The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened a preliminary investigation into whether diesel Volkswagen Jetta vehicles should be recalled because of complaints about engine stalling. The agency is looking into 37,889 2009 Volkswagen Jetta TDI models after getting seven complaints on that model and year "alleging that while driving and without warning the engine limped and then stalled almost immediately."
VW spokesman Kerry Christopher said the company is reviewing the complaints.
"Volkswagen takes these investigations very seriously and intends to fully cooperate with NHTSA's investigation," he said.
On a fan website -- www.tdiclub.com -- a few owners of diesel Jettas have complained in recent months that their vehicles stopped running without warning.
The site said that after their cars were towed, some were told "the entire fuel system is full of metal flakes and all fuel delivery components must be replaced" and reported the repair costs are between $6,900 and about $10,000.
One cause could be contaminated diesel or a bad fuel pump, owners suggested.
NHTSA is taking a much more aggressive stance, opening investigations into auto safety issues after far fewer complaints than it normally has in recent years.