Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.

CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2006 Cobalt continued to carry the torch first lit by the 2005 model year. To be clear, that torch is burning bright with widespread power steering issues, electrical curiosities and a dangerous ignition switch defect which led to a massive recall by GM. This isn’t a great torch to carry.

The 2006 added it’s own special flare with gas leaks due to cracks in the “return portion of the modular reservoir assembly.” A recall of 2006 Cobalts was issued to fix the problem, but only to vehicles sold in or current registered in Arizona and Nevada, leaving other owners to pay for repairs themselves.

Between this car stalling while driving, giving owners fits with power steering failure and having it be a potential tinderbox because of gas leaks, we felt we had no other option than to award it our “Avoid Like the Plague” badge.

10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
68 / 4
Injuries / Deaths:
129 / 3
Average Mileage:
60,279 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2006 Chevrolet Cobalt steering problems

steering problem

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2006 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 1 of 56)

problem #1111

Nov 222016

Cobalt

  • 90,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

While parallel parking vehicle on the side of a city street, the power steering went out, making it nearly physically impossible to turn the car steering wheel. It felt like the wheels were frozen or stuck, especially while driving slowly, turning, or backing up. GM recall number N100023

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #1110

Oct 232016

Cobalt

  • 136,000 miles
My problems are came about with the electronic power steering on this vehicle as I have searched and found the problem too be very common. Found that it has been widely recalled including my model year with numerous complaints too the NHTSA. The first time it happened I was getting ready too go to a doctors appointment, the power steering message came on the dashboard, everything seemed too be working except the speedometer and it drove fine. On the way back home however the car would no shift past first gear. I took it too a mechanic that lives next too me. He said the wiring harness was bad, replaced it, got it back. Drove fine with no problems for three weeks, even the driver front blinker was working which had never worked since I got the car back in March of this year. Then after the three weeks the power steering message came back on and all the same symptoms are back, no speedometer, hard shifting if any, it even caused the engine light too come on this time which an auto parts store determined too be a random misfire. I changed the spark plugs and it went off. My theory is that the tcm is not grounded correctly too handle this and shorts out as I have found that others have grounded the tcm and it has fixed all the problems too their claim. I searched recalls on my car using the VIN and my car is not listed on it and since this has been recurring and I've had all the problems everyone else has noted I feel that is a great concern. The message and all the effects happen as soon as I start the car if it's going too happen (so far). It first happened on the date indicated and then again on 11/15/2016.

- Noel, MO, USA

problem #1109

Nov 152016

Cobalt

  • 117,638 miles
This has happen to me 5 times all at different times. One time I was stationary in a parking lot. The others have been driving down city streets, turning corners and on the highway. I will be driving down the road or just start my car and the gauges just go nuts. My security light will come on my fuel gauge, RPM gauge. And mph gauge will just go to zero. The RPM gauge bounces up to 900-1000 then back to zero. The words on the dash will read low fuel (even if I actually have a full tank) and then it'll cut my power steering and I won't be able to turn at all or barely. I also have a video of it doing it while I was stationary. This is dangerous and has made me almost crash multiple times. And once I actually hit a curb in a parking lot when it decided to happen.

- Springfield, MO, USA

problem #1108

Jul 012016

Cobalt

  • 130,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving various speeds, the front end of the vehicle shook and became unstable. The contact heard an abnormal noise coming from the steering wheel. The power steering warning indicator illuminated. The failure recurred on numerous occasions. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 130,000.

- Henrico, VA, USA

problem #1107

Nov 082016

Cobalt

  • 157,076 miles
Takata recall.... my steering has become very hard over the last few months. I just purchased the car in March 2016

- Fort Worth, TX, USA

problem #1106

Jan 072016

Cobalt

  • miles
Vechicle always automatically switches to power steering while in motion. It always does this whenever the temperature is 80 or more degree. The steering becomes stiff and refuses to turn. One has to keep going straight or stop the car to restart but it goes back to power steering in less than 10 minutes again.

- Rosedale, MD, USA

problem #1105

Oct 082016

Cobalt

  • 118,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Sudden loss of all power steering while driving.

- Cleves, OH, USA

problem #1104

Aug 162016

Cobalt

  • 206,686 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 45 mph, the steering wheel failed to turn right or left. The contact had to wait approximately 45 minutes before the steering wheel was able to unlock. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The warning indicators were not illuminated. The failure recurred on numerous occasions. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 206,686.

- Griffin, GA, USA

problem #1103

Sep 262016

Cobalt

  • 18,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 45 mph, the steering wheel became difficult to turn and an undetermined warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 18,000.

