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05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - timp
The ESP light has started lighting continuously since a few days ago on my 2005 Golf 1.6 FSI SE. The ESP Off switch is also illuminated and has no effect when pressed.

All other operation seems to be unaffected, all internal and external lights work, and I've checked all the fuses in both fuse boxes.

Has anyone got any ideas about what might be wrong or things I can try (or how much I'm likely to pay VW for fixing it)? The car's warranty expired just 1 week ago! :-(

Thanks in advance,

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 20/09/2008 at 13:24

Tags: technical issues esp abs electrical faults warranties

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Dynamic Dave
You'll need to get the fault code read out to assess what the problem is.

As the warranty only ran out 1 week ago, you could try contacting VW (or whoever the warranty was with) and see if they'll be sympathetic and honour you with a lighter repair bill. Some of that will depend on the mileage though.

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 20/09/2008 at 13:25

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - timp
Took the Golf into my Volkswagen dealer today and they had a look at it.

They very kindly did the diagnosis for free, but the fault description sounded familiar:

"Investigated for ESP light on. Carried out guide fault finding test. Found fault with brake press sender. Carried out test plan and confirmed ABS control/hydraulic unit faulty. Requires new un[it]. £1482.15 inc"

The dealer is going to contact the warranty administrator next week to see what they will offer (the car is just out of warranty).

I know the ABS works because I deliberately tested it last week to make sure, so presumably a small part of the ABS control unit (which contains the ESP electronics) has gone wrong.


Edited by Dynamic Dave on 20/09/2008 at 13:23

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - timp
VW called me on Monday and offered to pay 70% of the parts and labour cost, which I accepted. They have given me a 2-year warranty on the new unit. They replaced the unit today and things seem to be back to normal. The ESP light is now off (it comes on when the ESP switch is pressed as it should). I've not had an opportunity to test that the ABS or traction control works yet.

Interestingly, the ABS control/hydraulic unit looks like a completely different design from the old one - it looks like the one shown in the Haynes manual, where the electrical connector is at the rear of the unit - the original unit's connector was at the front.

ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - Fiat500
I've had the same experience on my Touran - 3 months out of warranty and just 43k miles. It cost £1550 to repair (yesterday) but VW and dealer paid 70%. Trying to get VW to contribute more, as durability (particularly for a safety-related issue) is a feature of the Sale of Goods Act 1979 (as amended 1994), and therefore something like an ABS pump should not fail so early in a vehicle's life.

There is a poll on clubtouran.net where almost 50 people have cited having this problem on their Tourans, and similar postings on vwaudiforum.co.uk so I'm writing to VW now to get their response. Will post an update in due course.

ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - William Stevenson
I now feel even more pleased with my much missed 150,000 mile 94 Astra Estate whose ABS system never missed a beat, and worked so well in the ice and snow that when I drove in icy conditions in a later Golf (no ABS, I later found out) I was surprised when I slithered into a hedge.
ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - KJB
Interestingly, my Mum and I both got a VW Mark 5 1.6 Golf in january of 2005, both 54 registration but mine was a manual and hers an automatic and as of 10 days ago both our ESP lights came on and both have been quoted well over £1000 to have it replaced. The ESP switch is what is at fault but it has been designed in such a way that the whole part it is attached to needs to be replaced. Interesting coincidence don't you think?
ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - jc2
The vehicle will still be safe to drive with both ABS/ESP disabled.
ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - MelanieE
How interesting to see these posts! My MK V 1.6 FSi 54 plate Golf with 37,000 miles has been in and out of my local dealers numerous times over the past 3 weeks and is still not right.

The first indication was a flashing on and off of the emissions light combined with misfiring. The dealer told me it was a coil and it was replaced. However although the light went off it was still misfiring. I took it back in and was told that the computer was not showing a fault but literally as I sat in the car to drive away the ESP light was on.

So back in it went and I was then told that a pad connected with the ABS unit was faulty and that the whole ABS control unit had to be replaced at a cost of £1500. After discussions with VW customer services, they agreed to pay 50% and the unit was replaced.

Even as I drove it away I could tell that it was still not right (why is it chaps that women who drive cars are treated in such a patronising way - I know when my car is not running right and I don't need a computer to tell me!!).

So back in it went again yesterday. After telling me the fault had "cleared" I insisted that they drive it, which they did and they then agreed there was a fault. BUT they can't say what it is and now want to take it in for a whole week to run a wiring check. The emissions light is now back on permanently and I wonder just how much of a ride I have been taken for. Oh and they also threw into the pot yesterday that the radiator is weeping!!

This is one Golf headed for the re-sale market once it is sorted. Grrrr.....

Edited by MelanieE on 30/06/2009 at 21:37

ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - tonytrouble
I have a Golf 1.6 FSH its an 05 reg with only 18k on the clock. Looks like I have just joined the ESP Light On Club.
Seems to me somethings not fit for the purpose. I will book it in with my local VW dealer and let you all know what they say.

If the dealer gets smart with me I will write off to Which and see what they can do about it. My local garage told me that one guy on the net claimed back 80% of the cost from the manufacturer.
ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - tonytrouble
I booked the car in to my local VW garage. They charge £88 to do a diagnostic check. I will be back.

tony trouble
ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - tonytrouble
Hi folks, Im Back with the results of my ESP problem. VW Shirley Solihull did the diagnostic check which showed up as the ABS pump fault. The check in fact cost me £48.
I heard nothing from them for three weeks so I chased them. They got back to me and said VW wanted to see the service book which I duly dropped into them. The car had only done 18K so it had one 12K long-life service and an 18K service I had just had carried out a my local garage. NOTE! If an independent garage services your car, they must use, in this case VW parts. otherwise you're not covered.
Anyway, VW aggreed to a 45% goodwill gesture on the pump replacement bringing the cost down to £925. I checked with the SMMT which is a free new car code of practice concilliation organisation (0870 7518270) and they told me to accept the offer due to the fact that the car was out of warranty.
I booked the car in and was told the price had dropped to £680. When I picked the car up yesterday the bill was £583 so I was quite pleased. They also left a very nice boxed bottle of Champers on the front seat.

Looking at the UK-MKIV MEMBERS forum which my local garage downloaded for me there's a list of owners complaining about the ESP fault. One bloke got a reduction of 80% so the final bill was £188.

If anyone hears of a recall please let me know on these pages. Good luck with your ESP faults!
ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - tonytrouble
Hi, Im back again. Had the golf diagnostic check and yeah, they say its the main pump unit and will get back to me to see if VW will pay towards the cost of replacing it. At about 1500 notes they better had! I cant wait to send a letter to Which? if their offer is unacceptable.
ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - ifithelps
...(why is it chaps that women who drive cars are treated in such a patronising way....


Garages treat us just the same way.

Now get on with the housework like you're supposed to. :)

ESP light/ABS pump failures on Tourans/Golf V - MelanieE
:-) :-)
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Hepzibah29
What are VW playing at with this ABS/ESP problem? I have just joined the club of ESP light on, the diagnostic revealing the ABS pump needs replacing at a cost of £1100 (plus labour). I am fed up of my 1.4 FSI bought only 1 year ago. First I had a power failure problem which required a new fuel pump, which also took 4 weeks to diagnose after several complete power failures on A roads and motorways, now this.
I'm selling this stupid car and regretting getting rid of my completly relaible 1997 VW Golf which I had for 11 years with only minor and easily resolvable problems.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - argybargy
Interesting to see the reputation of VW Golfs taking such a nose dive--the more sophisticated cars get, the less reliable, it seems. We had an X reg (1981?) Golf for a couple of years; canary yellow, dead simple to work on for a DIY mechanic and built like a tank--something I found out when my wife rammed a neighbours brick gate post, knocking the masonry backwards by several inches but leaving hardly a mark on the car. Improvements in technology dont necessarily take us to a better place, do they?
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - absgrrrr
New member for the club!

Golf FSI '06 - 2 days out of warranty!!!
31,000 miles.
ESP light on.
£1,500 to repair and dealer is going to contact customer services. Lookng at previous posts I'm not too hopeful though. It's looking a bit too common problem not to be a coincidence. I might print tout this page as evidence for VW before I contact the consumer champions.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Hamsafar
For anyone in the future who can't get any goodwill from VW, you can get refurb. units for £250-£400 from BBA Reman which I'm sure you will find with Google.

Edited by Hamsafar on 10/08/2009 at 14:08

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - stuartyr
Well the ESP light has just come on tonight in my 07 GTTDi 170, less that 7.5k on the clock.

I will be calling the dealer tomorrow and shall report back in due course.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - dubstar
My 06 Golf 1.9TDi Sport ESP light came on last week. 44000 miles and less than 2 months out of warranty. The diagnostic fault code was 01435- Sender 1 for Brake pressure. The ABS was still working on the car.
I agreed to pay for the diagnostic check at the local main dealer, who had carried out all the servicing on the car, but I insisted that VW were asked to help out.
The ABS control unit was diagnosed as faulty, and VW authorised free replacement under their warranty goodwill scheme.
The dealer had the part in stock, now supplied to VW by another manufacturer, and the whole process was completed the same day.

Stick to your guns, guys. VW know there is a problem with the original unit. I can't fault the way VW have dealt with my case however.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Nick09

I am now a member of the club as well, I have a 04 Touran with 48,000 miles on the clock.

I have checked the fuses and all looks okay, so it looks like I am facing an expensive
repair. Do you think there is any merit in buying the VAG COmmander USB cable and software to get the diagnostic code, I saw one advertised for £18.00.

Do you think VW will entertain a claim against a 5 year old car ? It's alot of money for something that's probably only worth £5000.00


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - bear man

Not convinced about the advisability of buying the software etc for this problem. Even after buying the kit there are often problems getting the software, PC and car to talk to one another. And then of course you are left with a code which you will need to understand to pursue the problem. Any decent auto electrician will read the codes for a tenner. You can then decide on the best course of action.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - deborah2
We have (I think the same issue) on our 2005 vw golf. The eps light is on and there is also a picture on the speedometer of the car skidding. We went to the showroom in switzerland were we live and they quoted us 2500 chf, (circa 1,500 gbp). They said that the hydraulic block for abs needs replacing. Is this the same issue?
Appreciate any feedback as we need to use against them
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - LenG
Is this the same issue?
Appreciate any feedback as we need to use against them

The short and sad answer is 'Yes' I'm afraid!

My vehicle, a Golf Mk V 1.6 FSI registered in the second half of 2006 wth just 8250 miles on the clock and VW maintained developed the dreaded ESP OFF syndrome the day before yesterday 17th August '09.

Replacement cost of ABS Unit circa £1500, fortunately I've a month left on the three year warranty so VW can pay (this time)!>> We have (I think the same issue) on our 2005 vw golf. The eps light
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - hels
Hi, I too have joined the ESP light up club. Golf 06 1.6FSI
I've been told today by VW Shrewsbury....shame it's out of warrenty (just) and it's probably the ABS and will cost £1000 plus labour. I've retreated to consider my options and consult whoever.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - hm
The ABS units are prone to failing on Audi and BMW.... your best bet is take her off and get BBA reman to re-condition it.. full warranty, they are currently offering it for £100... dirt cheap, I paid £240 last year on my BMW.. I have noticed my wife Audi has exactly the same ABS ECU controller, I'm betting the VW do to. bascially it dry's out due to poor design and heat build up.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - VWGolfOwner
Hi All,

just to let you know that my Golf 1.4 '55 reg has just been diagnosed with the same problem. I took it in to the dealership to get it diagnosed and they've quoted £1,500 to get it fixed!!

As the 3-year warranty ran out 8 months ago, the garage is going to see if they can get it sorted under VW's "goodwill" scheme. I told them about how many other people it would appear have had this same problem, and they said that it's a problem VW are aware of.

If they won't cover the costs I'll probably try and take it further - as it's a recognised problem (and if they're putting sub-standard parts in their cars) surely it's VW's duty to sort it out?? It's worth a try anyway. I'll find out more early next week, so will update then.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - robbiemul
Well what a surprise i got 2 day, took my 2005 1.6 FSI to VW because ESP Light on, came away from dealership in total shock at the cost of getting it fixed, nearly £1500 pounds still in shock and very angry that this control unit can fail on a vehicle that has only done 37000 miles. Just feel like disconnecting the wiring to the switch and just drive it!!
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - fedupdriver
Yet another member of the ESP light club as of Monday!!

Mark V 54 plate Golf with 27300 on the clock. Quoted £1900!!!! to get it sorted. I'm currently waiting for the VW garage to come back to me to tell me if VW will cough up the dough as part of their goodwill scheme, as car is approx a year out of warranty.

They said I have a good chance as car has low mileage and full service history.

When the Service Manager was asked if it was a regular occurance, and after much umming and ahhing, he admitted that yes, they are seeing more and more of them coming through.

Come on VW, get it sorted!!

Edited by fedupdriver on 21/08/2009 at 13:20

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - timp
Disconnecting the wiring to the switch won't help, since the electronics are in the ABS control unit. The dashboard itself is also a self-contained unit and so I don't think you can get at the warning light itself.

In my case, despite the ESP not working, the ABS did still work perfectly normally, so I wasn't uncomfortable with continuing to drive the car while I decided what to do. Though the bright orange light was a bit annoying.

If it's any help, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders can be contacted to aid in any dispute between the customer and the motor manufacturer. The link is here: www.smmt.co.uk/consumeraffairs/dsp_conaffairs.cfm?...6

I didn't involve the SMMT since I was reasonably happy with the goodwill offer from VW.

One thing I wish I'd done is take out the extended warranty after the 3-year warranty finished! Looking back at previous cars, it was always in the 4th year that things started to go wrong...
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - robbiemul
Hi guys, just spoke to VW Main Dealer who have offered a 40% discount overall so bill is down to £900 which is still a lot of money but they can't get the part as its "out of stock" due to high demand (thats odd don't you think). Thanks for all the help guys
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - VWGolfOwner
Hi All,

Back again with update.

The dealership contacted me today - the good news is that I'm getting this ESP problem fixed, free of charge. Car is 9 months out of warranty, but I think I'm getting it sorted under the "goodwill" scheme. I've bought my last two cars (previously had Polo) from the dealership and have had my Golf MOT'ed and serviced there too. So maybe that has helped...

