fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
103,667 miles
Total Complaints:
3 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. both overhead valve cover gasket replaced (2 reports)
  2. not sure (1 reports)
2003 Volkswagen Passat engine problems

engine problem

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2003 Volkswagen Passat Owner Comments

problem #3

Jun 022011

Passat Wagon V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles


It seems like everything is going wrong with this car at once. First I find out there are problems with the motor mounts...they have to be replaced before the engine falls out...pretty severe...then the mechanic informs me that the overhead valve gaskets need to be replaced :( $$$ I do not have... Had similar problems with a previous VW quite a few years ago. At the time I thought it was an isolated incident with the VW Cabriolet. Since then have had a Volvo but replaced it with the Passat wagon. So in retrospect, a second VW (different model) with exact same problems seems to be a pretty good indicator that these are continuing issues with VWs.

- , Sumter, SC, USA

problem #2

Jan 022008

Passat 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,000 miles

Where to start? Lets just start with the fixing of the recalls and wow could their be anymore. About 3 months ago I took my car to have all the lovely recalls fixed I told them about how the car was being really sluggish and just wouldn't go when I hit the gas they said they would look at it. When I picked my car up they said nothing was wrong when clearly something was wrong but I was so furious and didn't feel like fighting with them I drove off. I needed gas so went straight to a gas station when I pulled in I saw flames yes that's right flames shooting out from under my car. The good thing is when I turned my car off it went out. I immediately called the Volkswagen dealership and they sent a tow truck out. When I got there the service guy said I was lying and that the car could not have been on fire, so I asked if I could be there when he put my car on the rack and lo and behold charcoal car! So at this point they are of course being extremely nice (a complete 180 of how I was originally treated). They said their is a silent recall on the heat shield and catalytic converter and then I said isn't this something that should be checked if it can catch your car on fire? Okay long story short they fixed the catalytic converter and heat shield but my engine light was still on and the car was still not running right, misfiring and sometimes wouldn't start (unless you waited an hour). So yesterday I took it to a mechanic and he said my gasket cover was leaking oil onto my sparkplugs and that was causing all my problems. So I sold a kidney and got it fixed once more, but once again my engine light is still on. AHHH! I asked him about it and he said that some O2 sensor or temp sensors are bad and that I have to bring it back to the dealership. The car is running 100% better I must admit but I feel like as soon as I get one thing fixed something else goes wrong. So far I have changed the water pump, fuel pump, heated seats burnt a hole through my leather, brake lights, gasket cap, catalytic converter, heat shield, fuel injector, timing belt, temp sensor... and that's all I can think of at this moment but I know their is more. Is anyone else having these problems or am I just crazy and any suggestions please. I'm in nursing school and can't afford a car note at this time.

- , Kenner, LA, US

problem #1

May 052008

Passat GLX 2.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,000 miles

Was surprised to find out that my car had a overhead valve cover gasket failure. first found oil in sparkplug well then a month later a significant amount of smoke started coming from under the hood at all times from oil leaking onto exhaust manifold.

- , Waco, TX, USA

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