hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
50,299 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.

2009 Volkswagen Passat electrical problems

electrical problem

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2009 Volkswagen Passat Owner Comments

problem #9

Nov 032015


  • 70,000 miles


The contact owns a 2009 Volkswagen Passat. While driving approximately 30 mph, the vehicle stalled. The vehicle was able to be restarted, but the failure recurred. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The VIN was unavailable. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 70,000.

- Peoria, IL, USA

problem #8

Jul 132015


  • 90,000 miles
The steering wheel controls stopped working one day, along with the horn. Several days later, the airbag warning light came on, and the display shows "airbag fault" every time I start the car. I purchased an extended warranty for this car, and VW refuses to cover the repair. My local dealership diagnosed the problem to be a faulty clock spring.

- Summerville, SC, USA

problem #7

May 142014

Passat 4-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
The car suddenly has 50% or less power and begins stumbling very badly. Acceleration is so poor that it's quite dangerous in heavy traffic and the ability to pull off the road is severely hampered. The only way I'm able to keep the car moving and running is to use the manual feature of the automatic transmission and keep the RPM's very high. The four coil packs in the car were replaced this spring. Suddenly, the same exact problem is back again 4 months later. Codes were random misifre and multiple misfires at various cylinders. Strange that all four packs go out at the same time...." that's not logical unless is something other than normal wear causing the issue. This problem has occurred twice and both time it begins in the middle of heavy traffic where the situation is very dangerous as the power loss is nearly complete. Both times were under acceleration when the heavy stumbling occurred. I turned the car off and disconnected the battery for 5 min. To hopefully reset the cars epc as the problem is so sudden it almost certainly is electrical. There is no logical explanation for four coil packs all needing to be replaced at the same time and 4 months after the last replacement..." undoubtedly a consistently dangerous situation.

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #6

Jul 282014

Passat 4-cyl

  • 57,555 miles


I stopped at a stop sign, the car accelerated normally and after a few minutes the engine sputtered, the check engine light illuminated, and the battery light illuminated. The engine quit. Attempts to restart the engine failed. I was located at an intersection and pushed the car off to the side of the road. I attempted to restart the engine and noticed an aroma of burning plastic. I opened the hood and there was smoke emanating under the top engine cover, top LH side viewed from the front to the rear. Upon further investigation I noticed that there was a fire under the cover. I removed the cover and extinguished the fire. The #1 ignition coil harness was melted from the fire and associated fire damage was noted on the inside of the engine cover above the engine coil location. I had the vehicle towed to the local dealership and they confirmed that the failure of the #1 engine coil was the cause of the fire. I reported the incident in detail to the Volkswagen America customer support as soon as I returned home. Vehicle is currently undergoing repairs to replace the defective items. I was told there were no current recalls in effect. I went to the NHTSA website and found that this issue has been previously investigated and no recall was issued at the time. I felt obligated to report this incident as it pertains to public safety.

- Naples, FL, USA

problem #5

Jul 062011

Passat 4-cyl

  • 30,182 miles
For the last 4 years, I've been dealing with major mechanical and non-mechanical issues with my Volkswagen (VW) Passat 2009, which I bought brand new in 2008. VW's mechanics found that my car had defective parts in it, which were there from the time I bought it. I have had so many problems with the car that I don't trust it, even though VW's mechanics said they've either fixed or replaced the bad parts, but each time I've taken it in for repairs in the past, I've had the same parts repaired or replaced over and over. A summary of these issues: - rear side window sunscreen hook - replaced due to falling out " year 2009 - rear windshield sunscreen - replaced because it had broken ? year 2011 - engine fault - car died and running roughly ever since ? year 2011 - engine light coming on 4 times ? years 2011, 2012, 2013 & 2014 - driver?S door lock - had stopped locking ? year 2012 - engine cover - screws fell out of the rear of engine cover ? year 2012 - 2 water pumps - replaced due to coolant draining completely out of the reservoir ? years 2012 & 2013 - knob to adjust side mirrors came off and now unable to adjust side mirrors " year 2013 I have paid nearly $40,000 to date on this defective vehicle and VW doesn't seem to care how many times I've been put in harms way and inconvenienced. I also have relatives and associates who've had problems with their similar model vws too, so I know I can't be the only one who has had these mechanical issues with a VW in the us. I feel there should be an investigation into VW Corp. Of some sort by government officials to uncover the defective construction of my car and others, so all of us who've suffered through this will be redeemed in some way and future consumers will be safer by VW improving their vehicles' construction.

