VW changed this part to something a bit beefier.  How this thing works is there is a loop on the back of the lock cylinder.

Should be easy to see now that you're holding it in your hand <grin>.  That loop engages with a shaft that has a hook on the end.

The other end of the shaft is "flat" and fits into the door lock mechanism.  The hook is too thin, and breaks.

The new part has a larger loop on the cylinder, to accommodate a BIGGER HOOK.  Do both doors, 'cause if one broke, likely the other one will sometime soon.  Probably most inconveniently :)

So, how do you fix it?

DISCLAIMER - Working on cars is tricky business.  If you screw something up, it's not my fault.  If you don't understand the instructions, ask questions.  If I give bad instructions and you screw up, it's still not my fault.  These instructions are only provided for information.  If you spontaneously combust, the door gets scratched or meteors fall from the sky, again, not my fault.  Have you gotten the idea so far that you're an adult and can decide whether to try this on your own or not and accept the consequences?  If so, continue on.

Step 0 - (OK, I forgot one)  PUT THE LOCK CYLINDER IN A BAGGIE SO YOU DON'T LOOSE ANY OF THOSE LITTLE PINS OR SPRINGS!  Also, you DO NOT want them falling out of the cylinder, so don't play with it
either.  If you've lost pins, or they're not in order, you'll be ahead to have a locksmith fix up the cylinder for you.  Just
remember how much you spent when you also replace the other side's lock stuff, and don't loose the stuff!

Step 1 - If you don't already have it, Get the Bentley Manual!  (check old threads for sources or just get it from the dealer
for about $20 too much)

Step 2 - Read the Bentley Manual.  Your revision will likely be different, but in mine the diagram and pertinent text is on pages 57-6 through 57-8.  The drawings help more than my description will!

Step 3 - Get the New Parts.  (old parts shown -the new ones are in the car!)  Lock cylinder, hook shaft/connecting rod, springs and a little cylindrical doo-hickey that I have no idea what it's called :)  Also needed are a tube of lithium grease and a spray can of the same gook.  You'll need something relatively small, say a dental pick, scratch awl or something to change over the pins from the old lock to the new one.  One of those long grabber tools to pick up all the parts that fell into the door when they broke is a good thing too - otherwise stuff will rattle around.  All total from the dealer should be about $60 total for both sides.  IOW, ~$30/side

Step 4 - DON'T PULL OFF THE INTERIOR TRIM.  You'll just break clips or sumthin'.  To get at the parts in the bottom of the door, remove one of the plugs at the lower rear of the door.  Use the long grabber to fish stuff out.  Put the plug back in at the end.  If you put it back now you'll probably drop something later that you'll want back <sigh>

Step 5 - Remove the Outside Door Handle.  There's a "small" screw in the door in the jamb area, just to the rear of the handle.  Remove it.  The handle will now somewhat easily slide forward.  Pull the rear of the handle out of the door and maneuver the front out.  Congrats, you've removed the door handle!

Step 6 - Disassemble the Door Handle.  Pull off the old spring, and that cylindrical thingy.  Put the handle to the side.

Step 7 - Key the New Cylinder.  Get the new lock cylinder and the old one you put in a "baggie".  This is REAL EASY.  Just don't screw up :)  What you're going to do is transfer the pins from the old lock cylinder to the new one.  This is where the tube of lithium grease comes in.  Put a little in each slot of the new lock cylinder on the side where there's a little hole beside the slot.  The hole is where the spring goes.

Remove ONE pin and CAREFULLY remove it's spring.  Put it in the corresponding holes in the new lock cylinder.  Work from one end to the other so you don't have to count which damn slot they go in or you'll feel like a jerk when you goof it up.  A little bit of grease on the pin helps hold it in the new cylinder so you don't have to.  After you've got all the pins and spring transferred, put the key in the cylinder.  That 1) holds in all the pins so they don't fall out, and 2) if all the
pins are the same height, that is flush with the outside of the lock cylinder, you did it right.  If not, see Step 0 - seeing a locksmith :)

Step 8 - Reassemble the Door Handle.  Put the lock cylinder in the door handle and reassemble the hook, springs, etc.  At the end, you should have a hook shaft sticking out from the handle, the cylinder should turn back and forth, and the spring should return it to the neutral position.  (see Bentley manual for diagram)

Step 9 - Reinstall the Door Handle.  Insert the front of the handle into the door and slide it forward.  Insert the rear of the handle into the door.  On the driver's side you'll have to turn the lock 90 degrees so it'll fit in that slot in the door lock stuff in the door (doesn't matter which direction).  Look inside, you'll see what I mean.  Also, you'll notice a half moonish thing on the inside that is what the door handle pulls against to release the door latch.  You'll have to jiggle the handle a bit to get it by.  I don't remember the trick exactly, but I tried pulling out on the handle a little, sliding it fore and aft, etc, etc.  It WILL go in.  After all, minimum wage labor put it in, you should be able to too :)  Slide the handle all the way back to the original position and reinstall the retaining screw inside the door.  Put the plugs back in the door.

Step 10 - Test the Install.  You've probably already done it by now, but turn off the honking alarm and test the new locks action and make sure you can open the door, lock the door, etc.  (I set off my alarm several time goofing with the lock with the door open, or playing with the latch mechanism with the alarm armed, etc :)

If the action of the lock is a little stiff, squirt in some more lithium grease from the can of spray stuff you got.  Make sure you shake it up well first, or you'll just get clear junk.  You want to slime the inside ;)  You'll be getting grease boogers on your keys for awhile, so be careful.  They go away in about a week.  WD40 sux on locks.  Don't use it.  It doesn't lube after the carrier evaporates. (kerosene basically)  Powdered graphite or lithium grease.  Accept no substitutes.

Step 10a - (OK, forgot one again!)  Do the other side.  Trust me, you won't regret it.

Step 11 - Put up your tools, clean the grease off the outside of the car, and throw a clean shop towel in the car to clean off your key for the next week or so :)

Step 12 - Let us know how it goes.  I'll fix up whatever boo boo's you find and offer it to the FAQ ghouds.  It sounds like these cylinders are somewhat prone to breakage.  Unfortunately, I don't know when they changed over to the new parts, so if anyone wants to know which rev they have, they'll have to look.  If there's interest I'll post a pic of the old style hook shaft (broken) to my lameo web page for comparison.

Click here for a paged version of this page.  Hopefully it fixes some of the picture printing problems.