Anyway, managed to save around £1,500 so pretty pleased with the outcome.

Good luck all you fellow ESP-sufferers!!!!!
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Doctor_Dibbo

Here we go again! Yet another one of the esp club. Mine is a 56 plate 140 TDI with 31,000 miles. ESP switch is illuminated as is the dash and has been for about two weeks.... Finally called VW this morning and should still be in warranty by a month. Fingers crossed and will let you know next week.

I wonder if VW should do a recall, because with the esp not working the car has no traction control, which caught me out on the day it happened.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE
I see a pattern (more generalised) emerging here.

VAG want to reduce costs and increase profits. Sophisticated components bought in from outside suppliers are profitable for their makers and expensive for VAG to buy. (Ford learned this; they make or have made many sophisticated components such as diesel fuel systems - with mixed sucess).

Bosch are a high quality supplier whose components attract a premium price. They don't hold an unblemished record in the reliability assessments (MAF sensors, anyone?) but their general record is very good. In view of the price of their components, Bosch parts would be a prime target for VAG to undertake "re-specification" from other suppliers.

My ('05) VAG vehicle has a Bosch ABS unit, but I understand some later vehicles are fitted with Teves/Continental units. Anyone care to check this if they have the "ESP" disease?

VAG did a similar thing earlier in the days of the PD diesels - they bought some tandem pumps from LuK - and got their fingers burnt resulting in a recall. Bosch pumps were unaffected.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - joshua
Hi all

Not a VW, but my Kia Pro Ceed has just developed the same problem with the ESP Off lit, comes and goes intermittantly.

Diagnostic on Thursday.

Hyundai i30 are starting to appear with the same problem.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - joshua

Just to keep you all updated.

Cars brain scanned and checked for faults. A couple of glitches showed up which could have thrown the light on ???
Glitches cleared and car seems ok.

Only 6 years left on the warranty !!


Edited by Dynamic Dave on 03/09/2009 at 18:49

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - fedupdriver

VW called me last week and said that they'd pay 40% of the cost (approx £900).

Not a great outcome, but better than nothing.

Wonder what they'd say if Watchdog got involved?
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE
Which means that you will pay for the entire "real" cost of the job as opposed to VAG's inflated quotation. VAG get off scott free financially - again.

It's time Milton Keynes were brought to book over this issue - they really are not nice people to do business with.

Who made your ABS controller?

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - timp
I'd suggest pushing for a bigger discount than that. Most people on this forum, and others, have been quoted £1400 to £1500 and a 70% to 80% discount, leaving around £400 to pay. I didn't have to push very hard for them to contribute. Your car is slightly older, but this shouldn't mean the repair quote is so much more in the first place.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - fedupdriver
Not sure what make it is. Car is going into the garage next week to be done.

Had another call from the garage to say that the part that they had been sent for my car was actually cheaper, and that I only have to pay approx £600 instead of £900.

Sounds a bit fishy.....
Golf 55 plate ESP light on (and Airbag...) - dragon-it
Thanks for all of you posting on this forum, hadn't needed to check until it happened to us of course but great to know how many people are effected.

Had a right job with this one. Took the car in for it's MOT and asked them to look at what was causing the skids (ESP) light to be on and reset it .... turned up for the car and (after pressing) the uninterested peson on Service said that's about £1800 and the airbag needs the wiring fixing which is 1/2 an hour's labour. When I spoke with someone there who knew anything about cars he admitted it was quite a common fault.

They said it might be worth talking with VW Customer services and gave me the 0800 711 811 number. I spoke to them and said I might be able to get 50% since it was a 55 plate but a 06 plate would be upto 100% but that either way the garage needed to send in the diag reports (why didn't they do this for me and contact VW too eh?!)

The garage did the diags and found the pressure sensor in the EPS unit at fault then came back and told us the cost of the part had come down and with the 50% from VW it would be approx. £600..... After a couple of weeks of waiting for them to take it up with VW I went in and found they done no better out of VW (if they bothered at all). They informed me that it couldn't be a general problem anyway as there are millions of Golfs sold and they don't all have it!!!

Phoned a different VW garage and took it in there for the 4 year service (its only done 15k miles in 4 years!) and they were amazed the garage hadn't chased it up with VW - they wer also aware of it being a common fault. Spoke with VW myself and currently waiting for the case to be checked over and assessed for early next week

We bought the car from the inaptly named TRUST Volkswagen Stourbridge and took it back into the same building, same signs, same people, same desks, same cars but now it is alled Stourbridge Volkswage, owned by TrustGroupUK and are claiming "No their problem" as we didn't buy the car from them. Apparently used to be Reg Vardy which has been bought out by someone else.

Was ready to replace my 03 plate Renault Laguna with something a bit larger but not heading to that VW dealer at least, until I find out

Gold 55 Plate, "06" model from the 6 in the chassis number, 15k miles, 4 years old.
Golf 55 plate ESP light on (and Airbag...) - nelson77
Hi all,

I've got a big problem with my Golf V (Year 2005 - Czech republic). My ESP doesn't work, the led is OFF and there is the led on in the dashboard. It seems to be ESP sensor, and my mechanic told me that it is probably situated on the ABS switchboard (can someone confirm this?), but I haven't got money to substitute it (...more than 1000 ?!).
Is there a way to turn off the led on the dashboard without repairing the ESP?

Thank you very much

Golf 55 plate ESP light on (and Airbag...) - petal
I cant believe what I am reading!!
I brought an 06 golf from a second hand dealer in June & last thursday the ESP Light came on so I did a search on internet & this forum came up.I cant believe how many people are having problems with this but im also stunned by how much its going to cost to fix it!
Im going to ring the customer service number when i finish work & see if I too can get any help with the cost of it.
I will keep you posted on how it turns out.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - fedupdriver
So, have now had my car fixed, however got a phone call from the garage late on the afternoon I was due to collect my car to say that they'd been preparing the invoice and VW had actually rejected the claim as it's was outside 28 days!!! I explained in no uncertain terms to the chap at the garage that I had never been told that I had to have it fixed within a set period, and he admitted it had been his fault. I told him that I wasn't prepared to pay for the additional amount and to sort it out!
A further phonecall confirmed that I didn't have to pay the extra amount, as the garage would sort it out with VW themselves. Interestingly the guy I'd been dealing with wasn't there when I went to collect the car.
Not sure how it could have been outside 28 days, as they called me 3 weeks from the date I took my car in originally to say VW would pay and the car went in 3 weeks after that - which part of this is outside of 28 days? Would be interesting to know from what date they start their 28 days from!!!
Have also written to Watchdog about this, but doubt anything will come of it!
54 2.0SDi ESP warning light on continuously. - Gibby
I seemingly need a new ABS unit. Volkswagen offered me 35% on a bill for £1300. I knocked it back as it was a safety issue and referred them to the Sale of Goods Act. They told me I had until the Tuesday to accept. I contacted my garage and they told me they had refused to put anything to my bill as it was a Volkswagen problem. They then offered me 5% and Volkswagen agreed to match it leaving me 55% off my original bill to pay. My car has only done 41,500miles. During my discussion with Volkswagen customer services I was told that if my car had been over 5 years old they would have offered me nothing. I have just had a service costing me £450 which was completed 2 weeks ago. I am waiting for the ABS unit to be delivered from abroad as there is a shortage of them, when my Engine management light went on. Could there be any connection between the two lights? I know my brakes are working. I enjoy driving my Volkswagen, however I am beginning to think that this car is too costly to keep.
54 2.0SDi ESP warning light on continuously. - 659FBE
The cars are generally OK but suffer from the odd design fault (although there have been rather too many recently, associated with bean counting - these ABS units are probably a victim of this).

The problem I have found with VAG is in their UK representation at MK. My feelings, after a less "costly" exchange with them was that they seemed to regard customers as a form of revenue raising dirt.

They will need to realise that customer information interchange via the Internet has changed the game and they can't keep people in the dark and throw things at them. I think Toyota are a more honourable organisation to do business with.

54 2.0SDi ESP warning light on continuously. - DP
I think Toyota are a more honourable organisation to do business with.

Can't say I have any recent experience, but certainly in 2003 they were as bad as this, if not worse if my friend's experience with his Celica was anything to go by. On top of launching a car that clearly hadn't been developed properly, they argued and haggled over every single warranty claim.

The finance company had to step in in the end, it got that bad. He handed the car back mid-term and walked away.

54 2.0SDi ESP warning light on continuously. - cliffy
This ESP light problem has just developed on my wife's 2005 Golf with 31,000 miles. How have you got on with VW. Think Watchdog should be contacted as this is obviously a major fault - and in the breaking system. Advice please, what is the best form of action.
54 2.0SDi ESP warning light on continuously. - bikemade3
Mine failed today.....06 reg Golf 1.9, VW FSH, 45K.

Goes into VW dealer next Weds to diagnose and see what happens with VW HQ
54 2.0SDi ESP warning light on continuously. - cliffy
Had my wife's Golf diagnosed yesterday, and yes it is the typical problem associated with the ASB side of the braking system. The vw agents have promised to contact VW, so will see what happens. Does anybody really understand what the actual fault is within the unit to make the ESP fail.
Any forum members who have been lucky/unlucky with VW ... it would be interesting to know how they are deciding claims.
54 2.0SDi ESP warning light on continuously. - bikemade3

Car has been fixed with 100% goodwill gesture by VW no arguing or quibbling over liability.
Car went in today, placed on VAGCOM and faulty control unit replaced in the same today. Cost to me £11.50 for a courtesy car. LJ Irvine ,VW Bridgwater cannot be praised high enough.....well done

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 04/11/2009 at 18:59

05 1.9 TDI ESP warning light on continuously - andypollard
Hi All, just joined.

ESP light came on today (2005), checked the fuses appear to be ok, now the ABS light is on.

No way i'll be paying over £1000 to fix this! Time to email my local dealer and see what they say, had the car from new with a full main dealer history.

05 1.9 TDI ESP warning light on continuously - andypollard

if anyone is interested I've created a Facebook group about this problem, search for "VW Golf ESP Failure", I've put a link to this forum, feel free to add comments, links etc... I'm the only group member at the moment. Got my car checked at VW today, fault G201, and £1009.74 to fix, waiting for VW customer services to get back to me.

cheers Andy
05 1.9 TDI ESP warning light on continuously - Paul_
This same problem exists for many similar age VAG cars, Seats (Leon, Toledo), Skodas (Octavia), VW (Golf, Golf Plus, Touran) and Audi (A2 and A3). My Audi A3 has recently developed the fault - £1450 quoted to fix. Three and a half year old car with little over 20k on the clock. No help from VAG. A few weeks ago the parts were out of stock, now there are thousands in stock across all the variants.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - James W
Thank you for this post. Had the same issue on my 2006 1.9 TDI - 4 months after end of warranty.

Quoted £1000.60 for the fix and about £60 for the diagnostic. Got 100% goodwill from VW (diagnostic included). When the price was quoted - they didn't mention anything about goodwill. I informed them that I knew this was a common problem - which is when they said they knew and would speak to VW on my behalf.

Dealer was surprised I got the full 100% - apparently the week before someone was given just 70%. The official reason given for the 100% cover was that I had a full service history and had used the VW garage to service my car each year.

Earlier in the week I had contacted VW customer services directly after reading this thread. I was asked whether I was a long-time VW user (eg had I owned other VW cars). I told them honestly that this was my first car, I had bought VW because of their reputation for reliability and I had no other problems with the vehicle. I also told them that I would buy VW again. Not sure whether any of this helped and not sure if the case I opened was linked with the conversations the dealer had on my behalf.

Good luck to anyone with this issue. Reading this notice board was a great help and gave confidence that VW would contribute something. The annoying thing is that this is clearly a recall issue - and the payout shouldn't be linked to long-term loyalty to VW or for paying inflated service costs for the last 3 years.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - andypollard
Right just got a call from VW, they are willing to give a goodwill of 50%, made up of 40% VW and 10% dealer, so still just over £500... don't know whether to accept this or push for more?
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - DP
Push for more.

Modules of this type should last the life of the car. Nothing you have done as an owner can affect the life of these modules (they are maintenance free). You shouldn't have to contribute anything, and it's not hard to work out how common this is. It's an inherent fault with the car.

I would be prepared to go to court over it as a matter of principle. Bet it doesn't get that far though.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - progambler
I am yet another one in the ESP club

2006 2.0 TDI with not a lot on the clock.

I have it in right now for assessment in my local dealer Isaac Agnew in Belfast.

Will see what they come back with.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - VWGolf83
I've just joined the club today! I'm not paying for something that shouldn't need replacing halfway through the life of a car when it should last the life of the car. Just sent something into Watchdog about it so please please start Emailing them - if we get enough people then surely something will be done!!! www.bbc.co.uk/watchdog

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Honestjohn

I got a written undertaking from VW that it would meet the full cost of replacing these Teves Mk 60 ABS/ESP modules on Tourans with full VAG service history. But it seems that Germany stepped in (I've got the e-mails) and while VW UK is keeping to its word about Tourans it is not replacing the modules completely FOC on Golfs, Golf +, Leons, Alteas, Toledos and Octavias. Audi is usually better about this sort of thing. The problem also seems to affect BMW 1 Series, BMW 3 Series, Volvo S40/V50s and Mazda 3s. The failure is a sensor deep inside the unit and it cannot simply be replaced. The failure only knocks out the ESP, not the ABS. VOSA had refused to issue a vehicle safety recall (I've got a copy of that e-mail). And, of course, it's more than a bit of a problem for the manufacturer to suddenly supply tens of thousands of replacement units when they are only set up to supply for just in time production.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - VWGolf83
Hi John

Is it possible you can forward me some of these messages? It would be good to have a copy of them. My Address is robfrain@hotmail.com

Can i quickly ask (being a newbie - what is VAG?)

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Dynamic Dave
what is VAG?

