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Ratings on over 1,000 new & used models going back 5 years, from the Center from Auto Safety. Learn more about The Car Book 2018 here.

8.9

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$1,490
Average Mileage:
89,850 miles
Total Complaints:
9 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace ABS module, pump (6 reports)
  2. not sure (3 reports)
2009 Volkswagen Rabbit brakes problems

brakes problem

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2009 Volkswagen Rabbit Owner Comments

problem #9

Mar 222018

Rabbit

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,414 miles

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

Brought my 2009 Volkswagen Rabbit to VW dealership for preventative maintenance servicing that I normally do every 10,000 miles (cost $588) for oil change, tire rotations, "29 point inspection" and a few other things. After servicing I drove car for 5 miles and ABS warning lights came on. Brought car back to dealership and had to spend another $1539 getting the ABS modules replaced. Not sure what the point of preventative maintenance is if you can't notice a problem that will occur 5 miles later.

- Justin F., Oakland, US

problem #8

Apr 032017

Rabbit 2.5L

  • Manual transmission
  • 118,000 miles

So VW issued a recall for this, but is essentially able to refuse to perform it.

The recall is supposedly a software fix designed to detect bad ground because the module was manufactured with an improper solder & the solder breaks. If 1 or both of 2 codes come up after the software update, then the module must be replaced. Basically, the software update is more sensitive to the 2 codes that this grounding issue causes. It's a microscope for bad grounds. So what if you are already experiencing bad enough grounds that the codes are present prior to the update? Well, VW tells you to pound salt.

Cause that's what happened to me. Code 16352 with 96 in line 4. If I had it AFTER the update, I'd get mine replaced. But because I have it before the update was performed, they can't do the software update & therefore won't replace it. They even had the gall to tell me that I can need to pay the $2300 for a replacement module & pump setup so that they can perform the software update so that they can tell me if the new module I just installed needs replaced for free. How absolutely bonkers is that?

Essentially, if your ABS system is currently running OK without faults, you'll get this software update. And if they find a potential future problem after the software update, you'll get a replacement. However, if your car is actually experiencing the ABS issue that generates either of these 2 faulty ground error codes, you can't get the software update. And because you don't have the software update, they won't do the replacement either.

So if your car is fine, they'll break it a certain way & fix it. If your car is already broken in that same way, YOU have to fix it. Which makes this recall sorta pointless, don't you think? The people that are having a problem that initiated this recall are the ones that getting told "we're not helping you", while those that aren't experiencing any issues are being told "we're going to fix your car that's not broken".

As a stupid analogy, let's say that this recall were a pair of binoculars & the ABS ground issues were Godzilla; If they need to give you binoculars to see Godzilla on the horizon, they'll do something about stopping him. But if you're sitting there & say "you know what, I don't really need the binoculars to know that Godzilla is like 15 feet in front of me", then he's your problem. That's what this feels like. Because I don't need their fancy ABS ground fault detecting software to find the ground fault that is there, then it's my problem. But if I needed their fancy software to detect the faults, it's their problem.

- The D., Pittsburgh, PA, US

problem #7

Jul 152017

Rabbit 2.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 146,000 miles

One day all the lights on our dash went crazy (ABS, EPC, Check Engine, Brake, Steering System, Air Bag, and Fuel when accelerating) and the ABS warning light would beep repeatedly. On top of all the lights, the car started driving weird, like we had little control with the steering wheel, and RPMs wouldn't go above 4000. The Speedometer also stopped working. The gas gauge would bounce from empty to its current status as we would accelerate. Thinking it may be an issue with our shocks and the car being level, we replaced them. Nothing happened, so after researching the issue a little on the web, we learned there were a lot of ABS module issues that sounded exactly like what we were going through. We FINALLY came across an article about the recall for these ABS issues. I called into VW's recall line, and they verified my car did fall into the particular recall. We took it into the dealership, and they still have it. They said that there was a Check Engine light that prevented them from fixing the car, but I repeatedly told them there was never a Check Engine light until the issues with the ABS began, and in fact, we'd done plenty of research and the engine problem most likely stemmed from the fact there's no response from the ABS module. We had to pay for a full diagnostic test out of pocket and are still waiting from the dealership on what happened there. These guys haves AWFUL customer service, by the way. The only way we get any status on the situation is by calling them, and they always state they were just about to call...hmmm.

Update from Aug 3, 2017: After another full day of waiting for answers, the dealership finally called letting us know that the ABS Module was not going to be covered, and we were looking at a minimum of $1300 to fix it. What I do not understand is: why tell me my car falls under the warranty, and then refuse to do anything about it?? Called VW and they said they would look into it with the dealership, and get back to me, but not holding my breath.

