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. Notes: What’s that smell – it’s a tad sweet with a tinge of chemical toxicity? If you own a 2011 Cruze it’s probably a coolant leak. It’s a widespread and notorious problem for the car and is the subject of a class-action lawsuit filed in the state of New York. And that’s not the only problem 2011 owners face…

Many say the 2011 model year suffers from a throttle lag that is probably due to a fauly electronic throttle control. The problem is signifigant enough that some owners say they are too scared to drive their cars. Those that do get behind the wheel often say their transmission isn’t shifting properly and problems start occuring as early as 15,000 miles.

All of this leads us to say you’re probably better off without this car’s headaches (they’re probably chemically-induced anyway).


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 4
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
44,259 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.

2011 Chevrolet Cruze engine problems

engine problem

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2011 Chevrolet Cruze Owner Comments (Page 3 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #91

Feb 012015


  • 29,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Cruze. While driving at approximately 60 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The instrument panel warning lights illuminated. The failure recurred several times. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 29,000.

- Madison, WI, USA

problem #90

Dec 262014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 64,000 miles
Yes, I too had problems with my 2011 Chevy Cruze. I was very glad that nothing happened to me while I was driving the car, I was just sitting at an idle stage; when I had all the bells going off and it had told me that engine reduced power. I to had to go and get this fixed and again like everyone else it was the throttle body and fuel injection system; cost $460. Not even a month later now I have no heat in the car and reading all the forums sounds like I am going to have to replace a water pump; joy for me. At first I really did love this car, but I find that the after the warranty goes seems like the car is falling apart. We should not be having these issues this early in the car's life. I also find it very bad poor customer service on GM's part that they are turning a blind eye to this. These parts need to be recalled asap, why is no one doing anything about this?

- Walton, KY, USA

problem #89

Jan 122015


  • 45,000 miles
My daughter almost died driving it on Monday. She was on route 1 in college park, md when the check engine/reduced power light came on and she could go no more than 2-3 mph. This is a very busy road, and she was almost in a potentially tragic accident. We had the car towed to sport Chevrolet in silver spring, md (240-471-3190). Our service advisor ([xxx]:) informed me this morning that the fix is a throttle body replacement which will cost $648. In going on the Chevy forum website, this has happened multiple times to Chevy Cruze and Malibu models. It's only a matter of time until someone dies. The throttle body is only covered up to 35K so I had to pay out of pocket. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Myersville, MD, USA

problem #88

Jan 142015

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 67,280 miles


As I was pulling out of my daughters school, my Cruze engine warning lights came on "reduced engine power" "check stablitrak" "service" warnings came on as well. My car lost all engine power and I was almost rear ended by a Dodge pickup, he was able to go up on the curb at the school and avoid an accident. Glad there was no one hurt on the curb. I checked the internet, re;, this is a known issues for GM for quite sometime now. GM customer service themselves is participating in the discussion there. It is a known issue with the throttle body. The throttle controls the power in the power train yet GM won't cover the repairs under their power train warranty. This isn't safe and it is known.

- Livonia, MI, USA

problem #87

Jan 072015


  • 62,500 miles
I was driving home from work in rush hour traffic. My speed dropped without warning from 35 mph to about 5 mph. I got a warning light indicating "engine power reduced" and the engine indicator light came on. I managed to pull car over to a side street and turned it off. I restarted it and the engine indicator light came on but I was able to make it home (about 12 miles). I called the service department at a local dealership to try to get some sort of idea of what was happening to my car. He suggested I call GM customer service and asked how many miles were on the car. I told him and he indicated the problem may be under a recall. Needless to say 5 days later I just heard from the service center that the problem is the throttle body assembly and it will cost me about $600+taxes to repair. He stated I have heavy carbon build up and something about the induction service. My biggest problem outside of not having six hundred dollars to give is that in November I paid $300+ to have the water pump replaced and three weeks before that it was in the shop and three weeks prior to that it was in the shop. I am so disappointed and hurt by all these repairs. I ended up with a Cruze because my Kia was hit head on in a crash and the frame was cracked. I had no problems with my Kia.