Volkswagen Audi Group
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Honestjohn
From VOSA:

?Dear Sir,
Thank you for your email. This has been passed to me for reply. Our role is to look at design and construction defects that fail with no warning and are likely to cause death or serious injury. Such incidents should be dealt with by the issue of a Safety Recall. The ABS unit failure is highlighted to the driver by the vehicle displaying a warning light on the dashboard. This warns the driver that there is an issue and allows them to stop the vehicle safely and have the work attended to. Therefore, this is not something that VOSA would look at under its responsibilities.?

Automotive Safety Recalls Manager
Vehicle Safety Branch, VOSA.

From VW:

?We are aware of some issues affecting certain models within the Volkswagen passenger car range with the ABS control module. Reported instances with the Touran model where we suspect an ABS module failure and the vehicle has service history within the Volkswagen Retailer Network, customers will receive a 100 per cent contribution towards the cost of the repairs. In addition, regardless of the vehicle's history, all cases will be dealt with in a sympathetic manner. We have been in communication with VOSA on this issue and we agree with their view that this is not a safety issue. Drivers are warned of an issue with a clear warning light and are advised to take their vehicle to their local retailer. In all instances the ESP may not function when the warning light illuminates however the ABS function remains operational and the fundamental safety of the vehicle is unaffected.?


Edited by Honestjohn on 02/12/2009 at 12:25

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE
When the cause of this expensive problem is a design defect in a component which VAG have specified (Teves ABS/ESP unit) it is immoral for VAG to make dealer servicing a condition of free replacement.

There is nothing associated with servicing (not even brake fluid replacement, as the failure is not in the valve block) or owner usage which affects the life of this component.

Dishonest trading, VAG.


Edited by 659FBE on 02/12/2009 at 13:32

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Honestjohn
I disagree with 659FBE here. Internal valving of ABS modules have always been affected by moisture in brake fluid (the stuff is hygroscopic and actually absorbs moisture from the atmosphere). If the car has been service by Tom, Dick or Harry, who is to say that the fluid has been checked for moisture content at services? VAG has now changed the requirement from new fluid at 2 years to a moisture check at 2 years and only change if necessary. Ortherwise change at 3 years.


Edited by Honestjohn on 02/12/2009 at 14:36

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE
But, as I said in the previous post, there are no problems with the valve block in the Teves unit. The problem is with the electronics - I have one in bits here on my desk.

I rest my case - VAG dishonest.


Edited by 659FBE on 02/12/2009 at 15:02

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - PatH
I have an year 2003 Golf 1.6.

I am very interested to read the discussion on this topic.

I now have the following lights showing, all started to come on around the same time, appx a month ago: The ESP light, the Emission warning light and the break pad warning lamp. The ESP button worked intermittently. The temp gauge now does not move from zero (it used to sit in the middle) and the fan comes on sometimes when before it rarely needed to. Now the alarm keeps going off and a warning light saying a door/boot is open when none are - this may be unconnected and damp getting into the boot? I have had no other problems with the Golf but strangely all these have started at the same time.

I have a good service history with VW, although my latest VW dealership I find less trustworthy.

I would really value advice please. Should I go straight to VW HQ and if so, how/where, or should I have this checked out first at the dealership (incurring a heavy VW bill)?
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE
A car of this age ('03) could have lots of problems. It is unlikely to have the Teves ABS unit and should have the thick film Bosch unit which, by then, was reliable. Have a look.

Find a competent auto electrician and suggest he looks at a few earthing points - especially the ones for the instruments.

Further to my post above, the hydraulic fluid change is of course a VAG smokescreen.

If there were any valve block problems, the ABS wouldn't work either and VOSA would be involved. As it is, they're just being feeble.


I can provide a photograph of the internals of the Teves unit, but not for general consumption as it's the subject of a dispute. HJ, if you're interested I'll mail it to you - but there's not a lot to see without a microscope. Under magnification, it's not a pretty sight.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - WorkshopTech
We have been seeing a lot of these faulty units. The Teves unit is fitted to a raft of cars and they all seem to suffer from failure of an internal pressure sensor (G201). Whether this is exposed to fluid or not, I dont know, but if it is then moisture could theoretically be to blame. I always recommend a change of fluid every two years anyway.
VAG have cut the price of some of these, we just had a 1K0 614 517 from TPS and it was about £680 rather than the previous £1000. There were massive back orders on these (hundreds) but they seem to be available now. All VAG cars, plus BMW and Mazda are being affected.
The fault only affects ESP, so its not a matter for VOSA. You can pass an MoT with the ESP not working. In fact it doesnt even afffect insurance because the ESP can be switched off anyway and presumably your insurance covers that.

I know that BBA-Reman are trying to get on top of this problem and produce a recon unit, but as of yet they can't help. Maybe in a couple of months I am told.

Regards the '03 Golf, I agree with 659 that its not this fault. I tend to look for power supply problems (battery, connections, earth, alternator o/p etc/) when confront with this sort of situation.

It would be interesting if an owner took VAG to Small Claims Court on the basis that this component is not sufficiently durable. This is a major component which is obviously failing due to either a design or quality control problem. I wonder what is happening in the US?
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - WorkshopTech
Incidentally, although these have been failing in vast number recently, VAG (and probably all the other manufacturers involved) have known about the problem for several years. We first heard about failures in 2006, I think this part was fitted from about 2004-on.
You can swap out the unit yourself, but you'd need access to a diagnostic tool like VCDS. Note down the coding of the old unit before you remove it and write it to the new unit after fitting. Then do your bleeding a adaption.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - vwgolf83
Just been told that vw will not pay a thing towards the part! The reason being on my last service I didn't take it to a vw garage! Only reason we did that was due to the £600 bill the last service we had! Where do I go from here? Email has been sent to watchdog!
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - WorkshopTech
If it was me I think I would take a shot at a Small Claims Court action. I dont know how much it costs these days (£70 ??) but might be money well spent. Just gather together all written evidence you have, plus internet discussion threads, and complete a claim form for the £1500 or whatever. I would claim on the basis of sale of goods act (not sufficiently durable). I think that by offering some customers 100% refund VAG are implicitly accepting that they are responsible. Since the item is non-servicable then where the car was serviced is immaterial.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - vwgolf83
Its very very tempting. Give it a week of fighting with Volkswagen first. I just need a hand off someone in the know. VW wants me to prove that the parts used in another garage i used are the genuine VW part. Can someone please tell me what needs doing on a 60k service for an 05 1.4 mk5 golf - and if anyone really is in the know the parts they are meant to use!
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Honestjohn
Further development. Last night the man from VW told me they were treating Golfs the same as Tourans. If fully VW serviced and not too old they are replacing the ABS/ESP modules FOC; otherwise its an age and service related Goodwill contribution.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Reg Vardy
Golf v 2006, 32,000 miles on clock bought in June 2006

My Esp light came on middle of November I took it to alocal garage as thought it would be an electrical fault & would be fixed in 10 mins, was advised that needed new ABS pump that would cost approx £1,000 the mechanic had spoke to a local VW dealer that advised they had a good will fund I should be able to claim on as long as I had full service history.

I got in touch with 8< snip - no naming/shaming please VW where I had gotten the car from they couldnt have been less helpful & rude, they said as I hadnt had the car serviced with them there was nothing they would do. She said I had invalidated the warranty as not having car serviced there even though I had had the small fan fixed under warrany & had an end of warranty check in May. I later spoke to the service manager who said it would be because of not having the brake fluid changed. They also wanted to charge me another £75 for another diagnostic check even though I had already had that done & had the fault code. They said I couldnt expect them to pay anything if I didnt give them any money!!!

I then decided to sort it without there help & contacted VW customer services who set up a claims file, a week later I got a call & was advised as long as I can provide invoices from the garage where I had it serviced VW will pay the full amount & pay for the diagnostic.

I have spoke to numerous mechanics who have advised that it is a common problem and a car 3 year old should not need the brake fluid changing!!!!

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 06/12/2009 at 20:19

Just paid a deposit! - DartGolf
I just paid a deposit on an 06 Golf 1.9 TDi - 18k miles - I noticed the ESP light was on during the test drive and mentioned to the dealer - they said "its probably a faulty switch" and said it'll be sorted before I collect the car. The cynic in me is worried that the garage (non-VW) is able to temporarily fix the problem and avoid the expensive VW solution, leaving me to foot the bill. Is this possible? I assume VW will provide documentation of what they did to fix it and this will form part of the car's history? I havent had a VW before so dont really know what to expect!

Just paid a deposit! - Paul_
I would be worried as well. The only way to fix it is to replace the ABS pump. If they have done this then you should be able to see the new ABS pump under the bonnet. It would be possible to make it look like it was working by fitting a timing device on the switch.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Spilk2
Hello Honestjohn. I've been following this saga for the last few weeks. Could you expand on your understanding of the FOC offer if 'not too old' ?

My Golf 1.9 diesel was registered September 2005. I bought it as a VW approved used car in October 2008 with full VAG service history and a year's warranty. Less than 4 weeks after this expired the ESP light came on. The car had recently been VAG serviced, with brake fluid change, and had 36k on the clock.

After long delays I've reached the stage of being offered what thet say is 60% plus 10% from the dealer. This still leaves 420 pounds to pay which seems unreasonable to me. Using your site as evidence I said some people have been offered 100%. They said this was only for cars less than 40 months old (and with less than 60k miles?).

Has anyone had a better offer than this?

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Dorsetdriver
I joined the ESP 'light on' club a couple of weeks ago. Took my 56 Golf 1.9TDI to my local VW dealer who confirmed that the ABS unit needed replacing. The car is 2 months out of warranty with a full VW service history, and 43,000 mileage.
They have agreed to pay 100% under their goodwill scheme, didn't even charge for the diagnosis.
Understandably very happy.
This site helped argue the case that it was a known design fault, nevertheless they offered the free repair without argument.
ESP Light On Continuously - Davoboy
I recently became another victim of esp problem had it checked at loacl dealer,they send abs needs replacing,contacted head office for me,they came back and said replace it foc,but needs £180 towards labour,had it completed,they sed be intouch with invoice after sorted it with head office,this was bout 2-3 weeks ago,not heard a thing,i mite just refused to pay if they ever do ring.wot can they do????
ESP Light On Continuously - WorkshopTech
Does anyone know what the other VAG brands (Skoda, SEAT, Audi) using the same unit are offering? Is it also 100%? And what about BMW? We had a BMW in last week with this same unit/fault and sent him off to the dealer to see if they would repair it FOC. Not heard anything more yet.
ESP Light On Continuously - JohnM{P}
From earlier HJ post of 1st Dec in this thread:
" ...Golfs, Golf +, Leons, Alteas, Toledos and Octavias. Audi is usually better about this sort of thing. The problem also seems to affect BMW 1 Series, BMW 3 Series, Volvo S40/V50s and Mazda 3s".

If Volvo S40/V50 and Mazda3 are also afflicted, what about the Focus family...?
ESP Light On Continuously - WorkshopTech
Yes, I know what's affected, I've seen them with my own eyes. Anyone know what these makes are doing for their owners so that I can advise them when they come in with the ESP light on?
ESP Light On Continuously - Paul_
"Does anyone know what the other VAG brands (Skoda, SEAT, Audi) using the same unit are offering? Is it also 100%? And what about BMW? We had a BMW in last week with this same unit/fault and sent him off to the dealer to see if they would repair it FOC. Not heard anything more yet. "

Audi have offered me nothing for my 06 plate A3 with 21k miles on the clock. They have been less than useless. They insist it is not a fault - as it has lasted for (just over) three years. I think they are lying to me which adds insult to injury. The part was totally redesigned in Apri 2008 as "product development" they revealed upon my prompting. As a cynic I read this as fault fixing. To add weight to this argument when I emailed to ask in what way the new product was better than the old one I didn't get a reply.

Edited by Peter_ on 16/12/2009 at 20:53

ESP Light On Continuously - Glescapal
Can I join this ESP light on club too. My Golf plus 56 plate 6 weeks out of warranty suffered the same problem. I had a pal do a diagnostic he quoted me 1500. Phoned my dealer to see if there was a recall I wasn't specific about what the recall was about and was told yes something wrong with the gearbox code 35 AT booked it in for next Wednesday. I informed her the reason for my call was the ESP light no recall reported she said. Phone VW customer services they said I must get diagnostic and report from dealer before they could discuss. Will see what happens Wednesday keep you posted The wife came across this site and thread by accident and I'm glad she did gives me something to argue about Thanks everyone.
05 1.6 eSP Light on continuously - sgb999

hi My eSP light has come on - 05 Registered Golf

will be taking it Vw for diagnostics.

has anyone reported this to watchDoG, if so has anyone had a reply????????

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - resolved - gabonator
It looks that this forum is quite alive, so I would like to share my experience with the ESP light always on. Few days I have been installing a sound system in my VW New Beetle 1999 2.0L following this tutorial newbeetle.org/forums/attachments/audio-video-how/4...f

After removing removing the air filter, disassembling the cable channel, disassembling the dashboard and pulling the cable harness a little, I needed to move the car a few meters away. For my surprise after ignition the ESP light stayed always on.

I was planning to take the car to a service to check the error codes with diagnostics, but I was in a hurry and I knew that I did not anything wrong that should damage the ABS system. So I tried to reseat and fasten the connectors coming to the control units and bend the cables a little. And voila, the ESP light is on only for few seconds during vehicle initialization and then it turns off - signalizing that the abs/esp system is working well.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - resolved - Paul_
Your car is a 1999. The fault above is to do with later ABS / ESP units - typically on 2004 cars or later (Tourans, Audi A3, Golf Mk 5, Seat Leon, Skoda Octavia). Wiggling cables will not fix this.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - resolved - AussieJames
Thankyou to everyone contributing to this issue. Our 1.6 POLO GTI 52K klm's 2006 and just 5 Months out of warranty (Only serviced with VW Dealerships Melbourne Australia) has just joined the ESP Light on club. We have booked into for diagnostic next week. The dealership informed me they are not aware of any issues with the ABS control Unit (Interesting!). Quoted $148 for diagnostic. Will update the outcome of possible cost/contribution from Dealership, or VW, for anyone in Australia experiencing this issue.