- asamaral, Oakland, US

problem #6

Jul 172015

Rabbit 2.5L

  • Manual transmission
  • 84,107 miles

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

About 10 days after replacing my battery and alternator, as I round a curve my ABS traction control and Brake lights went off, as well as all the alarms.. I thought I didn't release the hand brake. Pull over and check and nope, the brake is down. Decide to shut down the car...nothing.

Take it to the shop and discover I need a whole new ABS system and the fix is $2100 for new. I pick up a second job to try to cover this cost and life being what it is I just haven't been able to afford this cost. The VW dealership service department says its drive-able I just need to be careful when it rains ( I live in WA state) and not to slam onto the brakes.

Flash forward to 2016 and I am absolutely elated to see that my car has a recall and yep it's for the ABS module and yes my car is eligible! I take it in and nope, not mine. In fact, they are only updating the computer system and can't since the abs module needs to be replaced. I see that this is a recurrent problem not only with VW but with Audi's as well. Why are they still using parts that breakdown and why won't they fix it!!

I have been a loyal VW driver for 10 years, but alas loyalty is meaningless in this day and age. I just want to warn others this will breakdown and you will not get assistance from VW. I have spoken to a rep and the VW corporation and we talked in circles offered no help at all.

- bilkovich, Everett, US

problem #5

Sep 012016

Rabbit S 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 139,000 miles

click to see larger images

ABS module stopped working

This is the single most absurdly irreparable mistake that Volkswagen has made. I have been dealing back and forth with Volkswagen of America for nearly a year to get this issue fixed. I was quoted $1.3k to fix the ABS Module issue in September 2016. Then a ridiculously absurd recall is issued, crafted by Volkswagen to clearly wash its hands, that does absolutely nothing to fix the problem. Now that a recall is out, I get quoted $2.3k to replace the module. Volkswagen is literally far out of its mind thinking that they will get away with this. Volkswagen has a reputation of cheating and lying to their customers and this is another example of just that. Volkswagen is meticulously keeping themselves away from being held accountable by issuing this bogus "software update." It wasn't until the NHTSA got on their case that Volkswagen decided to do something. They just keep digging themselves deeper and deeper.

- Joel G., Pasadena, US

problem #4

May 012016

Rabbit 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles

Same problem on many VW cars incl Golfs, Passats, others: multiple flashing dashboard warnings lights signal failure of ABS module, even at low mileage, huge cost to fix but VW not being responsible

- Paul H., Washington, DC, USA

problem #3

Mar 012016

Rabbit 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles

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

brake lihts repeatedly come on, ABS module and pump failure

See many 2009 GTI's with identical problem, VW should pay for it

- Paul H., Washington, DC, USA

problem #2

Aug 012015

Rabbit 2.5L

  • Manual transmission
  • 80,000 miles

This is the single most offensively overpriced, unforgivably coercive customer hostage taking piece of electronic garbage I have ever had the misfortune of encountering in a vehicle I've owned.

1) Most effective form of German psych torture I know of: literally every brake, steering, ESP & ABS relentless beeps when car stays in idle (i.e. - traffic).

2) When this device malfunctions, it is somehow able to disrupt everything from the speedometer, gas gauge, oil pressure gauge, tachometer, engine power, stability control & power steering.... How the -- do any of these other systems have the ability to be shut down &/or driven haywire by a **ing abs module that controls the hydraulic pressure to brake pads??????????????

3) This part is installed IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BRAKE SYSTEM, WHICH REQUIRES A COMPLETE BRAKE SYSTEM BLEEDING TO REPLACE. (There are things called wires, that enable virtually every other sensor/control module to be located somewhere beside like bolted to the freakin ABS pump!!!!

4) THIS UNIT CAN BE REPLACED BY VW DEALERS, BECAUSE REPLACEMENT MODULE HAS TO BE RECODED INTO YOUR CAR'S COMPUTER TO ACTUALLY FUNCTION

5) Last & worst: My local VW dealer quoted me $2800 to replace the ABS module in my 2009 Rabbit (with an "updated" Part #, I might add). At this point, that is literally 1/3 the value of my car!! (Or at least, 1/3 the value of one with a functioning ABS control module).

- David L., Pasadena, CA, USA

problem #1

Jul 052015

Rabbit 2.5L V5

  • Automatic transmission
  • 63,000 miles

The ABS control module has failed and set my electronics into a tailspin. The car will occasionally get stuck in gear until I shut it down. The fix is going to cost $1500 roughly and the dealer isn't sure if this will ultimately fix the problem. He's guessing its an ABS failure.

- Chris A., Austin, TX, USA

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