- Richmond, TX, USA

problem #4

Nov 142011

Passat 4-cyl

  • 40,286 miles
There are 3 complaints. I have purchased 2 Volkswagen Passats in 2009. One is working fine except windshield tank leak, and the other one has the leakage and at the same time an engine problem. I would like to recall the other one of which I have registered with vehicle id here followed by the below reasons and requests. 1. windshield tank leakage since there was no accident and it naturally leaked. 2. on the 17th of November 2011, the car suddenly stopped and exhaled black smoke and I could not drive any more. I definitely stopped and called a wreck car and went directly to the dealer. The dealer reported as steering column module problem. (also mentioned about injector ) 3. on the 14th of September 2012, I was on my way to work and quite far away from the company, the car suddenly stopped with the same problem as 2011. I was late for work for sure and it was almost life threatening circumstance because of the environment. I called the wreck car and here is another report from the dealer. "customer states vehicle was driving rough, shaking and emitting smoke excessively: Smelled of fuel: Made it to the dealership and will not start. Check and advise. Inspected vehicle retrieved P0300 random misfire P0303 cylinder #3 misfire and P0087 for fuel rail. Noticed large amounts of white smoke coming from exhaust and strong odor of fuel...)" 4. I have power train warranty for 5 years or 60K mile (which will be the first) and the dealer fixed 2 times for free because of the warranty. Now even the warranty is being terminated and I have no other ways to secure my safety. Followed by the above reasons, I will not be able to drive this car which I have purchased in 2009. When I drive this car, I do not feel safe and even feel life threatening danger while I am driving because those moments in the past were very dangerous.

- Mcallen, TX, USA

problem #3

May 262012

Passat 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,800 miles


The contact owns a 2009 Volkswagen Passat. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the vehicle's engine stalled without warning. The failure was experienced several times and the vehicle was taken to the dealer several times for the failure. The dealer performed a diagnostic which located the failure at the battery. The dealer replaced the battery, fuel pump and the fuel pump control module but the failure was not corrected. The vehicle continued to stall sporadically. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure but the vehicle was not repaired. The failure and the current mileage were 62,800 updated 07/11/12

- Evans , GA, USA

problem #2

Dec 142009


  • 20,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Volkswagen Passat. While parked for 30 minutes the vehicle caught on fire. The fire started in the front under the engine. The fire department stated it could be an electrical fire or a leak in the engine. The vehicle was completely destroyed. The manufacturer has not been notified. The insurance company was performing an investigation. The failure mileage was 20,000.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #1

Nov 232009


  • 12,871 miles
Failure of key (fob or what ever VW calls it) to start vehicle when inserted in ignition switch. This failure has occurred twice and resulted in ignition switch needing to be replaced by dealer. On the second occurrence the key itself shorted out and would not allow me to open power doors; however, the key would allow me to open the power rear hatch so that I could crawl through car to unlock doors. Today the other key started acting up for my wife and would not allow her to unlock doors and she had to crawl through car to unlock doors. The service manager at the dealer has the first faulty key for which he was to get us a replacement and we are waiting on VW to replace faulty key. I do not know if dealership still has faulty ignition switches but the service manager still has my key. The dates of the ignition switch replacements are 01/20/2009 & 09/09/2009. The car was in service less than 15 days before the first ignition switch needed to be replaced. I left my key with the service manager when we picked up the car on 09/13/2009.

- Geneseo, NY, USA

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