These posts have helped to understand the issue....and hopefully given us a leg to stand on re cost.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - resolved - Glescapal
Hi folks Glescapal keeping you posted as promised this morning my dealer replaced the faulty part.... ESP light now out and working NO CHARGE not even for the diagnostic. Again thanks to all who posted I know if I had gone to the dealer without the info I got from here I would have got nowhere.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - resolved - Westbear
Also in the club - but was "only" quoted £1000 by VW Chiswick.

54 Golf TDI. arrggg. No action taken yet.

Would this cause a MOT fail?

Edited by WESTBEAR on 08/01/2010 at 18:59

05 1.4 ESP / ABS Light On Continuously - MOT - VW-Claret

Having just bought a 55 plate golf knowing the ABS and ESP light was on continuously before buying the car made me feel sick when reading the posts and costs involved ( I SHOULD OF CHECKED!!! ). I have just taken the car to my local garage hoping it isn't the ABS Pump. However I just wanted to check with other people is this the part causing issues ( As a rule? ) The reason I ask is I have managed to source the ABS pump online at approx £170 mark and wanted to check before buying it that this part is normaly as fault. Also the Golf is due an MOT and my local garage thinks this could be a fail with the light showing on the dash?? ( He advised he would get back to me ) I can't see that's correct, what about other cars that don't have ABS??

Please advise, what was going to be a cheap safe car for my wife and new born has turned into a bit of a nightmare!!
05 1.4 ESP / ABS Light On Continuously - MOT - Glescapal
You can get info by 'phoning VW Customer Services on 0800 083 3920, they insist that you get a diagnostic done at a VW approved garage and they then get the report. My dealer E-Mailed them the results of my diagnostic while I was there and approval for the replacement was given there and then on condition I had a full VW approved service history which the dealer confirmed. To the 55 plate it is the ASB pump they replaced on mine. My mechanic mate says the ESP light being on continually is not an MOT failure and this is confirmed by the lack of involvement by VOSA and the fact there has been no recall.
05 1.4 ESP / ABS Light On Continuously - MOT - Westbear
Thank you Glescapal. I'll see how I get on.
05 1.4 ESP / ABS Light On Continuously - MOT - Paul_
Having just bought a 55 plate golf knowing the ABS and ESP light was on.......


Normally with this ESP fault only the ESP light will be on and that is not an MOT fail. The fact that the ABS light is also on may suggest hopefully a different problem, however ABS light on is an MOT fail. Be aware that the parts are faulty (they were redesigned in Apr 2008) so second hand ones pre-dating that are likely to fail. Remanufactured ones have started popping up though which is good news.

Edited by Dynamic Dave on 09/01/2010 at 14:30

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - simon p
had this problem with my passat taxi was told it was a faulty sensor box under the middle of the back seat called a yaw sensor. the problem was a lose connection caused by the passengers sitting on the back seat and breaking the connection seems silly but i placed some cardboard under the sensor wire to stop in bending down when people sat on the seat been okay for 3 monthes now.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Paul_
The part used on a Passat isn't the same to my knowledge. The fault here is very specific. It is the Teves Mk60 ABS pump manufactured by ATE / Continental, which has the ECU contained within it.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - AndyT
The part used on a Passat isn't the same to my knowledge. The fault here
is very specific. It is the Teves Mk60 ABS pump manufactured by ATE / Continental
which has the ECU contained within it.

Is this fitted to the Golf/Touran only?

I have an '05 Bora PD Highline, and am worried that it may have the same issue looming in the future.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Paul_
I think (I am not 100%) you may be ok. The Bora shares it parts with the Mk4 Golf, and the ECU and pump were separate parts at that time, so you can just change the bit that has gone wrong and it costs much less.

These faulty parts are used in Toran / Golf Mk 5 / Golf Plus / Audi A3 / Skoda Octavia / Seat Leon etc.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - AndyT
Thanks for that. Sounds encouraging.
VW JETTA 56 PLATE 1.9TDI ESP Light On Continuously - gazzab
I have also just joined the ESP light on club. My VW Jetta has 31,000 on the clock and is 3 months out of warranty. I have paid £49 for the diagnostic at the dealers to confirm my worst fears. I was told by the service manager at my local VW dealership that because I did not get it serviced by VW they will probably not show much goodwill. I pointed out that the vehicle has been serviced at the correct intervals and Manufacturers parts were used. I decided to contact a solicitor who has advised me to go down the goodwill route first and if I do not get a suitable resolution consider lodging a claim in the small claims court. I have contacted VW customer services direct and have provided them with all the info they have requested I am awaiting their decision. I hope I do not have to go down the legal route but I am prepared to as I believe it is disgraceful that a company that knowingly has a faulty part on their cars is questioning their liability when this part fails.
ESP & Emissions light on in cold weather - Q1
I have Mk IV Golf (04) and recently had the ESP light on problem - also the Emissions light on as well, for good measure! It started around 22nd Dec 09 and has now gone off (Jan 18th) - this coincides with weather temperature getting abouve 6 deg C - and I remember last year the ESP light came on for about a week after a cold spell and then when it got warmer, it went off!

Both warning lights were on and off a bit intermittently - amazingly, they were off when at garage for service, but I reported them having been on - garage said they investigated and nothing wrong. Car passed its MOT on the same day, so assume emissions can't be that bad.

Don't know whether it's connected (literally!), but the ESP button has no effect on the light on the control panel being on or off.

Hope this is helpful - anyone else seemingly affected by temperature in this way?
VW JETTA 56 PLATE 1.9TDI ESP Light On Continuously - vwnc
I too have a VW JETTA on a 56 plate where the ESP light was on continuously. I took it to my local VW dealer who did a diagnostic check and told me that the ABS unit had failed and this needed replacing.The warranty ran out in October and they told me that they would contact VW to obtain some kind of goodwill as the cost to me would be £2500 !!.As I had not had my car serviced by VW for some time they told me that they could not offer any kind of goodwill and I would have to pay the full amount.They did say however that if I had my car serviced today by them at a cost of £240 they would contact VW again to see if they would then offer some goodwill against the ABS unit.
This I did and VW have now fitted the ABS unit free of charge.
Thanks VW but reading all of these blogs on this matter this problem needs sorting.
VW JETTA 56 PLATE 1.9TDI ESP Light On Continuously - happyman
I too join the ESP light on club! Golf Mark 5, 55 plate with 45,000 miles. Local garage finally managed to decipher the fault code and they contacted local VW garage who said the fault was as "common as muck" The part alone was £705 - I was astonished... I am concerned about trying to get a goodwill compensation from VW as I have had the car serviced at my local garage (not the VW delaer) Am I on good grounds if I try to persuade VW that they are adopting some sort of restrictive practice by insisting that as the car does not have a full VW service history that they won't have the repair done under this goodwill scheme? If anybody wants me to add my name to Watchdog or others then just let me know.
GUeSS what - 05 Vw golf eSP Light on continuously - sgb999

My eSP light has come on my 05 Registered Golf

i will be taking it to Vw for Diagnostics

has anyone reported this to watchDoG - if so did you get a reply.

Should this be a free repair????????

Vw Jetta 56 PLate 1.9tDi eSP Light on continuously - shivers

My 2006 Vw Golf joined the eSP light on club earlier this year. i too had my car serviced at my local garage and not the dealership. i had to pay Vw dealership another £50 for the diagnostic check , which spat out the G201 error, just the same as my mechanics diagnostic check.

i was told my case was now with the warranty department. i was contacted a couple fo days ago to advise me they would not be paying for the module. i was then asked if Vw were to fix my car, what had i contributed to Vw. i was astonished at this statement from the customer services department.

this is now in the hands of my Solicitor. this fault lies with Vw, the sooner they accept responsibility the better

VW JETTA 56 PLATE 1.9TDI ESP Light On Continuously - gazzab
VW JETTA 56 PLATE 1.9TDI ESP Light On Continuously - gazzab

I have also just joined the ESP light on club. My VW Jetta has 31,000 on the clock and is 3 months out of warranty. I have paid £49 for the diagnostic at the dealers to confirm my worst fears. I was told by the service manager at my local VW dealership that because I did not get it serviced by VW they will probably not show much goodwill. I pointed out that the vehicle has been serviced at the correct intervals and Manufacturers parts were used. I decided to contact a solicitor who has advised me to go down the goodwill route first and if I do not get a suitable resolution consider lodging a claim in the small claims court. I have contacted VW customer services direct and have provided them with all the info they have requested I am awaiting their decision. I hope I do not have to go down the legal route but I am prepared to as I believe it is disgraceful that a company that knowingly has a faulty part on their cars is questioning their liability when this part fails.

I dealt with VW customer services direct as I was none too impressed by the service managers approach at my local VW dealer. They agreed to pay the full amount of the replacement cost. However when I contacted my local dealership the service manager informed me that she did not agree with head offices decision and she had contacted them to tell them this! I was shocked to say the least and told the manager to book my car in as instructed by head office. She replied " I don't agree with VW replacing the unit free of charge as you have not had it serviced by our dealership" I had had the vehicle serviced from when I purchsed it from the dealer as per manufacturers spec and as per manufacturers intervals and also using VW approved parts. The VW dealership had also carried out a repair under warranty 12 months previously therefore if the servicing at the dealer was not as per warranty agreement why did they carry out this work in the first place. I can honestly say I will NEVER buy another VW car as I find it absolutely shocking that they are a supposed prestige brand yet deal withn their customers in such a shabby way. I sought legal advice prior to my satisfactory solution asnd was advised to mention the sale of goods act and point out that as the part was not serviceable in any way there is a reasonable expectation for it to last the lifetime of the vehicle. I was also advised to mention this in the car showroom main foyer on a saturday afternoon whrn most car sales are made as the last thing the dealership wants is a disgruntled customer putting off prospective buyers. Good luck to all with your claims and don't give up.

Edited by Avant on 14/04/2010 at 00:00

VW JETTA 56 PLATE 1.9TDI ESP Light On Continuously - shivers

Dont give up hope. As you can see from my blog above, I ended up having to go down the Legal route. I had my Solicitor draw up a letter stating VW were in breach of Sale of Goods Act.. in that "not fit for the purpose". It took a little over a week, but VW are going to install my new ABS pump, and I dont have to pay a penny. It pays to be persistent. Good luck.

VW JETTA 56 PLATE 1.9TDI ESP Light On Continuously - JettaDriver

I also drive a 56 reg Jetta and have joined the ESP Light On club today. I was quoted just under £1200 for a replacement ABS Control Unit from the VW main dealer in Birmingham - the place where my car has been regularly serviced throughout its life. They've usually been pretty good at dealing with things but today the service was atrocious (from the Service Manager nonetheless).

Thanks to all for posting these messages, I have a much clearer idea where I stand now and the options that are available. Needless to write I have absolutely no intention of forking out the £1200 quoted. In fact, they might have put me off VWs for life unless they pull something out of the bag.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Bryden

Just happened with my Mk5 Golf.

Just wondering if I'm in for the full amount as I'm on a 54 plate and done 84k. Only thing in my favour is I bought from dealer and have full VAG history. I'm clinging to the bad design/quality argument.

Has anybody extracted a VW dealer discount on a higher mileage out of warrenty model?

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - sgb999

I have now reported this to Watchdog.

The more people who do this the more chance of a result

Please go on to watchdog website and report

It only takes 2 mins and hopefully they will take action with loads of reports


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Avant

Thanks for that SGB. Anyone who has joined this thread recently - note HJ's posts of 1 and 4 December. It seems that VAG will replace the offending part FOC if:

- it is made by Teves

- the car is recently out of warranty (not known what the cut-off is)

- it has a full VW service history.

Otherwise there sems to be a sliding scale of goodwill payments depending on how old the car is.

On the face of it, that doesn't seem unreasonable. But it all depends on how VAG interpret the second and third points above.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Paul_

On the face of it, it doesn't seem unreasonable.

But what VAG have said to HonestJohn are just words. Their actions do not back it up, as many people have found.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - HP

55 plate golf plus. Joined ESP club recently. 40000miles and one non dealer service.

After much discussion VW offered 40% as goodwill which I feel is un acceptable

Would Shivers be able to share outline/wording of solicitors letter as feel legal route is probably my best option now. Who did you deal withat VW



54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - Westbear

Like many others have had the same problem, first diagnosed in Oct last year.

Spoke to franchised dealer asking for what they could do about it - they offered 5% off which I turned down.

At that point I assumed they had contacted VW Customer Service - which they hadn't.

This year the dealer then failed my MOT because of the ESP light on the dash.

Based on the advice on this board I took it to a different garage, which after refering to the experts at the DoT(?), gave me my MOT.

Back to the franchise dealer and got my £50 back on the MOT!

I then phoned VW cust service who initally offered 5% discount (provided by the dealer).

I rejected that, and they came with 10% which I also rejected.

They said that this offer was based on the car now being 6 years old which is outside their goodwill period and also that they had changed the goodwill rules at the beginning of this year (from and to I don't know).

I pointed out that my car was 5 .9 years old when I raised the issue (and hense the old rules should apply) - but the garage had failed to contact them and said that I would need to take this up with a solictor if I didn't get at least 50% covered.

I now have a had an offer of 60% contribution - which I've accepted!

Other facts:

* The car has had two previous owners

* It has had an incomplete service history

* 60k on the clock

* It was serviced by VW as long as I have had it (both before and after the failure) - this was key to me getting an offer

* VW Customer service are friendly and do call you back when promised

Edited by Westbear on 28/04/2010 at 18:15

54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - dr. jon


As yet another ESP case these listings have been extremely helpful in establishing costs, likely outcomes and the best route towardsmaking a recovery.

If I understand correctly there has been inconsistency with the standards applied to the MOT test by different garages. Would you be able to identify the garage that passed the MOT with the ESP light on or provide details of any statement from the DoT to support this?.

Also what was the specific diagnostic fault - was this the 201 that has been commonly reported?

I assure you I would not wish to implicate your garage in any way but see this as a precedent or "foot in the door "that could help fellow ESP sufferers get past the MOT and continue earning a crust whilst haggling their case with VWCS!

Any help you can offer would be appreciated along with the experience of any others whose car has passed the MOT with ESP light on - or not passed. My local (non dealer) garage is saying that it will not pass the MOT with an ABS fault.

