really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
21,330 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 Tiguan engine problems

engine problem

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2009 Volkswagen Tiguan Owner Comments

problem #6

Nov 042014


  • 49,880 miles


I was driving on rolling road (North) toward old keen mill road in springfield, Virginia around 4:05 pm on November 4, 2014 (Tuesday). I saw the smoke coming out near the hood in the front while waiting for traffic light, so I pulled over to the parking lot near a gas station. I saw people waved to me, and yelled at me to stop, I got off my car and they told me my car was on fire at the bottom, we bend down and looked the bottom of the vehicle, and saw the fire burning on the material hanging down. Fortunately, a driver ran over carrying a fire extinguisher from his car, and a person from the gas station also brought another fire extinguisher, they spread the fire extinguisher to put out the fire. I could not wait for the tow truck, so I carefully drove the car to the VW dealership in fairfax, Virginia. The mechanic lifted up the car and took down the burned lower engine cover, and figured that it was because many dried leaves stuck near the engine and the high heat near the engine causing the leaves to fire up and burn the lower engine cover. I've saved this lower engine cover in my trunk, and have reported this safety incident to the VW customer service. The case was documented and a case # [xxx] was assigned. I report this incident to NHTSA for the safety concern because this non-fire-resistant material can cause the life of the drivers and passengers. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Herndon, VA, USA

problem #5

Mar 312012

Tiguan 4-cyl

  • miles
I went to take my child to gymnastics in the morning. When I turned on to the street that the gym is off of, my check engine light came on. Less then 10th of a mile later I parked. We were early so I called the local VW dealer to schedule an appointment to have this checked out and get in a little early for my scheduled maintenance. We then got out of the car and entered the gym. Within 10 minutes of being inside the gym, a man came in the building and started asking who's SUV was outside because it smoking. I ran out side to see my vehicle engulfed in flames. The fire department had to come to put out the fire. Its completely destroyed.

- Fort Wayen, IN, USA

problem #4

Oct 102011

Tiguan 4-cyl

  • 24,000 miles
I own a 2009 VW Tiguan. The car burst into flames this morning after the check engine light went on while my pregnant wife was driving the car this morning. The car has been maintained by VW and had roughly 22,000 miles on it. I bought the car from evanston autobarn VW in 2010 and serviced it at fletcher jones VW of Chicago. I filed an insurance claim this morning and contacted both VW dealerships and your 24 hour help line. VW has been zero help to us. Everyone said to call my insurance company. This is not an insurance issue. There was no collision. This car simply burst into flames while being driven. Chicago police department and fire department was involved and the report # is HT535806.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #3

Jan 102011

Tiguan 4-cyl

  • 36,100 miles


I am the owner of a 2009 VW Tiguan. On several occasions as I am coasting downhill the car begins to accelerates even though I am continuously pressing the brakes. As I am, pressing the brake that car begins to idle up instead of down and the engine grinds.

- Akron, OH, USA

problem #2

Jul 302009


  • miles
I have a 2009 Tiguan I bought in April 2009. I also first noticed a really bad smell coming out of the vents during the summer months when it's very humid. I didn't take it until the fall of 2009 to the dealer for an unrelated matter. They fixed the problem by performing a filter change and apparently sanitizing the chamber. It seemed to have solved the problem. It's been warm this summer in the northeast and I've had the A/C on most of the time since June. I've noticed the smell returning slightly, though not as bad as last year. I guess I'll have to wait and see if the problem develops full blown when I will need to return it for another sanitizing treatment.

- Flushing, NY, USA

problem #1

Feb 192010


  • 18,000 miles
My mother has a 2009 Volkswagen Tiguan and the car burns an excessive amounts of oil every 5,000 miles. VW requires the car to be serviced for an oil change by 10,000 miles but at the 8000 mile mark my mom's VW Tiguan had lost almost 2 1/2 quarts of oil. For a new car this is way too much oil to be burned. This is unsafe to the environment, and for a brand new car I have a feeling these cars will not last long. I had to fill my moms car with one quart of oil after the dip stick was showing no oil at all after 8,000 miles and the dip stick barely started showing some oil on low. If I were to leave it for the rest 2,000 miles like Volkswagen dealers recommend my motor would seize up.

- Medford, MA, USA

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