The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating certain Volkswagen Tiguan models after receiving more than two dozen reports of vehicles experiencing a loss of exterior lighting – brake lights, headlights, turn signals, etc. So far, 26 people have reported this problem to NHTSA, but it could possibly affect an estimated 61,000 Tiguans between the 2009 and 2011 model years.

Of the Tiguan models that had a partial or complete loss of exterior lighting, some were found to have an overheated or melted fuse. The NHTSA investigation notice, which is posted below, doesn't mention whether or not the driver was warned when the lights failed, but it would probably be a good idea for potentially affected Tiguan owners to keep an eye on the lights and even the fuse until the investigation is concluded. Fortunately, there have been no accidents or injuries reported.
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INVESTIGATION Subject : Loss of Exterior Lights

Date Investigation Opened: NOV 04, 2013
Date Investigation Closed: Open
NHTSA Action Number: PE13036
Component(s): ELECTRICAL SYSTEM , EXTERIOR LIGHTING

Vehicle Make Model Model Year(s)
VOLKSWAGEN TIGUAN 2009-2011

Manufacturer: Volkswagen of America, Inc.

SUMMARY:
ODI has received 26 complaints alleging a partial or complete loss of the vehicle's exterior lights. The reports suggest the problem worsens over time with additional exterior lighting malfunctioning as the problem progresses. Most of the complaints report finding an overheated and melted fuse in the under-hood fuse box. The overheated 30-amp fuse (number F16 or SB16) protects, among other things, several exterior lighting circuits. ODI has opened this Preliminary Evaluation to evaluate the scope, frequency and consequence of the alleged defect.


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  • 19 Comments
      thomas.leopard
      • 1 Year Ago
      At first I thought it said "lightning".
      brux2dc
      • 1 Year Ago
      I have owned an 06 Jetta and now a 13 CC. Learned a lot about VW when I got my VCDS from Ross-tech (plug not intended). Helped solve many an issue with the Jetta, which I bought used. Would never have considered buying a new VW except now I own the diagnostic tool, and many specialized VW/Audi tools (triple square anyone!). I really like the design and feel of the CC R-Line. Yeah better bang for buck out there, but show me a car with a stick shift with the level of content that the CC has. And yes, I know, less content than 5-10 years ago, but what can I do about that. Want a stick shift...choose from these 10 models, 8 of them base level POS cars. Damn you Mazda for not having the new 6 grand touring with a manual trans!!
      Sergio526
      • 1 Year Ago
      A Volkswagen having electrical issues? You don't say!
      mark
      • 1 Year Ago
      VW has a reputation for electrical issues across the board so, this should be interesting. I see Recall in there future..
      Jeff Gilleran
      • 1 Year Ago
      I have no idea where VW is sourcing its electrical, but they need to dump the vendors. This electrical nightmare has been going on for decades. I've never seen an automaker with such poor Electrical, aside from maybe MG back in the 60s and 70s. Having owned VW and know others that have them they all complain equally. "whats up with VW's electrical?" LOL
        mark
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Jeff Gilleran
        No kidding! I owned several VW's in the past, they all had electrical issues. Never buying VW again. The next time you're out and about, count the number of VW's on the road with one headlight out.
          telm12345
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mark
          This was the argument my ex used when I wanted to get a GTI and to "call a spade a spade" she was right. I still look forward to owning one soon, but I know its an issue. Actually, one of my good friends at work has a brother who works at an Audi/VW dealer and they have a daily betting pools on how many new cars will come in with electrical issues. (from what I understand, its a lot) Eh, if everyone was super practical, we'd never have Ferraris either I guess.
          The Friendly Grizzly
          @mark
          I don't know about that, but, when I lived in Portland Oregon, one thing stood out. Every fall, on the first REALLY cold day, the most-often seen cars in the breakdown lane were VWs and Audis.
          BG
          • 1 Year Ago
          @mark
          2009 GTI manual trans model: so far, flawless. The electrics have been fine to date.
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
      ocnblu
      • 1 Year Ago
      Having owned 5 new VWs over the years, among many other vehicles (mostly GM), all of them (VW) have had issues except (so far, so good) my current vehicle, a '13 Beetle TDI. I will turn over 12k miles tomorrow morning on the way to work, and no warranty issues at all so far, which is a better record than all of my previous VWs. I hope I haven't jinxed myself...
      Ahjai79
      • 1 Year Ago
      How do I file a report? The same thing happened to my 2010 Tiguan last night! Frustrating!
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