Many thanks


54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - iusedtomilkcows


My ESP light came on during school run yesterday. Diagnostic done by friend this morn and confirmed car (54 plate Golf 1.9 TDI - 59,000 miles) needs a new ABS unit costing £705 plus VAT & fitting! The place where he orders VW parts from said they had placed orders for 5 of these units this week! No way can VW say this isn't a major problem! Found this group and one on Facebook - in shock at how many people are affected by this - glad I am not alone! Just spoken to VW dealer where I bought the car who admitted the problem and said I could put a claim in but would need diagnostic done by them 1st. VW may part pay for repair depending on my history with THEM!!! Have had 2 services done by them - had an early service done in Feb when car had MOT with local garage, not VW. Hope this doesn't effect my claim! Why an earth should how loyal we are to VW depend on how much they pay out - surely it should be VW showing how loyal they are to its customers - we are not to blame!!!

Will keep you posted. x

54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - Paul_

If anyone has this problem and VAG will not help in any way shape or form then the units can now be reconditioned by some companies. There is a company on ebay doing them and they give a 2 year warranty which is as good as you get with VAG.

Plus you can sleep easy knowing you haven't allowed VAG to profit through dishonestly and unwillingness to accept liability.

A good independent specialist will fit it for £150 and that will include bleeding your brakes so you can save a bit on your next service.

Everyone who has this fault is being ripped off by VAG. Here is my rationale for saying this:

The ABS Pump Module consists of two parts. Namely the ABS ECU and the ABS Pump. The ABS ECU does not go wrong. The ABS Pump contains the sensor in it which does go wrong. However the ABS ECU can be bought on its own for around £500. But the pump, the faulty part, can only be bought with an ECU for a total price of £800 - £1200 depending on what car it is for. £500 of this is therefore for the ECU. A part which is not faulty but you are being forced to replace. When I asked VAG for the rationale behind this they ceased to reply to my e-mails. Basically there are two parts A and B. A does not go wrong, but you can buy A on its own. B does go wrong, but you cannot buy B on its own, you must buy A + B. There is no good reason for this since A + B are easily unbolted from each other in a matter of seconds.

54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - Westbear


I think you're going to have an up hill struggle because..

- The car is older than 6 years

- The car wasn't under a VW service when the part failed.

Try your luck with the VW Cust Services - the number is in this thread - but without legal help I doubt you'll get more that 10% off - and that would be funded by the garage not VW HQ...Sorry for the bad news but I think Sale of Goods act is your only friend...

54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - iusedtomilkcows

Thanks for the reply. The car is 5yrs 3mths (registered Feb) so as it is under 6 yrs old I should be able to throw the Sale of Goods Act at them. Also the last service I had done in Feb was an early one completed when it had its MOT (at local independant garage). VW will flag up my next one in another 1000 miles. As I had the 2 services before that with them do I even need to tell them about this early service???

There is a lady on Facebook with a car the same age as mine who has battled with them so hard she has ended up with 100% of the costs paid so I'm not going to settle for anything less. If they do that for one they should do it for everybody!!!


54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - Westbear

dr. Jon.

In short - (as I understand it) the unlying issue with this fault is the traction control and not the abs.

A garage can fail the car because of the ESP light as they might assume the ABS is faulty - I believe they need do a full diagnositic to prove otherwise.

The VW franchise garage I used should have known better has they had already done the diagnostic - but I guessed the MOT kid and the mechanic didn't talk to each other! I challenged them on my assumption above on which they decided not to argue with and gave me my £50 back.

(I know little about cars - so am just repeating what I've been told by various mechanics)

Edited by Westbear on 30/04/2010 at 00:18

54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - JasonV

One common mis-conception with this issue is that your car will fail the MOT. I have been informed by a technical speciailist at VW HQ that your car will NOT fail the MOT just because the ESP light is on and he also said that it wouldn't fail even if the ABS light is on. This is because in both circumstances you still have a functioning braking system - both ESP and ABS are just enhancements.

54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - Paul_

If the ABS light is on, your car WILL fail its MOT. ABS in not just an enhancement - all new cars must have it by law now. This has been the case since 2004.

If just the ESP light is on then it should pass the MOT.

The specialist at VW HQ should not be offering opinions on this in my view as it is a matter for VOSA. If anyone has any doubts contact VOSA like I did, and they respond quite quickly. I have it in writing from them that my car will not fail its MOT due to the ESP light being on.

When did the part change? - Twincharged

Does anyone know for 100% when VW changed the part they use to one that dosen't get this problem? I am looking at used Golfs and unsure what year I need to be safe. I've seen some people saying June-06 onwards, 2007 onwards or 2008 onwards... very confusing!

Also, are certain models more likely to get this issue than others? I've heard of lots of 1.6, 1.9 and 2.0 cars failing, but no 1.4s which are what I'm looking at.


When did the part change? - Paul_

The part changed in Apr 2008. I have that in writing from VAG. However - I have a few things in writing from VAG that have since proved to be false so I would take that with a pinch of salt.

Late last year there was waiting lists for these parts. Then all of a sudden there were several thousand in stock, just in the UK. You don't stock that many unless there is demand.

Edited by Paul_ on 02/05/2010 at 23:27

55 golf TDI 39K - bayleaf

Oh dear.. it seems I am also joining the ESP light-on club. Very glad to have found this forum. Has anybody else also had the steering support light come on too? They both came on at the same time on way home from work this evening. Relies greatly appreciated!


55 golf TDI 39K - bayleaf

Whoops! Meant 'replies'..

55 golf TDI 39K - Kewsea

I have just had the ABS pump replaced with a genuine VW part and recoded etc albeit by an independent VW specialist. Before it was done I only had to tap the brake pedal to apply the brakes - they were actually quite severe. Since the job was done the pedal travels some way down before the brakes are applied and they don't feel quite as 'secure' as they did before.

Is this usual after having this job done? It was the infamous ESP light on job that meant it needed replacing but am just a bit concerned about the change in feel of the brakes since.

55 golf TDI 39K - Honestjohn

Faced with scores of readers with this problem being quoted up to £2,000 for an official fix, I quoted the much cheaper permanent fix by:


VW took great exception to this, and I resolved that matter by asking for an e-mail that anyone with the problem could complain to. They gave me:


So, if anyone tries the VW e-mail and gets nowhere, please let me know and I'll take the matter up yet again with VW.


Edited by Honestjohn on 20/05/2010 at 19:36

55 golf TDI 39K - JohnnyR

I tried sending my "thoughts" to the e-mail address you suggested but my e-mail has been bounced back twice. Obviously they have given up on this.

My Golf is a 54 (November) but only has 22,000 miles on the clock, less than 10,000 since I bought it; none the less they have refused any contribution. I'm looking for a cheaper fix than the £1,200 I have been quoted to fix error 01435.....
55 golf TDI 39K - timp

I don't think this is usual - my brakes felt identical after the ABS unit was replaced and also after the 2-yearly brake fluid changes that I've had.


55 golf plus fsi, 34k - mmorand


the esp light came on my car about a week ago. since then i have taken the car to vw where they carried out a diagnosis and told me that the they had 'found abs control unit faulty, new one required at £1320'.

they told me that as my 2009 service had not been done at vw they would not contribute anything toward the costs.

i told them that i knew it was a common fault and that it was a non serviceable part. they told me that there was noting else they could do but i could contact customer care.

so i called customer care (0800 0833920) who told me that they would back the decision of the retailer and as the retailer were not willing to contribute there was nothing they could do. so no goodwill for me.

i have gone back to the dealership with the information that it seems as tho there decision was paramount, where i was again told that there was nothing they would do. i feel like customer care and the dealership are trying to pass the buck, which i am having none of.

i have already emailed watchdog and will continue to fight this. the way i see it is i could buy and insure another car for the price they expect me to pay for this fault, which is ridiculous.

2007 Golf SE tdi - Andrew hounddog

Thankfully, I mentioned that the ESP light had just come on when my son (with a Touran) mentioned the 'commonness' of this. I searched the web for 'VW ESP' - up popped this trail -if/when printed - 18 pages of A4! Booked in to the dealer from whom it was purchased and by whom fully serviced (or other group companies) at 3 years 21 days and 42k miles. Refused to pay for diagnostics. They advised that the ESP/ABS was failing - the ABS seemed to work fine on the ice on the way!! Repeated that I would not pay. Referred to VW who offered the part plus 50% of labour. Despite protestations they would not move. I authorised the work 'under protest and subject to claim after completion',. On collection handed in letter claiming from the dealer under the sale of goods and fitness for purpose; also sent letter first class to registered office of the group threatening small claims court in 21 days if not settled. This all took place last week finishing on Friday afternoon. Thursday morning, I receive acknowledgement from the dealer by post and then a telephone call that seemed to indicate that VW were now picking up the whole tab. Either way Benfield Group will be repaying the 50% labour cost I incurred (£145). But why did I have to get so stroppy when it is such a publicised issue? Why did the dealer not accept the responsibility and sort ot out between them and the manufacturer. VW definitely losing their place in customer service. Unfortunately just being replaced by other 'group' members e.g. the previously much maligned Skoda range! With two cars to be replaced in next 18 months, may need to reassess Benfield Group as the supplier(s)

55 golf TDI 39K - LittleAl

Before doing anything else, replace the ABS fuse with a new one. It's a 30 amp fuse on the lower right corner of the fuse board by the battery. I had ABS light on and even changed the ECU but eventually I found the problem and it was caused by pitting on the blades of the fuse. If you have the same probblem as I did, you will find that the fuse looks fine, and isn't blown. if you look very carefully, you will see deep pits where it contacts with the connector. Even emery paper won't fix it, you MUST replace the fuse with a new one. Once you chage the fuse, drive 100yards and the ABS light will go out and stay out. What seems to happen is that the ABS draws a high current - hence the 30 amp fuse. Once it corrodes slightly then it starts to arc and that in turn pits the fuse. At some point, the current is not sufficient to run the ECU so it shuts down. That's all there is to it. Replace the fuse.

Of course you might have an actual faulty ECU, but I would try the fuse first before the dealer gets hold of it and replaces the ECU (and the fuse)

ESP light - simonesplight

The ESP light has been on in my car since i bought it last week. It's a golf registered in July 2008 and contstucted in June 2008. There were 59700 miles on the clock when i got it I drove it home and was out of warranty by the time I got there. My local VW dealer is charging me for the diagnostic test as I have now done 60300 miles. After being on contstantly for a week the ESP Light has now gone off but I can't get it to switch on so I am going to go ahead with the diagnostic next week and see what they say.

As far as i can tell i should get the fault fixed FOC because the car is under 6 years old, is only just out of warranty and has a full vw service history. I will report what the outcome is next week of the diagnostic, my local dealer has preordered the part and say they will fit it on the day if VAG authorises it.

A previous thread mentioned that the ABS pump was redesigned in April 2008 does anyone know if that means that a car constructed in June 2008 would have had the new part fitted or would they still be fitting the old faulty one? I am keen not to pay for the diagnostic if i can avoid it.

any thoughts?


55 golf TDI 39K - jj79


I have an 07 reg golf 1.6fsi. 13000 miles. 6 wks out of guarantee. the yellow light came on, took it to vw garage and was diagnosed with an abs/eps problem. Complained to VW UK customer service UK. After numerous calls to them and complaining they have agreed to cover all costs. Including the diagnostic test! I hope this will stop customers paying out for a repairs of up to £2000!!! As i strongly believe that these cars should have been recalled. Hope this helps! I think it will help if you have a full service history. The phonecall is free 0800 number. So its worth a go!

57 golf s - BETHAN

I've also joined the ESP light club !! With two weeks left on my warranty I consider myself extremely lucky. Coupled with that I have also had an airbag light come on and been told its airbag system failure. Thank God for warranty. I will be extending my current warranty now......

54 Golf TDI = ESP Light = Resolved - ESP Light On Club Member

I have just developed the problem too. I am due to see a dealer next week, but after paying for the diagnostic (grr) I am bracing myself for a fight. VW need to understand that this sort of issue will lose them custom and they can only save face by doing the decent thing and reparing this clearly sub standard part free of charge. I wonder what Toyota would have done in this circumstance? Surely this faulty "safety system" warrents a safety recall? Irritatingly my car has had 1 non dealer service (nothing to do with the braking and handling system at all) and I have no doubt that VW will capitolise in this to their advantage. Not happy, but willing to be pleasently surprised.

06 1.9 TDI ESP Light on - ESP Light On Club Member

I too have joined the ESP club. My car is 3 months out of warranty and has had one independent garage service iaw vw spec. I spoke to a VW dealer locally to see what offer VW might be able to give me to replace this clearly faulty part. He wants me to cough up £35 plus VAT for a diagnostic and has offered to deal with VW to get a discount on this part. He thinks that having a non dealer service may affect my grounds for a claim. This is the second Golf that I have owned; the evidence for this part being substandard is pretty compelling: I therefore think that VWs decision on who pays will influence my decision ever to buy a VW again. Surely anything affecting braking or handling should result in a safety recall?

By the way I can't read the last part of HJ's post on 20 May 2010. Can this be resent?

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Honestjohn

Faced with scores of readers with this problem being quoted up to £2,000 for an official fix, I quoted the much cheaper permanent fix by:


VW took great exception to this, and I resolved that matter by asking for an e-mail that anyone with the problem could complain to. They gave me:


So, if anyone tries the VW e-mail and gets nowhere, please let me know and I'll take the matter up yet again with VW.


Edited by Honestjohn on 20/05/2010 at 19:36

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Honestjohn

I forgot to reply to the first post instead of the last post. But my reply still showed up in full when I looked it up. Strange.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Avant

HJ's post gets cut off in midstream on my system: here it is in full in case this happened to anyone else.

Faced with scores of readers with this problem being quoted up to £2,000
for an official fix, I quoted the much cheaper permanent fix by:


VW took great exception to this, and I resolved that matter by asking for
an e-mail that anyone with the problem could complain to. They gave me:


So, if anyone tries the VW e-mail and gets nowhere, please let me know and
I'll take the matter up yet again with VW.


Edited by Avant on 23/05/2010 at 17:00

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - primeradriver

On what grounds have VW taken exception?

That a company has the audacity to provide a better fix, and deny VW their profit on a product that is patently unfit for purpose in the first place?

