4 Reasons Why VW “Parkpilot is Currently Not Available”

Driving your newly acquired VW Atlas Cross Sport along the notoriously dangerous McDowell Rd, a strange message popped up. It is a ‘Parkpilot is currently not available’ error on your car’s instrument cluster. You racked your brain; surfed the internet for an answer; called a friend, but no clear response came up. You keep wondering, ‘what does this message mean? 

I know you’re at your wits’ end, but don’t worry. I’ve researched what issues cause the “Parkpilot is Currently Not Available” warning sign. I also took time to explain the fixes to the possible issues. 

What Park Pilot Means and How it Works

Park Pilot is a feature in your VW automobiles that helps you drive in and park safely in a parking space. Otherwise called Pilot Distance Control, the park pilot warns you of how much space you have behind or in front as you’re parking. 

What’s more, the system features up to six shrill sensors. These ultrasonic sensors are located in the rear or front bumper of your vehicle. The sensors blend well with the bumper and most times are painted in the color of your car. You may hardly see the sensors because of their compactness.

A message pops up on the display as you drive your car in reverse mode once there’s an issue. The park pilot receives audible signals from the park pilot sensors. The system sends you an alert, telling you that you’re too close to a car, object, or person. The sound of park pilot sound beeps higher as you get closer to the potentially damaging object.   

Furthermore, the park pilot system is built with an emergency maneuver braking system that automatically applies braking force. It is integrated into the park pilot to help reduce damage or injuries resulting from a collision. At best, maneuver braking can prevent collision with stationary objects, cars, or persons.     

Why is the Park pilot System Not Available?  

There are a few reasons the ‘park pilot is currently not available’ warning message can pop up on your VW dash. When this happens, it indicates that you need to be careful and watchful when trying to park. You can’t speed in reverse gear when parking until you have resolved the park pilot issue. 

Failed sensors

If you notice the ‘parkpilot is currently not available’ warning, the first suspect is a failed sensor. Interestingly, the park pilot system features six high-pitched sensors. They help monitor and cover up to 50 inches (about 5 feet) behind or in front of your car. 

However, when any of the sensors get damaged or dirty, you’ll see the ‘parkpilot is currently unavailable’ message. The sensors can go bad if it’s clogged by water, snow, ice, debris, dirt, or grime-like substance.  

The thing to do is to replace the bad sensor. All six ultrasonic sensors will rarely go bad at the same time. Whatever it’s, ensure you have the sensor checked and changed as and when necessary.  

Faulty PDC Unit

Before the Parkpilot will malfunction, there’s a chance that the Park Distance Control (PDC) control system is faulty. The PDC control unit is responsible for controlling each of the six ultrasonic sensors that sense and send an active and malfunctioning signal to the display. It also monitors the sound signaling device in the entire system. 

As the PDC control unit malfunctions, the signal from the sensors and the sound signaling device will cease to function. One of the symptoms of a faulty PDC control unit is that the Parkpilot malfunction message will pop on the display. 

Once you notice the warning message, take your car for a scan. The professional will be able to tell what the problem is. In the case of a failing PDC control unit, the dealer will repair or replace damaged components. 

Improper PDI Setting 

I can also confirm to you that an improper PDI principle during the setting of your VW’s infotainment system can cause the Parkpilot feature to malfunction. Hence, the ‘Parkpilot is currently not available, a warning message will come on. A little error during tune-up can also be the cause of the parkpilot issue.   

In this instance, what you should do is hard reset the PDI procedure for the infotainment system. The stuff won’t come back again, trust me. 

Software issue

A little software glitch can cause the VW parkpilot not to work. Your VW dealer will need to perform a software diagnosis to know what the software issue is.  

How to Replace Parkpilot Sensor 

Once you get a 10mm wrench and a panel remover, you’ll need to also buy a Parkpilot sensor that’s compatible with your vehicle. Here are a few steps to replace a faulty Parkpilot sensor. 

  • Unscrew the bolts with your wrench 
  • Remove your vehicle’s bumper
  • Pull out the push pins and panels that cover the bolts. 
  • The bolts are beneath the bumper and hood. You also look at the wheel wells and trunk. 
  • Locate the position of the sensor
  • Take it off its plastic bracket
  • Uninstall the old faulty sensor from the sensor wiring harness 
  • Replace and install with a new sensor, passing it through the bumper holes
  • Replace the sensor bracket to secure the new sensor firmly in place
  • Reconnect the wiring harness, plastic bracket and bumper

There you have it. With the new sensor installed, the Parkpilot not working message should disappear and the system starts working.   


VW Parkpilot vs Park Assist: What’s the difference?

While both features enable you to find a space and park your vehicle safely, there’s a little between Parkpilot vs Park Assist. With the VW Parkpilot feature, the driver is in full control of all parking functions and actions of the vehicle. On the flip side, the VW Park Assist system enables the vehicle to monitor and control the steering job during parking. However, in both features, the driver controls the gas pedal and the brakes while the car does all the hard work. 


When your VW Park pilot feature fails, you don’t have to panic. But you should fix the error asap. Otherwise, allowing it to linger without fixing may cause other severe issues. Take your Volkswagen for diagnosis. The dealer or mechanic will know what causes the parkpilot to behave the way it’s. As I look forward to seeing you soon, I hope the information in this article helps you. Drive safely!  

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