 miles


There is a long running issue with the 2005 1/2 VW Jetta V transmission valve body that is a safety issue with the transmission. When the trans gets hot sitting in traffic. The transmission slips in and out of gear or shifts very hard or will not shift at all and may cause a rear end accident as the Jetta does not shift. VW America does know of the problem and issued a extended warranty to 100,000 miles or 7 years. But after doing extensive research there are Jetta's that are out there that have mileage over the 100,000 miles. When you call VW, they refuse to help and do not care about the safety of the people that own their product. There is also issues with premature brake light bulbs and head light bulbs burning out.

- Saugus, CA, USA

problem #11

Jul 072010

Jetta 4-cyl

  • 108,000 miles
When sitting in stop and go traffic, the transmission shifts very hard in and out of the shifting sequence. When that happens the transmission will take a few seconds to shift into gear and thump very hard. After calling a VW dealership, I was informed that this is a very common issue with the new Jetta's and beetles. Also there is very heavy crazing with the head lamp fixtures and cannot be repaired and causes serious impairment at night when the head lights are on.

- Saugus, CA, USA

problem #10

Apr 222010


  • 55,000 miles
When I am driving and come to a complete stop my car does a sudden jerk. When accelerate my car also jerks when I step on my gas pedal.

- Pasadena, CA, USA

problem #9

Dec 092009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
We have a 2005 Jetta tdi automatic. This car was bought new and has been serviced at every interval by VW. We have had a common concern about the car moving forward in drive in erratic fashion when cold after about 6 months. We informed VW about this concern and they said nothing was wrong. Last week my wife was backing out of the driveway and the car stalled in the middle of the road. We tried everything to get it started but it would not turn over. We had it towed to our VW dealer who informed us that it would cost $600 just to make a determination as to what the cause was. We gave them the go ahead and a day latter they informed us that the dual mass flywheel has disintegrated which in turn destroyed the transmission. This dmf appears to be a common problem with VW's in general. In europe VW will fix the problem free of charge, but not in the us. We are waiting to hear from VW on what if anything they will do. The service manager was no help in this matter, except to tell us it was not covered. Stay tuned as we enter the twilight zone of design defects with VW!

- Shoreview, MN, USA

problem #8

May 312009


  • 62,000 miles


The Volkswagen tdi 1.9L engine when coupled to the dsg( direct shift gear) transmission has an extremely high failure rate of the dmf (dual mass flywheel). Failures have occurred between 10K and 100K miles. The internal construction of the flywheel is improper and will separate leading to the total failure of the unit. When the unit fails it causes a very specific and potentially deadly set of circumstances. The dmf can separate and then fracture into large shrapnel type pieces. This shrapnel will the cause the transmission and possibly the engine to seize. When the seizure occurs is causes the front tires to lock and subsequent loss of control of the vehicle resulting in possible injury or death. The shrapnel can also cause the failure of the transmission case resulting it the loss of pressurized transmission fluid. This fluid can contact the turbocharger and result in an under hood fire. Catastrophic engine failure is common as well. Vwa(Volkswagen of America) is aware of this problem and has redesigned the dmf. The new design has not failed. The dmf has been recalled in the european union and australia as a safety concern. Vwa has been successful in not covering this repair under even it's standard warranty. No voluntary recall has been issued. I currently have an example of the failed part available. This model has the potential to cause injury or death on a large scale if not addressed.

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #7

Apr 252008


  • 49,210 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Volkswagen Jetta. On April 25, 2008, while driving 35 mph, the contact shifted the clutch into third gear, but the clutch never shifted back into position. She pulled the vehicle over and had it towed to the dealer. The dealer stated that the pin for the clutch assembly chaffered and failed. Prior to the failure, the contact smelled a burning odor coming from the engine. The dealer stated that the transmission fluid was leaking. The failure was repaired, but the contact wonders if the two failures are related. The vehicle is currently at the dealer for repair. The failure mileage was 49,210.

- Frankfort, IL, USA

problem #6

May 012005


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Pretty much since I leased my car in April of 05 there has been problems. When I would put my car into reverse it would shift hard. Then 3 months later I would have to take my foot off the brake and put it back on the brake for it to go into reverse. As time went on when the transmission would engage into reverse it would bounce back. Now when I put it in reverse I can take my foot off the break and leave it off for 5 minutes and nothing, no reverse. I can pump my brakes and no reverse. I have to put it back into park and then back into reverse for it to go into reverse. The dealership says that it is normal. But it is far from normal. I just want them to take back the car. Now my drive is starting to engage hard.

- Costa Mesa, CA, USA

problem #5

Dec 042005

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
At cold-start, automatic transmission hesitates then lurches into either drive or reverse, which is especially unnerving when driving in areas with in/declines because the vehicle rolls like a manual. Told by the dealer twice that there was no problem because the vehicle's transmission was functioning to mfg specs. This is a problem.

- San Rafael, CA, USA

problem #4

Jun 272005

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Shifting from park to either reverse or drive while engine is cold, vehicle hesitates and then suddenly jerks into gear.

- West Orange, NJ, USA

problem #3

Dec 242004


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
This has been reported by others and I would like to report it as well, so that VW will eventually be forced to make a recall on this malfunction. When I start my car after it has been sitting for and hour or more, I place my foot on the brake, put it either into reverse or drive, and if I am on any hill, very small or large, when I take my foot off of the brake, the car will roll downhill. The first few times this happened, I almost rolled the car over a curb and down a large embankment. The only way to stop the car is to apply the brake again, and then release the brake and quickly apply the gas. When that is done, the car very abruptly jumps into gear.

- Meriden, CT, USA

problem #2

Apr 252005

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
In the mornings the car will not go into reverse when your foot is on the brake, you have to let off on the brake and reverse the engine a bit, then the car jumps into reverse, suddenly and unexpectly lurches backward. Dealers response: Back your car into your garage or parking space at night so you don't need to use reverse in the morning.

- Calistoga, CA, USA

problem #1

Jan 122005

Jetta 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10 miles
This probably is the same as the existing complaint number 10079735 for Volkswagen Jetta 04. 1. it happens only when it is cold. If it is cold, the problem is repeatable. 2. while pushing the brake, we move the shift from park to either drive or reverse (it's the same). Then normally, torque is transmitted through driveshaft through the transmission. However, Jetta does not function as such. 3. the transmission only can engages when I release the brake almost completely. Up to the position, it is the same as neutral. That introduces sudden and abrupt start of the car.

- Irvine, CA, USA

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