really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
55,055 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.

2012 Volkswagen Jetta electrical problems

electrical problem

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2012 Volkswagen Jetta Owner Comments (Page 2 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #67

Mar 162017


  • 50,000 miles


The key for my Jetta will not come out of the ignition. This is a recurring problem in many Volkswagen and presents a safety risk if I am not able to turn off my car. This happens every single time I try to turn off my car.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #66

Feb 112017


  • 91,158 miles
I was neither able to turn off my car, nor to remove the key from the ignition. With the key in the ignition, it is not possible to lock the car from the outside. Leaving an unlocked, running car just to be able to procure the spare key in the hopes that the car could at least be locked by utilizing the second key are significant safety risks. Furthermore, this incident happened late on a weekend night, nowhere near the spare key, rendering me incapable of taking the car to a dealership within a reasonable time, forcing me to leave an unlocked car running for many hours. Running eventually out of options to stay with the car, the key broke off in a last desperate attempt to turn off the car. Living in a major city with many unsafe neighborhoods underlines the importance of being able to start and turn off a vehicle when needed, as well as to lock the vehicle to keep its passengers and contents safe at all times.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #65

Dec 082016


  • 105,000 miles
When parked and trying to shut vehicle off, the car will not shut off and the key will not come out of the ignition.

- New Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #64

Dec 082016


  • 71,000 miles


Key sticks in the ignition, will not disengage to turn the car off. This seems to be a issue that I am finding. I tried parking in a flat surface, in the driveway and no luck. This started a month ago with sticking, but the last few days have been worse. Shifting does not help the problem.

- New Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #63

May 062014


  • 12,000 miles
My 2012 Jetta with dsg automatic 6 speed transmission would have an issue of every 30-50 miles, the service wrench would pop on + cel at times. The code came up P0106. After checking with dealer, they cleared code under warranty many times and could not come up with the solution. After warranty went this was happening frequently. Took it into the dealer +-7 times til we, sort of, found the issue at hand. The main issue is when the wrench/cel would pop up, the transmission would start to shift extremely rough up and down until it simply, went away..... very confusing and frustrating to say the least. Also, when on, I would get a rich smell of fuel. Was told by dealer/VW that when this combo occurs, the engine reads a different fuel load to compensate for the "air" getting in. This happened for +-20,000 miles. Grateful car is running great now..... they cleaned the throttle body a few times + tightened intake manifold to factory specs, and the issue still came back after +-400 miles. Finally, they did a "wiggle test" on the map sensor. Then recommended I replace the map sensor. After reading online with people in similar issues, it appears you simply need to keep this sensor clean. After that diagnostic, they wanted to charge +-$125 to replace the sensor. I refuted. Since they did the test back in early September, I have had 0 issues with the car. I have contacted my local VW rep and the dealer to follow-up monthly. Where the sensor is located, it is susceptible to getting dirty. Which will then throw off the engine codes for no reason. I am thankful this is solved, for now. I have read many "P0106"ers with the same issue with Jetta's N passat's from 2010-2013 with the dsg auto transmission.

- Berwick, PA, USA

problem #62

Oct 282016


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Volkswagen Jetta. When the horn was activated, it failed to operate without warning. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 90,000.

- Huntsville, AL, USA

problem #61

Oct 172016


  • 80,000 miles


On several occasions the key is stuck in the on position and I have difficulty turning off the engine. This obviously occurs when stationary since I am turning the vehicle off.

- West Bend, WI, USA

problem #60

Oct 142016


  • 51,000 miles
Purchased 2012 VW Jetta new at local VW dealership. Currently has approx 51,000 miles on it. At around 29,000 miles ignition switch would not shut off while I was shopping-took to dealershipi and was told it was fixed- had just stuck. Less than a month later same thing happened. Dealership had the car for weeks-(this time they did provide loaner car). Most recent- prior to ignition problem currently occurring I had to have wiper motor replaced at my cost $600 plus dollars. I sat in waiting area of dealership that clearly stated we provide loaner car or shuttle service at time of your appt. Neither available on that day. I addressed this issue with service manager who was off that day. Received apologetic E-mail. Have had to replace headlight bulb and needs replaced again. Could this be an electrical issue" is this car even safe to drive my grandchildren in" I am not feelin comfortable with it. Presently as I am writing this my car has been running for 18 hours. Ignition stuck Friday eve- service dept not open on sat. When I called Friday eve basically I was told "get it over here somehow and we will take a look". presently weighing my options-needless to say I am extremely disappointed with the purchase of my first new VW. Previously had owned two used VW golf. Note: First time I was fortunately close to VW garage which is a 40 minute drive from my house-fortunate again this time that it's sitting in my driveway running until I can figure out a plan. Loved my VW-past tense. After going online I see other people have had this very experience with ignition. Seems it is going to be expensive. Very disappointed! my dealership is VW clarksburg, wv. Former star motor-1-304-623-7827. Shane leblond - "service manager"

- Philippi, WV, USA

problem #59

Oct 122016


  • miles
Key binds in ignition when turning vehicle off. This had been an ongoing issue. Key needs to be jiggled to turn ignition switch back to get key out. At times it takes a few seconds to remove key, which is not good in case car needs to be turned off and exited quickly.