VW need to tread with care -- if I buy a DVD recorder with a design fault (and I have been through this with such an item), the company would appear to be liable to replace the ENTIRE item, not just the faulty component, under the SOGA.

Where in the act does it state that a car is any different?

Disgusting, shabby tactics. I was tempted to buy an Octavia of around this age; I wouldn't touch one with a ten foot pole now. "Taken exception" indeed -- how dare they!

Do we even know that VW's replacement component won't fail again three years down the line, rendering an eight year old car sc***?

Edited by primeradriver on 24/05/2010 at 22:43

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE

Well said.

As a VAG customer I have experienced at first hand their wallet-raiding tactics, most of which appear to originate from M-K.

Luckily, my vehicle has been reliable (it has Bosch ABS) but I have had to take several preventative measures such as pollen filter sealing and plenum drain bung removal to achieve this.

Despite the reliability of the vehicle, I am displeased to the point of specifying a non-VAG replacement because my vehicle was conceived as a clone of an earlier VW branded model with all of its well known pre-exisiting faults. As a blocked plenum drain can cause effective brake failure through lack of servo assist, this is not a trivial matter.

Why is VOSA so spineless over this and the Teves Mk 60 problem? A big car with no brake servo is a killer.

Vote with your cheque book guys - these people are not selling an honest product and are certainly not supporting it honourably.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - primeradriver

Indeed re the VOSA thing. I don't understand how this can not be a safety issue. There is a risk, a theoretical one I'll grant you, that a driver's first knowledge of the ESP failing is the car leaving the road.

Seems to me that some other manufacturers have been asked to recall for much less. I'm not entirely convinced by the argument that this isn't an MOT fail either. Can anyone say with authority that the ESP and ABS do not work together in any way? I would have thought that the two would be fairly closely linked at a software level, and the failure of one side could have an impact on the stability of the other. As the code is closed-source, it's unlikely to be provable one way or the other.

Actually, the fact that VW seem so horrified at the idea of a third party modifying their kit can only lead to two conclusions: 1, they are cynically protecting this profiteering scheme, or 2, they know of software-level settings that could be upset by such modifications, in which case there must be a safety aspect to running the car sans-ESP. If (2) is indeed true then the part needs to be recalled IMMEDIATELY in my opinion.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - SoggyMoggy

I too have this problem with my 06 Seat Leon. My 3 year warranty ended on 17/3/09. I was diagnosed at a local (non Seat) garage and immediately sent an e-mail to the Seat garage about a 'good will' gesture. They got in touch with Seat UK who told them that I couldn't get any good will.

So I called Seat UK directly and was told I needed a Seat garage to diagnose the problem then they would open for them to consider. I did this at a cost of around £75 and was told again last night (a message passed through the garage) that I wasn't going to get any good will. Seat don't consider cases when the car is over 4 years of age. I tried calling them to get a full explanation and to recoup the costs of the diagnosis seeing as the only reason I got one was for them. The guy I got on the phone couldn't help me, but intimated that I would be uinlikely to get the diagnosis costs back. I'm expecting a call today from the girl who dealt with my case.

After reading this thread last night I have got in touch with VW customer services and copied Seat customer services into the mail. I don't expect VW to do anything though and Seat seem adamant that they won't give anything. I'm considering going down the repair route if Seat won't give anything, but need to clear it with a local garage to do the labour.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - SoggyMoggy

I've just received a voicemail message from Seat UK. They 'aged' my car incorrectly and after reassessing it they are willing to give my some good will. They will determine the value after speaking to the garage.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - SoggyMoggy

The message gets cut off if you are using Internet Explorer, it works fine with Safari.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - SoggyMoggy

I got the repair done at the Seat Dealer and they charged just under £500 with 50% of the costs being picked up by Seat UK. I didn't get anything back for the extortionate diagnosis charge.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - ChroniX


I am also having this ESP light in dashboard problem, and I have sent mail to announced email adress, but is receiving Undeliverable Message reports.

Seems like VW has deactivated this email adress.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - AndyVWGolf

Hi There,

Unfortunately I'm now a member of this club.

I've got a 05 1.9 Golf with 56K on the clock - I bought this from a VW Dealer nearly 3 years ago but I've since moved and the VW dealer in my new area are awful, even more expensive than the original dealer and customer service that I can only put on par with Fawlty Towers so I went to an independent VW specialist for the last 2 services.

I've just called the VW dealer who I bought the car from and they've said due to the car's age and the fact I've not had it serviced solely with a VW dealer, they won't help and nor with VW - I've just sent a email to VW but I'm not hopeful of their response.

I've been over the moon with the car to date and would certainly trade this in for a newer model if they'd give me a trade in that didn't reflect the light being on - has anyone tried this and if so what was the response?

Can anyone provide any help on where I stand with VW helping with the repairs if that is the line that I chose to go down?


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Avant

Bringing this thread up to the top again as a Touran owner has the same problem.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - mikeyb123

Hi - another golf owner with teh same issue.

56 plate 1.6 golf pluswith less that 36k on the clock. light has just come on with the codes 01435 and G201. Going to phone vw for a quote for proper diagnosis tomorrow :-(

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - mikeyb123

Hi All,

Just thought I'd post a update.

Went and got the diag test done - ABS pump faulty need a new one - £1109.32. I pointed out that this is a known case etc so the dealer apparently phoned customer services and I was told that there would be no contribution towards the cost as there was a non-VW stamp in the service book and also that the car was out of warranty period.

Not being terribly happy with this I phoned VW direct myself and after getting a case assigned, they called me back.

Now according to VW cust services the car does indeed have a full VW service history - as I pointed out to the dealer and, as such would qualify for the good will fund.

They have offered me 100% on the cost of the parts and 50% on the cost of the labour charges. So the car is booked in for next week to be fixed.

Whilst I'm more than happy with VW direct with their offer - Good job VW. I'm less than impressed with the dealer. It leaves me wondering if the dealer even bothered to call VW in the first place? and are they relying on us, joe public to bend over and take it?

So I guess the lesson here is to be reasonable in your conversations and don't believe a word your main s****** is telling you.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - lady vw owner

my 56 vw golf developed a fault last week when the esp light came on and wouldn't go off. It is 40 months old and has only done 36K. So i took it to the vw gaarge where i bought it from. They did the full diagnostic test, charged me £108 for the pleasure and told me the abs control unit was fautty and quoted me over 1200 pounds to fix it. In shock i decided to get another opinion and in my internet search came across this blog. As a consequence, i rang vw customer services the next day stating the problem and explaining that

i had a full service history with vw

had owned a previous vw car

had bought this before having my second child thinking that i'd be ok for 5 years odd.

and that i knew that this was a known fault to them quoting this site.

I asked for 100% help from their goodwill warranty scheme

the Dealership did forward the report to them and today i have been told that vw will pay 100% parts and 100% labour. I am delighted and must thank all of you who posted on here who gave me the confidence to take this up with VW.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Chazman

another to add to the list... My mother has a VW Golf Plus which developed this esp light issue a few weeks ago. It's just had it's diagnostic and lo and behold, needs the replacement (I don't yet have the fault codes).

Only £49.99 for the diagnostic which seems cheaper than others have quoted but they want £1100 for the repair... Its an 05 registered May 2005 originally, bought as an ex-demonstrator in Feb 2006 so is now 62 months old apparently, 2 months over the apparently 60 months the goodwill scheme covers. It's only done less than 15k (and was 3.5k when purchased).

Been offerred 30% labour by the dealer and 'possibly' to be matched only by 30% labour from VW, nothing on the part. Seems quite inadequate for an extremely low mileage, always serviced at the same dealer it was purchased at. If one could assume the fault would have occurred earlier if the mileage had been higher then it would have been within the 60 months...

Does anyone have any experience of :

1. Actually taking Sales of Goods Act action

2. Any statistics as to the prevalence of the fault and how this relates to other typical major faults etc.

3. Any other feedback with regard to other ways of assessing prevelance - e.g watchdog - looked at their site but can't see any summaries re this issue.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - dingo208

I have also joined the ESP problem club. I have a Touran 55 plate 63,000 miles - out of warrenty by 17 months. Local VW specialist (not main dealer) did last service so they are approaching VW. Will see what happens.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - squigglebob

I too have joined the club. 07 Golf 1.4 S : 5 months out of warranty. Dealer (without prompting :-) ) phoned to say that they had contacted VW and were awaiting a reply.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - squigglebob

Got the call : VW will pick up 100% parts and labour plus the diagnostic. Over the moon about this.

I know this is an "I'm alright Jack" type of post. But it's good for others to know that VW are still willing to look at this fault on out of warranty cars.

AUDI A3 ESP Light On Continuously - ademorris1979

I'm a fully signed up member of this unfortunate club. Have got an Audi A3 06 plate 50,000 miles on the clock. ESP light came on permanently on the dash about 3 weeks ago. Got it independently checked out (i don't trust my local Audi dealer after previous bad experiences) and was shocked when they said the ABS pump needed replacing and how much it would cost. Came home and began researching the fault code on the internet and then realised how common it was. Contacted the dealership who pleaded ignorance to the fault and still claim now they don't think it is a common fault.

Long story short, have been offered 50% goodwill from Audi UK/dealership beacause of my loyalty (all my servicing and MOT's done by Audi). Have rejected that quoting The Sale of Goods Act 1979 and buoyed by other peoples outcomes. Have been waiting nearly a week now. That says it all to me. Will post again when they can be bothered to contact me.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - wycombester

ESP light came on yesterday. Dismayed by the potential costs quoted in this forum. I'm just over one month out of warranty (07 plate with 40K miles on the clock) but am already battling to get them to fix the air conditioning compressor (another common problem it seems) under factory good will. That is a £700 quid plus job so for the ESP light problem to happen so soon afterwards is not good news. Made the mistake of getting the most recent service done at a local garage for convenience owing to it coinciding with a house move - this is making it that much harder to get good will. Won't be making this mistake again, but the writing is on the wall for this car.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - ollieo

Me too. Golf 56 FSI with 17k mileage.

Last serviced by a VW 'specialist' rather than 'authorised' dealer, who thankfully used VW parts.

Because of this, VAG offered 100% parts but only 50% labour for the ABS pump replacement. Final cost £143. I challenged the price with the dealer and VAG, but neither would budge, and although I've been hit lighter in the pocket than many, still aggrieved I'm paying anything at all for a design flaw.

Guessing if I'd followed the legal route, the cost of the beak would likely be more than I'd recoup.

Back to Citroen for me.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - AlanT

And another one to add to this sorry list! 56 plate golf 1.6 FSI 25K miles, 11 months out of warranty. Purchased new from local main dealer and serviced by them throughout. VAG have paid 100% parts and 50% labour leaving me with a bill for £164. I did suggest that the dealership might contribute something themselves - I've been with them for 20+ years - but they declined. Not happy with a bill of this size for something that's down to poor manufacture by VW in the first place.

I've owned every mark of golf back to the original Mk1 in 1978. This is my second MkV - I sent the first one back because of steering rack problems. The earlier marks were all trouble free. Golfs aren't what they used to be. I think its now time to look at other options ...

Edited by AlanT on 26/08/2010 at 17:10

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - forest4us

I've got the same problem on my 55 reg Golf.Have'nt diag that yet,but came accross a cheaper option(worth to look at):


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - SINSPEED

We offer a complete rebuild service but also, we custom-modify the original unit and bypass the internal pressure switch and fit our very own external pressure switches to these.. we've been doing them since November 2007 and never had one come back failed.

We've got all the part numbers on the shelf, ready for same day dispatch and currently, we offer a full removal & fitting service (with programming inclusive) for just £145!

Check out the article on our blog site and if you have any questions just call us on 0208 465 5275.

Edited by SINSPEED on 23/10/2010 at 21:13

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - hayfever64

We have two 1.4 TSI's. One is a 57 plate, this has done 55.000 miles, warranty expires FEB 2011. This car joined the "light on" club last week. Main dealer contacted and arranged for car to go in on 11th Nov. Kicked off with we know about this fault and the garage said yes but it normally happens on older models.they are going ahead and ordering in a pump, before they have done the dignostic so are obviously expecting it to be the common fault, part quoted as 1200.00. Car is within warranty but high mileage, all serviced with main dealer. there will not be a problem here because of the warranty.

The other car is another 1.4 TSI, May 08 registration, warranty expires May 11. Much lower mileage 20k. Do we get the second car checked for the make of unit as this was around the time the part manufactuer was changed, can we check this ourselves, if so how, and if it is a Teves, are there any grounds for getting it changed within the warranty period? We do not want it to fail further down the line and get stuffed with a huge bill.

We liked the car so much we bought the second one, mmmmm maybe not such a good idea?

When will VW own up and sort this out by a recall?

07 plate 2.0 TDI ESP Light On Continuously - globetrotter1

Joined the 'ESP light Club' 2 weeks ago on my 07 plate 43000 mile 2 litre TDI (6 months out of warranty but with full dealer service histiry). Got the fault code 01435 G201 confirmed by my local non-franchise and frendly garage! Took the car back to VW dealer who had to test to confirm fault. For the record, they charged £52.88 for the test and got VW to pay 100% of part and 70% of labour = £123.28. Much preferred paying £176.16 rather than over £1200! Felt that having the knowledge gained from these postings put me in a better negotiating position. Thanks to everyone who posted here!

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - davec1652
Also got the same prob with a 56 plate MkV 1.6 FSI. Was bought with <3k miles from dealer who serviced till end of w'tee. Been serviced by local garage with VW parts since. They detected the prob which was confirmed via VW-approved specialist. Now about 23k miles. Any view re chance of claiming via VAG?
06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - wytco0

ESP light came on on my MY06 R32 Golf MKV, I took it to VW in Norwich yesterday and today they rang up and said it needs a new Haldex ECU and a new Mechatronics ECU total cost £3030, they offer to pay 10% bringing the cost to £2740.

I am absolutely shocked by this my car has done 43,000 miles and has been serviced by VW.

Is there anything I can do to get more help from VW. I cant believe that failure of such expensive components is normal in a well looked after low mileage car.

Any help or advice gratefully received.

06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE
Buy a Toyota next time.

