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Cold test : FAILED

38267 Views 31 Replies 23 Participants Last post by  KarstGeo
It's really cold in Canada those days. It was -23 C ( -10 Farhenheit) north of Montreal this morning and my Atlas (v6 4motion) failed to start. The battery simply couldn't start the engine. I had to get a boost from my stepbrother Ford F-150 (you can easily see the smile on his face).
This is not normal. My Atlas has less the 7 000 miles. It's a new car. My dealer could only schedule an appointement on January 5th. Until then I am stuck with an unreliable car, always fearing that it won't start during this cold wave that will last and few more days.
The battery failed me before two weeks ago, for no apparent reason, when the temperature wasn't so hard (like 14 F / -10C). Combined with the strong smell of gaz after ignition during cold morning, I feel the Atlas is not a great winter car. I am not happy.
Anyone experienced something similar?
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Remote starting in cold 3 times or more has left the cabin with an extremely strong smell of gasoline. Dealer is inspecting it today. If they can't find the problem it will be escalated to VW Canada immediately. Stay tuned;)
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Also, battery has already been replaced. CAA has told me that they've seen several Atlas's with bad batteries. My dealership was awesome as they replaced the battery no questions asked. No more problem.
My 2018 with 6500 km wouldn't start, two days earlier gave a low voltage message. Road side said 12-18 hours for a boost, got it to the dealer, 7-10 business days to get a battery. Funny thing is, next morning, I am at the Post Office and one is getting boosted in the parking lot. But a comment on Twitter, other owner is stuck in the maritimes with the same problem. I think it is more than a battery.
I had my battery replaced for "a bad cell" at 1300km! But I'm still getting an 'auto start-stop' error. Not really impressed so far but hoping things will get better as I like everything (except the reliability) about this vehicle
Same thing happen to me yesterday, battery just died with only 10,000km on it. This does sound like a battery issue, more of a electrical draw/ alternator design issue.
They had this problem with the Touareg's in 2004 and all the first year models needed new main harnesses. I think this is bigger than just a bad battery, weak charging system, inadequate sized battery, combined with cold weather. Too many cases to just be batteries, there are only a few battery manufactures world wide and if the supply to VW was this poor, they would be out of business. Sounds more like a draw/ charging issue.
The right battery?

My dealer recognized that there is something wrong with my battery. He will change it as soon as he can get his hands on a new one. Problem is, he can't find one.
Despite telling me, prior to my visit, that he could always grab one out of one of the Atlas he has in stock, it seem that my very specific battery model is nowhere to be found in his inventory. Hum... I own a trendline 4motion, a very common model.
He says my battery is a 000915105FC model, which, after some research, is the model for Golf R and Audi S3, both cars with engine and spec very different from my Atlas.

I fear I had the wrong battery model to start with and installing the same battery will lead to the same results (battery failure after 12 000km).

Can anyone tell me the battery model on their Atlas?
I have a Trendline as well, honestly, I think there is more to this than just a battery. I think VW Canada is having problems across the whole line and they aren't saying anything yet because they don't have a fix. When I questioned the service manager, he got very defensive.
We are dealing with a similar experience! Fuel smell when starting the car in colder temperatures. Found leaking O ring on injector and leaking high pressure fuel pump. Replaced both and hoped problem was solved. A few days later, started the car and got a a very strong fuel smell. Invoking lemon law and hoping for a buy back. How can you drive a car that smells of fuel? Very serious safety issue.
We didn't get the gas smell however we just got our new 2018 Highline Atlas 3.6 Dec 29 and I had to take it back in, 2 days later. It was also quite cold and I had the same problems that others had:
1. Start/Stop was inoperative,
2. Check Engine light on and
3. Remote starter not working.
Not very happy when it was only a few days old. VW Canada says they are looking into the issue and not to use the Block Heater until further notice. It only has about 200 km's on it...
Dropped ours off on the 29th, still don't have it back. Almost no communication from the dealer and they get very defensive when I even ask the smallest question.

Disappointed and frustrated.
Oh man all this issues!

So far I haven't had any gas smell issues BUT...this morning outside temp around -23 in Sask. Block heater is plugged in..
1. Remote start not working
2. Check engine light on
3. Start/stop error
4. Rad cooling fan turned on soon as I manually started the SUV

Taking it in on Jan 26th...fingers crossed

Also...they just fixed my cabin heater motor which would not blow hot air. I have a feeling a recall for this issue and many others will be coming soon.
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Same thing happened with mine. We had a real cold spell in NJ and auto start/stop stopped working. Brought the atlas in for a service campaign on tightening noisy front joint rod nuts and told dealer about sart/stop issue and faults came back with a bad battery and needed 2 weeks for new one to come from Germany. They are letting me keep the loaner atlas they gave me so can't complain but I don't think it's just the battery either with this many cases. Unless they simply undersized it for what the vehicle needs. Unfortunately, we'll have to expect some 1st year model issues but hopefully they won't be that bad and they'll work them out.
I have a 2018, SEL with 1300 miles. Check engine light came on, auto start stop error. Engine started fine. Taking it in tomorrow morning. Hopefully they have the parts to fix it or else I am demanding a loaner.
Hi Mveby, can you elaborate on the "a service campaign on tightening noisy front joint rod nuts". My VW Altas only has 800 miles and I've started hearing a clunking / creaking sound at low speed on mild bumps. Sounds like the suspension. I'm hearing it from the front end, passenger side. My guess is it's the same problem you had. Any info on this service campaign would be great. Thanks!
Same Battery Problem and more

Bought my Atlas in July 2017, had the same issue during cold weather in NJ for almost two months. The battery would drain and I would need to jump start truck. Worse yet, when going slow, a few miles an hour, the entire electrical system shut off and needed a jump on highway. Scary! I bought a portable jump system so I could do it on my own in an emergency and have used it three times with this vehicle!! Would recommend just for your own safety anyway to get one....was really a life saver when I need it. Worth the $50 to keep in trunk.

Now at dealership waiting on battery to be replaced. 5-7 days supposedly before I get it back. I agree with other, this is more than battery issue, the battery just drains out on cold days. Something else is going on, alternator issue? They are also fixing recall issues.

Anyone have problem with getting gas tank filled and then getting an error when trying to start up after? When this happened instead of getting some type of engine error alone, it told me my front light was out!!

Also, anyone have problem when turning wheel fully to left, I have a grinding feeling when I do but not to the right? Some interesting issues with this truck!!

This truck also guzzles gas!
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Our Atlas SEL4Motion has 6,000 miles. Once a month or so the vehicle won’t start. We try a sequence of things to get it to start but after letting it be for 10 minutes or so the vehicle will finally start. The backup cameras blackout sometimes too.

We took it to VW several times and they can’t duplicate the problem. They have asked for us to record the problem on our phones which we have done. They returned our vehicle with an apology and that’s it. Still intermittently have the problem with absolutely no solution.
Yikes , and yikes!! Please keep us updated.

ND/Canada birder here, we get very cold. I haven’t had a problem yet but I’ve only had it for 1 week. That fuel smell problem really concerns me. As it sounds a psi build up is happening and the safety pressure seals are failing.

Could easily be bad batch of seals.
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