Someone else posted the solution I am about to give in an earlier posting on this subject. But here goes.
I have the same problem for a week, but still have not taken my 2000 Jetta to the dealer. I called the service center one day and the manager gave me this solution, which lets you override the problem.
Start with the car off.
Turn the ignition key just a wee bit, so that only the radio comes on (if you have a factory radio) but the gas level meter or lights do not come on. This is a very slight turn. It shoudl allow you to put the gear in Neutraul (N).
Turn the ignition back off.
Now's the tricky part.
With your foot on the brake pedal, you have to turn the ignition on and AT THE SAME TIME crank the gear into drive. Of course, please have your foot on the brake!
I have seem several posts that say this problem is with a switch in teh transmission. A defective brake light can also cause this problem, believe it or not, so check to see that your brake lights work. Then again, I've had broken brake lights and this did not happen.
Hope this helps.
Wednesday, August 30th, 2006 AT 11:18 AM