2003 Volkswagen Passat
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened an investigation into Volkswagen Passat sedans and wagons built between 2001 and 2007. According to NHTSA, a total of 35 complaints have been filed regarding ignition coils that have malfunctioned, 14 of which resulted in an underhood fire.

If this sounds familiar, that's because this is the second such investigation opened by NHTSA. The first centered around models built only in 2002 and 2003; this second investigation has been opened and expanded to include all model-year 2001-2007 Passats due to additional customer complaints.

Details on the investigation from NHTSA can be found in the report after the break.

[Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration]
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NHTSA Action Number : EA11002 NHTSA Recall Campaign Number : N/A

Vehicle Make / Model: Model Year(s):

VOLKSWAGEN / PASSAT 2001-2007
VOLKSWAGEN / PASSAT WAGON 2006-2007

Manufacturer : VOLKSWAGEN OF AMERICA, INC

Component(s) :
ELECTRICAL SYSTEM
ENGINE AND ENGINE COOLING

Date Investigation Opened : January 26, 2011
Date Investigation Closed : Open

Summary:
ODI has received 14 complaints alleging that a fire started in the engine compartment of the vehicle that may be related to ignition coil failure, and 21 complaints of ignition coil failure that did not result in a fire. Reports state that the vehicle hesitated or lost power, and the check engine or dashboard lights illuminated. The vehicles were repaired by replacing the faulty ignition coil(s). Some of the complaints indicated that the ignition coils were replaced more than once. The scope of PE10-027 focused on Model Years (MY) 2002-2003 Passat vehicles and Volkswagen provided data regarding their analysis of the vehicle fires and faulty ignition coils for these vehicles. However, based on consumer complaints, ODI also requested and received data from Volkswagen regarding MY2006-2007 Passat vehicles. The failure report for this Engineering Analysis contains data for MY 2002-2003 and MY 2006-2007 vehicles. ODI needs to further investigate this issue. To facilitate the acquisition and analysis of additional information, this investigation has been upgraded to an Engineering Analysis. ODI is expanding the scope to include MY 2001-2007 Passat vehicles.