- San Leandro, CA, USA

problem #58

Nov 012015


  • 66,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Volkswagen Jetta. While driving 20 mph, the vehicle accelerated forward in a jerking motion without warning. The vehicle was taken to the dealer to be serviced per a recall related to the failure; however, the failure recurred. Also, a howling sound emitted from the engine and the oil and check engine warning indicators illuminated. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer, but the failure was not diagnosed. In addition, the contact stated that the headlights became inoperable intermittently without warning. The contact also mentioned that the front driver seat independently readjusted and the steering wheel shook violently when the vehicle was driven. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the purge valve and the steering rack failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure mileage was 66,000.

- Charleston, WV, USA

problem #57

Oct 062016


  • 93,000 miles


Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine. The key will not go into the back (off) position, so the car remains running. This is apparently a known problem according to the dealership, so it should be a covered repair under a recall. This is not an inexpensive fix.

- Oregon, WI, USA

problem #56

Oct 012016


  • 35,552 miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine.

- Fredericksburg, VA, USA

problem #55

Sep 232016


  • 45,000 miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine. Key will not turn off engine and key can not be removed. This occurs when the car is parked and I try to turn off the engine.

- Orange, CA, USA

problem #54

Aug 012016


  • miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine. (car in park, stationary.) must turn key back and forth several times to remove. Ongoing since early August.

- Sunderland, MD, USA

problem #53

Sep 162016


  • miles
Key gets stuck in ignition when turning off the engine.

- Stafford, TX, USA

problem #52

Aug 262016


  • 112,103 miles
Car wont start after you shut it off. Replaced the battery twice and the alternator three times in three days. No charge from the alternator to the battery. Had it tested the battery is good but still showing a bad alternator. Replaced all the fuses as well. Diagnostic is telling us nothing except the alternator isn't charging the battery. Car has been sitting for two weeks because I'm tired of paying people to look at the car and cant figure out whats wrong with it. I'm afraid to let my daughter drive it because she is pregnant and I don't want her stranded on the road or the car cut off on the highway and she get seriously hurt.

- North Augusta, SC, USA

problem #51

Nov 152015


  • miles
The horn has not been working since November 2015. There is a recall on the air bag in the horn.

- Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #50

Aug 252016


  • miles
Key got stuck in the ignition with motor running. Could not turn to "off" position. Although I could kill the motor by releasing the clutch (manual transmission), I still could not turn the key off and, therefore, would have to just let the battery die after many hours of sitting there with the key on. I could not leave the vehicle unattended as anyone could have gotten in, started it right up, and left with it. Did a google search and found that opinion placed the blame on a faulty ignition switch. Also discovered many others with this exact same problem who had to have their ignition switches replaced, so this is a known problem with Volkswagen.

- Burkburnett, TX, USA

problem #49

Jul 112016


  • 46,600 miles
Like the recall on 2011 Jetta horn the 2012 Jetta horn have the same issue. While driving through a parking lot was hit by a driver backing up and vould not warn the driver due to ahorn that does not work. Today I was almost sandwiched between a semi-truck and a car moving into my lane. Luckily for me and thekid the driver in the car got back in their own lane. It appears the trunk light does not work either. This is the second time the horn and trunk light stopped working, last time it fixed it's self this time it seems to need help to resolve the problem. Horn clicks no sound, no alarm warning sounds.

- Allen, TX, USA

problem #48

Aug 152016


  • 65,000 miles
Ignition key will not turn off after starting car. Have to jiggle and tap on key to eventually get key to turn to the off position. Once out of ten times the key may turn off normally. I have tried moving the steering wheel back and forth while turning key off. I've also tried moving the gear shifter to see if the lock is preventing the key from turning. Nothing really seems to work. Then for no reason at all I you will be able to turn it off. Seems like the tumblers get out of line or something. Car is parked on flat level driveway when this happens.

- Newport News, VA, USA

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