5.1

fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
19,013 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.

1999 Volkswagen Passat suspension problems

suspension problem

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1999 Volkswagen Passat Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #29

Sep 152008

Passat

  • 90,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I own a 1999 Volkswagen Passat in which the control arms, tie rod ends, ball joints, and bushings are failing. Based on some internet research, this is a common failure for similar makes, models, and years. The problem occurs every day, and if left unattended, results in safety problems at higher speeds. Parts will be replaced in the near future and old parts will be retained, if it is feasible.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #28

Apr 152008

Passat

  • 87,000 miles
On my vehicle, the passenger front lower control arm is failing at the ball joint. There are loud screeches at low speeds when passing over bumps coming from the ball joint evidencing the inappropriate wear. This was addressed and replaced according to service bulletin "vm" with Volkswagen in early 2005, but the part is wearing improperly again. Failure of this part could cause loss of steering and could be fatal at highway speeds.

- Denver, CO, USA

problem #27

Aug 012007

Passat 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 89,000 miles
The contact's son owns a 1999 Volkswagen Passat. While driving at an unknown speed, the contact's son heard metal rubbing near the front end of the vehicle. The contact stated that the front suspension was loose. The vehicle was taken to a dealer and they replaced the upper and lower links. The purchase date was unknown. The current mileage was 94,490 and failure mileage was 89,000.

- Freeport, MN, USA

problem #26

Jun 062005

Passat 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 68,440 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I own a 1999 VW Passat wagon. There have been some recalls about the front end. I did have it checked at least twice by my dealer who said everything was ok. As I was nearing my home today at about 25 mph the right front wheel suddenly collapsed upward into the wheel well and the car started skidding on the right side of the frame off to the right side of the road. Because I was going rather slow I was able to correct it and stop it before it went off the road. If I had been going 65-70 next to other cars on the interstate or even 40 on a two lane around town I'm sure things would not have been quite so benign and we (my family and I) may all have been injured or worse! when the wrecker lifted it the driver and I both looked at the a arm and the ends were cracked or sheared off. I did not hit anything before it happened, and did not hit anything while I have had the car. Even if I had it would seem that the inspection by the dealer should have found it. This seems like a manufacturerer problem and it is way too serious to say they weren't responsible. There could easily have been a death connected with the front wheel collapsing when you consider lost of control at highway speeds!

- Niantic, CT, USA

problem #25

Mar 302005

Passat 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,650 miles
Normal use of '99 VW Passat with an odometer reading of 99,650 lead to the failure of ront contorl arms and tie rod ends. Replacement control arm set with tie rods retails for $1,700. Purchased a set for $495 and an additional $198.75 in labor.

- Harrisburg, PA, USA

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problem #24

Nov 162004

Passat 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles
Front suspension creaks constantly while driving car. This appears to be common complaint by other owners, but Volkswagen (VW) unwilling to admit that parts are wearing too soon. Creaking started at about 45,000 miles. From other postings it appears that this will cost me at least $1,000 to repair. I am afraid to take car the VW for repairs, because of high cost. I hope this problem is not dangerous.

- Waukesha, WI, USA

problem #23

Feb 052004

Passat

  • 30 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The 1999 Passat has had a number of problems from excessive oil consumption, electrical problems, water pump defects, front end assembly and transmission problems. (nar)

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #22

Jul 182003

Passat 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 73,257 miles
The front end is "creaky." There is considerable noise, usually when turning. I suspect that the bushings in the multi-link front suspension are worn. I received an estimate from the dealer on 7/18/2003 of $1020 to fix it. I chose not to fix it at that time. Over the past year I have heard numerous stories of Passat and Audi A4S that have this same problem so I want to add another complaint to the file.

- Nashua, NH, USA

problem #21

Jul 072003

(reported on)

Passat 4-cyl

  • miles
Recall letter for replacement of tie rods on 1999 Volkswagen Passat. The front end of the vehicle squeaked. The technician found lower and upper control arm damage, the control arm boots were torn open with no lubrication which caused the squeak noise. There was also a cam shaft tensioner gasket leak which was removed and replaced.. the consumer took the vehicle to have the rods replaced after receiving the recall, however, the dealer called the consumer back and informed him, the vehicle had been inspected and it was not necessary for the work to be done, even though the recall letter stated it they would be replaced to prevent future problems.

