Volkswagen and Audi are reportedly recalling 16,000 new vehicles due to transmission problems causing them to lose power or completely stall.
Government officials have been investigating the problem since July 17, ABC News' "Good Morning America" reports. The affected vehicles utilize a new type of transmission called a direct shift gearbox (DSG), and in some cases, have stranded motorists amid fast-moving traffic.
"You're in motion, but all of a sudden you don't have any acceleration," said Lisa Toler, of California. "The gas wouldn't work."
Clarence Ditlow, of the nonprofit Center for Auto Safety, said the problem is a "classic" safety hazard.
"Consumers are being stranded on freeways," Ditlow said. "It's only a matter of time before we have consumers being killed."
Volkswagen says it has not received any reports of injuries or deaths. In a joint statement to "Good Morning America," Volkswagen and Audi said the problem is caused by faulty temperature sensors, affecting 13,500 Volkswagen models and 2,500 Audi models.
"We are confident that the temperature sensor is the cause of this safety issue," the statement read.