really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
838 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.

2013 Volkswagen Passat electrical problems

electrical problem

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2013 Volkswagen Passat Owner Comments

problem #4

Feb 012013

Passat 6-cyl

  • 200 miles


The backup camera in this vehicle frequently fails to activate when the vehicle is placed in reverse. VW officials acknowledge, in a written response, a delay time of one (1) to two (2) minutes before the camera will activate. It is an unreasonable expectation, from a consumer / driver standpoint, to wait 1 to 2 minutes for a camera to activate for a driver to determine if it is safe to backup. VW continues to ignore this deficiency despite the number of deaths and injuries each year caused by backup accidents.

- Centreville, VA, USA

problem #3

Jul 312012

Passat 4-cyl Diesel

  • 200 miles
Backup camera is slow to start. May take from 5 to 20 seconds to become operational after start up. This is hazard with respect to reliance on backup cameras by drivers to see obstructions behind the car. Failure of camera to start up quickly results in reduced safety because drivers will back up without camera operational. I can start my car and back out of driveway and reach the corner of my block before the camera starts up and shows me the road disappearing behind me. A camera does not replace driver obligations to make sure that obstructions are not behind their car, but the camera is also there to be a safety feature and it is not reliable as a safety feature do to its extremely slow start up. Individuals do not like to wait 30 seconds at a stop light much less 20 just to back out of their driveway. This is a design or manufacturing issue that should be corrected to ensure that the backup camera is a reliable safety feature as it was intended.

- Laramie, WY, USA

problem #2

May 102013

Passat 4-cyl Diesel

  • 2,800 miles
As many others have stated on this site and all over the internet, the back-up camera is ridiculously slow to come on. Most times, I can back out of my driveway, stop, and be going forward down the street before the back-up camera even comes on. At that point, I'm driving up to a block away with my back-up camera still on. While most of the time this is simply an annoying inconvenience, it is also a very real safety issue. One of the reasons I buy cars with back-up cameras is to make sure I'm able to see anything small (like a child, bike, etc.) behind the car while backing that my mirrors won't show. My Lexus also has this camera (as did my prius that I traded for the Passat) and it came on within one second of putting the car in reverse. The Passat is routinely taking 6-8 seconds, and has taken as long as 15 seconds to turn on. I've noticed that it is not just the camera that is slow. Many of the other functions of the touch screen are also slow to react. The VW dealer I bought the car from says that VW is aware of the issue but it is simply a slow processor so there is nothing they can do about it.

- Yakima, WA, USA

problem #1

Jan 202011

Passat 6-cyl

  • 150 miles
The backup camera is very slow to respond when placing the vehicle into reverse (15-25 seconds). Frequently, the camera will not activate until the vehicle has completed backing up and the vehicle is placed into drive. Volkswagen is aware of the issue, having identified it in a VW technical bulletin. I contacted Volkswagen customer care in auburn, mi, about resolving the issue. I received a letter from[xxx], dated 22 April 2013, which stated: "... your vehicle is operating as per its designed intent. As such, we will not be able to make a repair to [the] system." Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6). Updated 05/05/14.

- Centreville, VA, USA

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