As a VAG customer I am appalled at the contempt which they seem to show for their customers, post sales. I believe much of this originates in M-K.

My own VAG vehicle has suffered no significant problems, but I am left in absolutely no doubt that my credit card would be comprehensively raped by them if I were to have problems with an "out of warranty" vehicle. Their refusal to admit to serious design shortcomings - some safety critical - is quite unbelievable.

I got away with it this time (Skoda Superb) - they're not getting another chance.


Edited by 659FBE on 25/11/2010 at 15:17

06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - Kewsea

Hmmm. I have to make a decision tomorrow on whether to buy a 57 plate Golf TDi with 31k on the clock (had it's only required service at a Peugeot dealership) or a 57 plate Kia Ce'ed 1.6 CRDi with 11k on the clock and another 4 years warranty.

I honestly dunno what to do. Golf seems a risk to me. even though it's a miles better car.

06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE

Why is there only one vehicle on your short list apart from the Golf?

There's a wide open field out there - and VAG would do well to realise that most of their more perceptive customers know that.


06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - Kewsea

Am aware of that but I want my next car to last me 5 years with no issues. I have had more than my fair share of bad luck including an abs pump on a Golf before, fuel pump on a focus and another focus with an incurable ECU fault. I love the Golf but it appears a risk whilst the Cee'd is a nice car, if lacking charisma, but with the warranty it's pretty bomb proof.

06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE

If your brief is 5 years of use "with no issues" then a mainstream Japanese product from the likes of Toyota or Honda is statistically by far the best option.

A VAG product will not give you the reliability you seek without attention from their less than perfect dealers (at vast cost) and a tier 2 Far Eastern product will not have the post-warranty life (and hence resale value) or the sophistication that you may be seeking.

In plain language, these cars are dogs once they're out of warranty and a major electronics failure will write them off. 5 years of being tied to a dealer will mean you've paid twice over for a much less good product.


06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - Kewsea
Looks like we'll agree to disagree on that one. In my experience, with MANY cars (Hondas, Fords, Toyotas, VW's, Vauxhalls) - the makes you cite as 'reliable' also incur inflated maintenance and repair costs. Besides, nothing in their current offering in my price range is remotely appealing or attractive as a reliable proposition. I have a limit I will pay for a car - the Ce'ed at that limit has more spec/less mileage/more warranty than any of the others.

It's like this. The Ce'ed has 4.5 yrs left on it's warranty - trouble free I'd guess with only 10k on the clock at point of purchase and anticipated mileage of 8k a year. Servicing costs no greater than any other main dealer to maintain warranty. After 4.5 yrs (ish) I say goodbye to it.

If I have learned one thing from my recent experiences and poor run of luck it's that cars are merely something to get you from A to B. If it does this, as I expect, reliably, safely and cheaply then I have no interest in the notion that it may be a 'South Korean Dog'. I don't care as all any vehicle does is lose you money and I have lost enough.

It works for me. Not me for it.

Anyway. I bought it today.
06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - calb

Hi - new user but wanted to share my experience.....

Just bought a Seat Leon from the auction - risky I know!! Anyway on the way home the ESP light came on.... thought nothing of it until I saw the postings on google - OMG!! Contacted the dealer who asked us to bring it in for diagnostic test at £85!!! They also said the only good will they would show was if the car was bought from new, had under 65k on the clock and if it had all the stamps in - the car was an ex lease so it had all bar one of the stamps from a dealer but with 75k on the clock and 4 years 2 months old it was not likely!!

Found a independent garage in Huddersfield called IVS (Independent Volkswagen Specialist) - 07719 236609 and gave them a call this morning - they booked it in for diagnostic for £25. We got there (11am) and the dreaded fault was found. However he told us that there was a new piece of kit which could be bought and fitted for £350. We booked it in then and there and also had the MOT done. The total bill came to £370 (cheaper then expected) and the car was ready by 4pm.

Not exactly thrilled about paying for a known fault but knowing we would have a epic fight on our hands with Seat and knowing that we would have to prob pay something for the privilege of them ripping us off I would rather give my money to an independent garage.

Being a woman I am always concerned about mechanics ripping me off (sorry to the honest mechanics out there), however I would thoroughly recommend this garage :)

It does pay to shop around and for anyone with a little car knowledge apparently the part can be bought and replaced at home.

06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - Monti

Hi all

I am the latest addition to this problem. I have a Golf plus 2006 version with 51k miles, and same issue - ESP light always on. Took it to VW Citigate, but told there is no goodwill on the cost (quoted at £1300) as the car was not serviced by VW.

I have had the car serviced regularly, albeit with other professional garages using genuine VW parts.

Has anyone else managed to get any goodwill for this problem from VW despite not servicing the car there? From the posts, it seems like a recurring issue regardless of age or who services the car. Also, is it worth persuing the matter in small claims court? Finally, are there any risks in continuing to drive with the current problem?

Any advice would be much much appreciated as the cost is too prohibitive for me at the moment.

Thanks so much.

06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - GrahamDutton

I am having the same problem - I have a Golf Plus 2006 with 29k miles.

Local VW garage said they could not offer goodwill discount as I had not had is serviced by VW.

I contacted VW customer services and a case was created. Today they rang back and said they could not offer me any goodwill as car is 2 months out of warranty. 60 months is gaurantee period they work off.

I was quoted £490 to fix the problem - This was for an ABS repair kit - were you quoted to replace the full ABS pump?

I am now stuck and dont know what to do next - I cannot afford to pay for the car to be fixed.

Any advice would be great.

Cheers Graham

06 MKV Golf R32 ESP Light On Continuously - SophieT86

Similarly joined the ESP club last week when the light came on out of the blue - 55 MKV Golf, 35,000 miles.

Similar to Graham my local VW are not willing to offer any goodwill as I have had my car serivced at an independent garage since it was purchased. It's under 6 years old (just) - what can I do? Has anyone had success going to the small claims court? Can anyone recommend some help?

Reading others' posts I'm reluctant to have VW fix it for £1300+, but can't justify paying £500 at a local garage either.

Thank you


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - graham6159

Hi - new user but wanted to share my experience.....my ESP light on my 04 golf came on did the diagnosis which showed up as the ABS pump fault. went on the internet and found people paying over £1000 found a garage called Volksmaster in Oldham Manchester that will fix it for £325 all in This includes the diagnostic check, removal and refitting, repair of the pump and a brake fluid change + 2 years warranty I would thoroughly recommend this garage top job
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - greenie

I've just joined the ESP club.

When put through diagnostics it showed there was a problem with the ABS unit, and said it would need replacing, at a cost of about £1000 (how can this cost be so different from one place to another??!!).

My car is well out of warranty (5 years old, 38,000 on the clock), but I made it clear to them that I knew VW knew about this fault and would not be willing to pay anything.

The garage contacted head office for me.

Fortunately, because I have full sevice history with VW they have agreed to give me a 100% goodwill gesture. Result.

Good luck to you all, keep persisting, even if you don't get it serviced with them, they should at least give you some goodwill gesture as this is obviously a very big problem.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Col Mayers

I've also just become a reluctant member of the ESP light-always-on club. I've got an 05 VW Golf TDI, it's done 75k miles, so I think I'm a bit luckier than others reading the many posts above that it's lasted so long.

Anyway, I've had a diagnostics test done at my local VW garage and it's the same problem as everyone else with the ABS unit. I've been offered a repair kit with 20% discount (10% from garage, 10% from VW), £374 fitted.

Having already read the other posts above, I thought this wasn't too bad to get it sorted, but I was warned by the garage that the repair kit might not fix the problem. They have had an odd one that makes the car completely undriveable as it loses any pressure in the brakes. The brake pedal goes slowly to the floor, and stays there! (but the ESP light error disappears from the dash)

The only way to then fix it is to completely replace the unit. BUT.. you still have to pay for the repair kit! (despite it not working). I appreciate the honesty from the garage but it seems unreasonable to ask people to choose if they want to gamble on a reapair kit or shell out £1k+ for a new ABS unit.

So I phoned VW head office myself today and asked if a guarantee could be offered, that if the repair kit doesn't work then I won't have to pay for it (sounds fair to me, after all I'm paying for a faulty part that VW should've sorted out themselves when they saw how many people were having the same problem).

They're passing the query to a customer service advisor and they'll get back to me within 7 days.

ps. I got my Golf when it was only 10 months old, from a VW garage and it's got the full service history from VW dealers. VW said they don't normally offer anything when it's over 5yrs old, but my garage offered 10% so they matched it.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - jaycurrim

I've just had my ESP light come on and after researching on here I'm not happy. Booked in to the local VW dealer to diagnose.

I bought the car ('06 TDI with full VWSH) less than 4 months ago from a dealer (non-VW) with 38k now has 41k.

Now as the car was bought less than 6 months ago I'm assuming that as it is a known fault that section 48A of the Sale of Goods Act 1979 will apply. Has anyone had any experience under this part of the Act (or others - I see someone posted about "durability of safety features" being an element of the Act).

I'm determined not to pay anything towards this fault as a) I should be covered by the SoGA and b) It is a known fault and therefore the dealer or VW should take responsibility - optimistic to say the least I know :-)

I will re-post with an update when I've 'discussed' the matter with VW and the dealership!

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - jaycurrim

Went into local VW dealer (Solihull nr Birmingham) yesterday and they diagnosed ABS fault and that it required an ABS repair kit - £644.90 fitted inc VAT!

The service advisor then asked me if I had VWSH, which the car does - full from purchase by previous owners. She then advised me that as it was a known fault, VW do give a contribution towards the work based on 3 factors: VW service history; age (up to 6 years) and mileage (up to 100k).

As my car has FVWSH, is under 6 years and under 100k miles I was over the moon when they told me that they would give me a 100% contribution towards the work AND I did not have to pay the diagnosis fee (£85) thus giving me a £730 saving (and they even replaced a bulb that had gone for free!).

I must say I was impressed with the dealer - they didn't try to wriggle out of anything and were very helpful. Hopefully this won't degenerate into another fault e.g. casuing brake pressure loss (as a previous message highlighted) - meaning a complete unit replacement but I will be highlighting this to the dealer and seeking a guarantee of some kind.

I think the three factors I mentioned above each give a percentage contribution towards the work so even if your vehicle is over 6 years or only partial VWSH or over 100k mileage I still think it's worth pushing them for some contribution.

Hope this message helps.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - cws

The previous message is good news, however, essentially VAG are blackmailing owners in to only honouring warranties if you continually spend money with them. But this is old news........

I remember being told by the QA manager of a global car parts manufacturer that if a part supplied by a sub-contractor to a vehicle manufacturer (ie in this case Teves supplying the ABS units to VW) is found to be faulty, then the regular contract the supplier signed makes the supplier liable for the replacement units, plus other costs on top of that. So in reality VAG aren't displaying that much goodwill after all - because they'll be recouping their costs from the supplier of the faulty part.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - lastyboy

I may be a little biased but i will stick my oar in to this.

These pumps can be repair and i find the bill of nearly £600 to fit the repair kit as extortionate. The repair kit is only about £180 and about 2 hours labour. Quite an easy job. Sure a good garage could do this job for about £300.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - willjoel

Thought I would let people Know, I have a 2007 golf tdi 105 match with 73,000 on clock, 3 vw services and 1 independant. ESP light came on yesterday took it to independant dealer for diagnostic and was told it was the dreaded ABS pump failure, was quoted £452. After reading discussions on here I thought a call to VW customer services on 0800 0833 920 was worth a try. I told them about problem and that it appeared to be a common fault and without to much persuasion as a good will gesture they are going to foot 100% of the bill, result. Booked in for next tuesday will let you know how I get on.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - mrsduck22


I have a 2007 VW Golf 1.6 FSI S 60K and I too joined the ESP club several months ago, and at the time, just presumed it was a faulty warning light as driving was 'normal' and it didn't feel/sound any different. Eventually went to my local independent garage for an MOT, who told me my ABS pump was faulty and that they fit a lot of pumps, so it wasn't uncommon for this to be replaced??! Less than unimpressed, I came home, and thankfully came across this site. I called VW customer service, explained my problem and told me to book the car in at my local VW garage and they would foot 100% of the bill. (£650.00!!). If it hadn't of been for this site, I would have, without a doubt paid to replace the pump. There was a slight issue at my local VW garage, whereby they did say the part wasn't under 'factory recall', and I would have to make a claim to VW, however after I said that VW C.S had agreed to pay, they also agreed and said 'they'd got it wrong'. (Personally I think they were trying to pull a fast one). I also found out that if the car had been over 6 years old, or done 100,000 miles, I wouldn't have been covered.

So cheers to everyone who posted, you've saved me a small fortune!!

P.S Just makes you wonder how many golf owners out there have paid to have the pump replaced, when they didn't have to??!