- Washington Park, IL, USA

problem #1102

Sep 202016

Cobalt

  • 91,890 miles
Our 2006 Cobalt has experienced a failure of the power steering, requiring a replacement steering column and electronic power steering motor. This is the same part that was replaced in 2010 as part of recall no. N100023. I talked with GM representatives over the phone, and they stated that GM parts are warranted for 12 months following the replacement under the recall. Otherwise, repairs are only warranted under the standard manufacturer or extended warranty if purchased.

- Tallahassee, FL, USA

problem #1101

Sep 212016

Cobalt

  • 57,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While attempting to turn the steering wheel, the steering wheel became inoperable without warning. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the control module or motor failed and needed to be repaired. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 57,000.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #1100

Sep 172016

Cobalt

  • 125,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 60 mph, the doors locked and unlocked and the power steering and check engine warning indicators illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the power steering failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 125,000.

- Shreveport, LA, USA

problem #1099

Sep 152016

Cobalt

  • 170,500 miles
The steering has gotten tight when making turns. Like its low on power steering fluid and realized this is controlled electronically. I've read that there's been some recalls but never received one for my Cobalt of this is the problem.

- Eden, NC, USA

problem #1098

Sep 162016

Cobalt

  • 119,870 miles
Had ignition switch replaced for recall about a yr ago. While driving on interstate car showed power steering in info line. Then odometer, speed, info numbers all stopped working. Pulled in gas station, car won't start, key won't come out of ignition. After a few mins, car started back up and now anti-theft light is on. Managed to drive tha car 100 mi. Back home but noise like lawnmower coming from front and felt like transmission stuck or slipping. Was terrified that car was gonna blow up or just stop and get hit by semi. The car has also just stopped a couple of times after having the ignition switch replaced. I had no problems with this until it was replaced. I did have the fuel leak happen and the electrical lights stop working and dim or get brighter with braking. This car is so dangerous to the drivers as well as public, it should not be in the road and consumers should not have to spend money they can't afford to fix a manufacturers screw-up.

- Corbin, KY, USA

problem #1097

Aug 272016

Cobalt

  • 100,000 miles
I have a 2006 Chevy Cobalt and in the first year I've had it I had encountered numerous problems. The first problem was that the radio that was installed started flashing and was not working whatsoever, an electrical issue. The next problem was the suspension after just 3 months of having it the shocks were worn out completely and had to get that fixed. Then just 1 month later my struts, tire rods, alignment, oil pressure sensor went to complete "S*" so now I'm struggling with bills after having to fix most things on my car I haven't fixed all the problems since I'm low on money having to keep and keep fixing this car. Then to top it off just this morning going to work the "power steering"light pops up and I cant even turn my steering wheel, I turned it off and then it worked fine but I'm very scared it will keep happening especially when going down the highway. Please help

- Bismarck, ND, USA

problem #1096

Aug 262016

Cobalt

  • 144,000 miles
Power steering went completely out. Too hard to turn and too dangerous to drive.

- Chattanooga, TN, USA

problem #1095

Aug 252016

Cobalt

  • 133,724 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving 30 mph, the check engine and power steering warning indicators illuminated. The contact coasted to the side of the road. The vehicle was not diagnosed nor repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 133,724.

- Greensburg, PA, USA

problem #1094

Aug 102016

Cobalt

  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving approximately 65 mph, the power steering warning light illuminated and the rpms revved intermittently. In addition, the vehicle failed to properly shift gears several times. The dealer was notified of the failure, but the vehicle was not diagnosed nor repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 70,000. Updated 10/05/16

- Ventnor City, NJ, USA

problem #1093

Aug 032016

Cobalt

  • 87,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that the vehicle lunged forward and experienced violent shaking while driving 35 mph. The power steering warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic and dealer, but the failure could not be replicated. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 87,000.

- Toms River, NJ, USA

problem #1092

Jul 052016

Cobalt

  • 181,000 miles
I was driving the car on the highway, going about 38 mph and the power steering warning beeped and displayed on my dash. The steering tightened up a bit, and the car slowed down, as I was driving (I don't know what the car slowed down to because the speedometer then dropped to zero, but the tachometer continued to rev (I want to say) between 2 & 3 RPM, while the car was still in motion. The locks were clicking up and down too while this was all happening. Then the car bucked and the speedometer began working. The power steering warning light remained lit during the whole time. I was able to pull into a parking lot for safety. This was clearly a driving safety issue due to the vehicle slowing down when the power steering warning light came on. There were other affected parts, but I was not able to select the boxes: Electrical; other (speedometer) this also happened today: 07/10/16, prompting another complaint to be filed.

- Brick, NJ, USA

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