- Lawrenceville, NJ, USA

problem #20

May 092002

Passat

  • miles
Front end knocking started at 35,000 worse when turning. Brought to dealer front right and left lower control arms needed to be replaced not certain of saftey risk if problem left unfixed.

- Shawano, WI, USA

problem #19

Mar 012002

Passat

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Bushing failure on all 4 front lower control arms. These bushings gradually became loose and began squeaking, accompanied by clunking over low-speed bumps. This is a common problem on these cars. VW has refused to officially acknowledge the defect and do a recall, even though they are paying for part of the costs for some people's repairs and they have redesigned the bushings in question. Furthermore, the relatively inexpensive bushings can be replaced without replacing the entire control arm, but dealerships refuse to do that, instead to force most customers to pay for the much more expensive control arm assembly. These bushing failures pose a danger if they fail severely enough. The only reason they aren't causing wrecks is that the failure is gradual and most owners replace them before the bushings get too bad. But this is still a safety issue and the repair is hardly optional.

- Fresno, TX, USA

problem #18

Aug 012001

Passat

  • miles
No summary listed for above vehicle.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #17

Jun 262002

Passat

  • miles
No summary listed for above vehicle.

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #16

Jun 132002

Passat

  • miles
Sypmtoms are creaking, groaning from front suspension

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #15

Apr 102002

Passat

  • miles
No summary listed for above vehicle.

- Grand Rapids, MI, USA

problem #14

May 062002

Passat

  • miles
Have contacted VW customer service and requested for coverage since this is quite a common problem on Passat. However, VW refused to cover, not even half the cost! other Passat owners have at least got all parts covered by VW! the total cost sum up with up to $1000. The main problem happening is basically I heard consistent clunking noise when turning under low speed, going over a bump, and occasional braking. According to what I have heard, this is called the "lower control arm failure" and there's a bulletin in VW that this is recognized as a problem and service providers are infomed to install particular components to fix the problem. I think this is quite a critical part for the car as we don't want the car to lose control expecially turning. And the most thing that pissed me off is that vwoa refused to cover some costs! I know at least an owner got it all covered by contacting vwoa! the first noticing of the noise was at around 40000 miles but sunnyvale VW referred that this is a noise coming out from the engine pump which is leaking at that time. Noise of course didn't resolve and I didn't even bother to ask as they can't detect it. Hopefully, I can get some help from NHTSA. Thanks

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #13

Apr 042002

Passat

  • miles
No summary listed for above vehicle.

- Nashua, NH, USA

problem #12

Apr 042002

Passat

  • miles
No summary listed for above vehicle.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #11

Sep 011999

Passat

  • miles
Very common problem. Suggest investigation/recall.no safety defect listed.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #10

Dec 152000

Passat

  • miles
07/21/01 scheduled service for clunking/rattling noise in front suspension over small road imperfections and secondly tie rod recall. Mechanic replaced tie rods, but same clunking/rattling noise occurs upon departure. Dealer ordered sway bar links, replaced on second visit. Rattling noise stops, but shortly after repair, sharper clunking resurfaces, turns into also scraping/squeaking noise on sharp turns left with time. Website and independent research indicates many instances of identical symptoms in same model of car leading to possible wheel detachment in extreme circumstances. Other dealers indicate tsbs issued, but no remedy for repair cost on this relatively late model car. Ball joints only come with kit priced at approximately $600 from dealer. After reading numerous website posts, I've become very concerned on safety of car as clunking/knocking/squeaking/scraping noises have grown louder with my vehicle. I'd feel very uncomfortable keeping/selling this car without the problem remedied. I strongly support a VW or at worst case NHTSA initiated recall on this apparent design defect to prevent recurring problems.

- Wak, MI, USA

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