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - meltonby

This is the same for my 05 plate Touran. It came on at 103K miles and VW refused to contribute or even acknowledge it was a common fault. It is now (from 1.4.12) an MOT failure even though it has passed 2 MOTs inc rolling road tests with the light on. Thanks for the advice above I'll shop around for a fix before next MOT is due.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Collos25

So for nearly three years you have been driving around with what could be faulty brakes.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - roscoedog

Thanks Guys,

I've just left my 56 reg Golf in for a service today and I thought the ESP Light coming up on the dashboard could be easily fixed. The independent local garage told me it was going to be £450-ish for the repair (part and labour). I called VW customer services and was transferred to my local VW dealer who told me I'd have to book the car in for a diagnostics check at £54 to determine the fault......even though I insisted I knew what the fault was. Then I'd need to deal with VW customer services to be reimbursed with the cost of the repair. What a palaver.......but I suppose I shouldn't be complaining as VW customer services have agreed to reimburse me as the car is under 6 yrs old.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Leighton

I have a simular issue with my A3 55 Reg was first told that it was probably a sensor after taking it to an independant VW/Audi sepecialist i'm told that there is a fault on the electric module of the unit , The good news is that aparently I dont have have the whole unit changed and it will only cost me about £420 bad news for me is after reading some of the above i'm outside of the 6 year cut off a bit gutted cause i have been driving it round for a while and if i'd looked into it when it first came on i was inside the 6 years :(. Might still try my luck with audi though they can only say no cant they. After reading many of these posts and alot of others else where it amazed me how the VW group could have let this go on for so long it seems that abs units have been an issue as far back as the 90's

Edited by Leighton on 13/04/2012 at 15:09

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - zepparella


Just want to start by thanking everyone over the past few years who have posted their experiences in dealing with VW over this problem as it was the blueprint to my resolution. The dreaded ESP light came on continously last week so called the National VW Customer Service Dept who advised I take a diagnostic test at nearest dealer which is VW Liverpool. Copy and pasted two A4 sheets of the positive comments on this thread to let them know that I was aware of this 'known fault ' when I made a booking for diagonostic test. Took our 54 reg Golf to dealer who advised the diagnostic test would cost of £48. Left HJ articles about this topic on passenger seat so mechanics would realise I knew the solution to the underlying problem. Several hours later I was informed that they had detected an ABS fault. As the car is 9 years old with 65K, I was concerned that our Golf might not meet the VW requirements for a goodwill gesture reimbursement as previous posters have suggested. Anyhow, I was told the ESP light fix would be fully met by Volkswagon under warranty and that I would not have to pay anything towards the ABS repair or for the diagnostic test. Even though last service was independent, no service history details were required. Never received any documentation for the repair so unsure of current prevailing cost. Just elated to have escaped a big bill. Hope this helps anyone who is confronted with this scenario in the future.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - willjoel


Just an update on the E.S.P light issue, I have had the ABS pump repaired at a VW main dealer with the bill footed by VW, didnt even have to pay for the diagnostic check. Thanks to all the posters on here for the info. If you have this problem try ringing Vw customer services, its worth a call

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - scottgreilly
Vw jetta ESP 06.

After seeing Dom on the beeb I decided to challenge vw (also mot due..!)

I called customer service and they were very helpfull. They told me to book it in for a diagnostic check, if it was the common fault then they would repair the ESP fault for FREE even though I never serviced the car with vw. 

The diagnostic check is £80, I'm not happy paying it but hey, I'll argue that after the repair. 

So as I write I'm in the dealership waiting on the repair (3 or 4 hour job). 

My car is also a few days away from the 6 year warranty so I've just scraped it... 

I'll update on the quality of the replacement..... 
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - vwheid

Hi I believe Iam probably amongst todays new subscribers to the esp light entertainment club, I recently became the proud owner of a 55 plate 06 model 1.4 golf and whilst I was suspicious of the light being on when I bought the car I didnt think too much of it as during the test drive the breaks where spot on and very responsive......anyway today looking up ebay for mats I came across a kit for the unknown to myself common fault as posted above by everyone the more I read the more I could have used one of those mats for my seat as I have just passed the six year old mark and also have broken the mentioned 100k mile marker too, not 2 sure about service issues as not looked at book to check if stamps from official or not anyway....After taking the kind advice of HJ and some other worrying panickers and called VW HQ 0800 0833 920 customer services mentioning my alarm at seeing how many people where having this problem on this site and how I should go about things I can honestly say that I was treated very well and assured that if I take my car to a local dealership which was duly arranged by the helpful customer services lady whilst I was on the phone then given a reference number and that if I have the diagnostic check done and it turns out to be the fault that they are currently dealing with it will be free as will be the diagnostic test so Ive since been called and emailed by local Edinburgh Gorgie Road Western dealer to confirm next thursday appointment. I will update next week and thanks again to all above.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - vwheid

Hi I believe Iam probably amongst todays new subscribers to the esp light entertainment club, I recently became the proud owner of a 55 plate 06 model 1.4 golf and whilst I was suspicious of the light being on when I bought the car I didnt think too much of it as during the test drive the breaks where spot on and very responsive......anyway today looking up ebay for mats I came across a kit for the unknown to myself common fault as posted above by everyone the more I read the more I could have used one of those mats for my seat as I have just passed the six year old mark and also have broken the mentioned 100k mile marker too, not 2 sure about service issues as not looked at book to check if stamps from official or not anyway....After taking the kind advice of HJ and some other worrying panickers and called VW HQ 0800 0833 920 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 0800 0833 920 end_of_the_skype_highlighting customer services mentioning my alarm at seeing how many people where having this problem on this site and how I should go about things I can honestly say that I was treated very well and assured that if I take my car to a local dealership which was duly arranged by the helpful customer services lady whilst I was on the phone then given a reference number and that if I have the diagnostic check done and it turns out to be the fault that they are currently dealing with it will be free as will be the diagnostic test so Ive since been called and emailed by local Edinburgh Gorgie Road Western dealer to confirm next thursday appointment. I will update next week and thanks again to all above. Just to update everyone that my problem has now been corrected by the above mentioned garage last week, As previously mentioned after arrangement via VW HQ on the above number I am now very releived at this and must thank all from the above threads, HJ etc and also to VW HQ and the dealership western VW in Gorgie Road Edinburgh for all their help good luck to all who have this problem.Ta.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Paulofoo


ESP warning light came on last Monday 21 May 2012 on a straight bit of B-road, normal speed and driving on a fine dry day. It refused to go away. Car's a 2007 mk5 Golf GTI manual with 32k. Tested ABS on gravel yard and it still worked fine with the fault showing.

Went in to the local dealership today as I happened to have a 'Free Health Check' booked in, so didn’t have to pay for any diagnostics. Mentioned the ESP light was on and they came back advising ABS unit fault and they can fix it same afternoon no problem. No bill, fixed free of charge. They advised that it's a common problem but hadn't warranted a recall. I guess given the prevalence of the fault they've finally bit the bullet and repair free of charge. Total time about 3 hours including diagnostics and repair (and car wash!)

I had a full VW service history but they didn’t ask to see it. The car wasn't bought from VW dealership. Item appears on the service ticket as 'ABS brake pressure sensor faulty - repair kit required'..'£475.28' - though fixed free of charge as I say.

Thanks to everyone who's posted previously - I took a copy of this thread in with me just in case. But glad to say I didn’t need it. Thanks to HJ and all the people who've toiled with this - otherwise I expect I'd have a large hole in my pocket!


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - GarethShaw

Hi, My ESP light came on 2 weeks ago (56 Reg Golf, 55,000 miles). I took it to the local garage who plugged in the computer which identified the switch fault, and only this fault. As this was the case I contacted VW who said I should take it to a dealer who would run the diagnostic and replace the switch if this was the issue.

I have been told today that a 2nd fault has been identified with the ASB pump and that this would not be covered by VW. The pump did not show up on the first diagnostic. From reading earlier posts to repair the switch do you not have to replace the pump? Has anyone else had the same issue?


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - northumbrian

Following on from the previous note of thanks above, can I add my own.

The ESP warning light came on in the wife's 07 mk5 Golf 1.6 FSI (53K) as she was driving down the A1 last Monday, 29th May, panic ensued etc. I calmed her down and had a look at the car that night and then started looking at the internet and eventually came across this thread, after a quick phone call to VW customer service team on Thursday (VW customer service advisor Emma was very helpful) and the car was booked in to VW Benfield at the Silverlink, North Tyneside for today.

I dropped the car off and explained the problem mentioned this website and that this seemed to be a common fault etc and gave them the case reference number from the customer service team. I picked the car up tonight washed, hoovered and was presented with a service invoice for an "ABS Control Unit Replacement" at no cost to myself as a goodwill gesture from VW. As you can imagine I'm now a very, very happy customer.

We have had three Golfs now and this is the first free thing I have ever had from VW !! According to the dealer this is a known fault with RHD MK5 Golfs only, due to the units positioning on thje car and is not covered by a general safety recall but is being done as a gesture of goodwill for cars that present the right fault code within certain criteria ie age, mileage etc.

My local garage, not the main VW dealer, has seen loads of these faults, and replaced quite a few units for VW owners who are frightened off visiting VW garages by potential high main dealer charges for replacement parts/labour. He's a decent, honest local mechanic and is now going to suggest they contact VW customer service directly in the first instance to see if they can get any satisfaction/goodwill before he gets his spanners out in future.

Apologies for being a bit long winded but many thanks to all those that have toiled before on this issue, I'm happy, the wife is delighted and VW may get some repeat business in the future.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - JonnyGolf

Just to add to this discussion...I have Mk5 Golf GT TDI (55 plate 60k miles) which showed this ESP light "feature" fault back in Feb 2012. When I first spoke to VW UK they were less than helpful and said that they wouldn't offer any goodwill after doing the diagnostics. I had left it until recently without repair and thought I'd give it another go.

I rang them again last week and they advised that if I took it back in for another diagnostics (they didn't keep the details from back in February) then the repair would be free if it came up with 1 of 3 fault codes (G201 is one of those codes, not sure of the other 2).

They have confirmed this afternoon that they will be performing the repair free of charge.

It would seem their policy on age/milage has significantly changed over the last few months and anyone experiencing this problem should ring customer services and open a case with them....hope this helps.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - dieselweazle

Just to add to the frayI had an 06 plate VW Touran 2 TDI Sport as company car from new and at 2 years old and 80k miles,in 2008, I got the same thing happen. I left the fleet company to argue the 2 grand bill for parts and labour with VW as it was over the 60 k mile warranty limit

Remember seeing loads of posts on it at the time

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - hamsie
My 55 plate Golf plus joined the ESP club 2 weeks ago. Today the car went into Peter Cooper Volkswagon for a diagnostic check with the result of Volkswagon deciding to repair the fault at no cost.
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - Fanta

My VW (56 plate) Golf GT TDI (69K miles) has just fallen fowl of the ESP light issue.

Thankfully, I began reading this thread and it has helped alot so thanks.

I have therefore just called VW Customer Servs on 0800 0833 920 and they confirmed that this sounds like a 'known fault' and if I book my motor in with them then should the issue be diagnosed as the known fault, they would pay for the diagnostic test and the repair in full. No questions asked.

If the results are not the known fault then I would have to foot the bill for the diagnostic test (£59.95 inc VAT at VW garage in Rotherham, S66 2JL). The customer services department also gave me a reference for the call which was quite reassuring as they must clearly log my call and this would allow me to refer back to this if I have any issues. I will also receive a call within 14 working days from them to see if the issue has been resolved.

The lady I spoke to at the Rotherham dealership confirmed that they are looking for the G201 sensor issue (I have no idea but this might be helpful for some of you out there?).

Lets hope it is this known fault and VW stand by their verbal agreement to foot 100% of the bill. I will let you know how I get on.

Good luck to all

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - roadwalker

I am in a similar situation as the ESP light came on two days ago on my (57 plate) Golf TSI 1.4 with 36K miles.

This Thread has been so informative and I would like to thank those that have taken time to post thier experiences over this known problem.

Have arranged for the garage that I purchased it from and also the necessary servicings that were done with to resolve this known problem but of course must await the necessary diagnostic check to ensure that it fulfils the G201 sensor issue problem ensuring that it will be paid for by VW.

The car is booked in on the 7th Sept and i will keep you posted.

I am still perplexed as to why VW have not resolved this long term problem.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - scunneredgolfdriver
Have just had my golf fixed by a reputable and highly recommended mechanic who replaced the abs pump. Since this, there is a lot of travel in my brake pedal. Has anyine else had a similar experience and how have you fixed it?
05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - 659FBE

Your reputable and .... mechanic has not followed the correct procedure for bleeding the brakes.

On these vehicles you need VAGCOM or its update to place the ABS system into "open valve" mode in order to bleed the brakes properly. Traditional methods won't work as an air bubble in the valve block introduced on replacement will otherwise remain stuck there.

This is the reason for your long brake pedal travel.


05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - roadwalker

It was proved that my problem was indeed the 201 Sensor and tomorrow the car goes in the garage for a replacement paid for by VW, good news too.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - roadwalker

Job carried out today and pleased with the garages overall assistance. Supplied a car for the day without incurring a cost to myself. In addition the car was valetted and washed, thats what you call service.

05 1.6 ESP Light On Continuously - eljay222


Another successful free of charge fix here (07 Golf, 45,000 miles, VW service history). Rang customer service first but no quibbles from them or Nottingham dealership.

Thanks soooo much to everyone who contributed to this thread and those who pushed VW to change their policy.



07 Golf Plus 1.9D ESP Light On Continuously - hendersonj501

Thank you to everyone who has posted on this topic. It put me in the right frame of mind when I took my Golf Plus to our local VW dealer with this problem. Glad to report that the garage told me when I booked the car in that if it was the ABS pump problem then it would be replaced free of charge. Hey Presto that was what happened. Cannot fault Heritage of Bristol for their advice and service. Pity it happened in the first place but turned out to be relatively minor inconvenience which didn't empty my wallet

07 Golf Plus 1.9D ESP Light On Continuously - reilly

Just another thank you post. Just had the necessary repairs carried out free of charge at Isaac Agnew Belfast on a 2006 VW Golf, 33k miles, without a VW service history. Contacted VW Customer services on the number provided above, they were more than helpful, provided a reference number and told me how to proceed. Isaac Agnew carried out the diagnostics, then carried out all repairs and gave the car a good clean.

Thanks again folks.

09 Mark 6 Golf 1.6D ESP Light On Continuously - johnmkubwa

I have just joined the ESP light on Club. At 27,000 miles after starting my Mark 6 Golfthe ESP/ABS and Brakelight stayed on continuously. Luckily, the car was just in warranty.

The garage have changed a brake swaitch and the ABS control unit; now the engine will not start. Apparently the new ABS unit will not 'code' to the ECU. Despite liaising with the VW factory my local dealer has been unable to fix the problem.

It has been 10 days since they started work and I am concerned that VAG have been unable to fix this problem. Anyone else experiencing this problem or with advice on how to proceed?


09 Mark 6 Golf 1.6D ESP Light On Continuously - johnmkubwa

Another week has passed and the fault has not been fixed, The factory sent out another ABS control unit but the ESP light stays on and the unit cannot be 'coded'.

The chances of two new units being faulty must be very low. It seems to me that the problem is how the unit is connected to the car. As the problem started just after a wet spell of weather I wonder if it might be a damp connection or earth.

Any technical people out there with advice or thoughts? If so please comment.


P.S. VW have kindly arranged a nice Passat to cover my car-gap


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