2023 Volkswagen Taos Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Electrical and powertrain issues are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones | Reviewer: Sergei Lemberg

The 2023 Volkswagen Taos is the German automaker’s compact crossover SUV. It arrived for the first time in North America in 2021, even though it had been in other countries since 2018. It’s slightly smaller than the Tiguan and named after the New Mexico town that John Muir (an author who wrote manuals on Volkswagen models) lived in.

There have been nearly 100,000 models sold in 2021 and 2022, so the Taos should break that milestone with the 2023 SUVs.

Click on other model year to view more problems: 2022

Most Common Problems with the 2023 VW Taos

The 2023 Volkswagen Taos has great looks and appears to be a real winner, especially as a first new car. Yet, owners can’t seem to stop complaining about the faulty electrical system, malfunctioning powertrain and defective service brakes.

2023 Volkswagen Taos Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Service Brakes
Power Train
Electrical System
Forward Collision Avoidance: Adaptive Cruise Control
Fuel/propulsion System
Unknown Or Other
Vehicle Speed Control
Back Over Prevention: Rearview System Braking
Lane Departure: Assist

Problems with the Electrical System

  • Dashboard warning lights: While heading down the highway, numerous owners have complained about random warning lights coming on. Sometimes it’s the ACC light, Check Engine Light, Lane Assist warning or battery alert, but there rarely seems to be an actual problem associated with the warning. One dealership told a customer that it was due to bad fuel, so the system was drained and refilled, only to have it occur again.
  • Lack of required features: Customers have discovered that the features they were supposed to have with the Taos are missing. For example, one driver noticed that the SUV didn’t include Rear Cross Traffic Warning and Blind Spot Warning, as is listed with the VIN. The vehicle still includes Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Departure Warning, which are supposed to use the other systems to function correctly.
  • Unintended acceleration: While pulling into parking spots, the Taos can accelerate on its own, causing an accident. For one driver, the SUV went over a parking curb and hit a small tree as a result of this defect.
  • Engine warnings: SUV goes into limp mode because of engine malfunctions. Warnings have come on the dashboard within the first day of driving, saying that the car reached its maximum 3000 RPMs, the engine was overheating or there was potential damage to the engine. At the same time, owners can’t get the vehicle to accelerate or shift because of limp mode. Yet, dealerships are blowing off the problem by blaming it on low voltage.
  • Automatic heat: When owners roll the windows down in the Taos, the heat can turn itself on. It doesn’t matter what temperature it is outside, the same malfunction occurs. Additionally, owners are having trouble with the power windows, with them wanting to do the opposite of what the switch is designed for. Not only that but once the temperature reaches 40 degrees Fahrenheit outside, there’s a chime alert that’s driving owners crazy.

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Powertrain Problems

  • Malfunctioning Reverse: Drivers have trouble getting the Taos into Reverse at times. Even when the gear shifter is in Reverse, the SUV doesn’t always move backward. To get Reverse working again, drivers have had to restart the SUV several times, which can be a problem when attempting to park in a busy area.
  • Stalling: The engine can stall while the gear shifter is in Drive. One owner stated that the vehicle was in Drive and the brake pedal was released when the vehicle rolled forward and stalled while entering a garage. Once it stalled, it was impossible to start the SUV once again. One owner found that the key fob could be held close to the button and the vehicle started back up, but this problem occurred with less than 8,000 miles on the odometer.
  • Locked in 1st gear: With just 350 miles on the odometer, another driver found the Taos locked in first gear. This became a dangerous situation because they were driving on a highway with nowhere to pull over. Without the ability to accelerate, an accident could have occurred. What’s worse is that the dealership told them there was nothing wrong with the vehicle.

Brake Issues

  • Locked brakes: Brakes are supposed to grip tightly and stop the vehicle before an accident occurs, but with the Taos, some people find that the brakes actually lock up. For one driver, this problem caused the vehicle to skid off the road, which is better than the accident that could have occurred but still scary.
  • Recalled brakes: Several people have discussed a recall on the brakes. For one owner, the time spent at the dealership for service has been nearly six weeks between the brakes, a radiator leak and head gasket repair. Most of this time was spent waiting for parts to arrive for the repairs, leaving the college-aged driver without a vehicle.

What To Do If Your 2023 Taos is a Lemon

Suspecting you’ve got a lemon on your hands? Relax and let our experts handle your lemon case without any expense on your part. The legal framework mandates that VW covers the legal fees. There’s a possibility you could bid farewell to your lemon troubles. Each year, numerous auto manufacturers execute buybacks, replacements, or provide cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like yourself.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones

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