- Nashville, TN, USA

problem #86

Jan 092015


  • 43,000 miles
I purchased a used 2011 Chevy Cruze lt three months ago. Prier owner owned the vehicle for 3 years and hardly drove it. I was sitting at a light when the check engine light came on the "engine power reduced" flashed on my screen. The car slowed to 2 mph. I pulled over and turned off the vehicle. Later I turned the car back on, check engine light came on. When I started to drive "service esp" flashed on my screen, then "service traction" flashed on my screen following by "engine power reduce." This happened to me 3 times in the same trip and is very dangerous. I thought maybe it was because of the snowy weather and freezing temperature" anyone have this happen? how can I fix it? help!"

- Lansing, MI, USA

problem #85

Jan 272014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 90,000 miles


While driving at no specific speed the car alerts and says check engine, reduced engine speed, and check stabilizer traction control. The engine then powers down and will not accelerate. I was recently driving and this happened, to avoid an accident I ended up in a ditch and had to be towed out. I had the car repaired which was costly and was not covered under the power train warranty Chevy offers. I feel that this is a very dangerous defect on the car and should be addressed as a recall, due to the first time I tried to have the car repaired I was told it was gonna be 4-6 weeks to wait on the part because they were on back order because they have had quite a few cars with the same problem. When I addressed this issue with Chevy they had no concern that a car losing power while traveling was no big deal. I was nearly rear ended by a semi-truck and was forced into a ditch.

- Kankakee, IL, USA

problem #84

Dec 152014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 55,450 miles
Heater at first did not work; dealer removed air bubbles and topped off radiator. The dealer mechanics mentioned that typically the thermostats or temperature sensors have gone in the Cruze. 2 weeks later - sure enough, back at dealership - need 2 temperature sensors now. Based on blog activities - it seems like these warrant a recall.

- Rowley, MA, USA

problem #83

Oct 152014


  • 101,300 miles
I was pulling out of a gas station, use to my normal power and almost got hit because my car wouldn't go over 15mph floored. Then looked down and saw a engine power is reduced, service stabili trak and service traction control. So I took to a mechanic he hooked it up and the code showed up as my throttle body position sensor. They replaced it and drove it and it drove fine for about two weeks. I was just going down the road then all of a sudden my car did the same thing. I lost power so fast that I about got rear ended. Took it back to the body shop and showed the same code so they replaced the part again. And two days after all this my car is doing this again. This is extremely dangerous at how it looses engine power. It looses it so fast that someone can get hurt extremely bad.

- Rutledge , TN, USA

problem #82

Oct 242012


  • 26,000 miles
I am notifying you that I have had my water pump replaced three times since I have owned the car which was bought in April of 2012 with 9,000 miles on it, it seems every fall I am replacing the water pump as it has some sort of leak internally. It is very frustrating to continue to have this problem. Now recently my turbo oil line sprung a leak at 92,000 miles and so did my transmission oil line so it was back in the repair shop. I have also had to replace the heated seat element as this has burnt out somehow. This car has been very frustrating mechanically but otherwise love my Cruze. Is there anything I can do besides wait for the 4th water pump to claim a lemon under the lemon law?

- Cresco, IA, USA

problem #81

Nov 302014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles


Was traveling on the highway with cruise control set at 67mph when suddenly the car just lost power and the engine quit running. All of the dashboard instruments lost power, gas gauge registered empty, etc. Although the radio did not go off. Luckily this happened with very light traffic and was able to pull off in the emergency lane and put the vehicle in park and restarted the vehicle with no trouble. Continued our trip and did not happen again. After thinking about this I did notice the vehicle a few weeks ago losing some accelerating speed/power intermittently while traveling. Not sure if that was an indicator or not. Did call onstar approximately 5 hours after incident to diagnose and see if any error codes came up and they stated they showed nothing. This is my daughters vehicle and I fear that if she is traveling in heavy traffic and this happens again that this could cause a sever accident.

- Fraser, MI, USA

problem #80

Dec 042013

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
Vehicle shutdown while driving on highway, several times. The car electric turns off and or flashes, stabiltrak lights come on and flashes, check engine flashing, car completely shuts down, steering is electronic or motor powered and is hard to use, transmission jerks before shutdown and breaks don't work very well. Ran over curb and off the road to avoid colliding with other vehicles. Picture, im driving on a highway at night doing 65 or so, all power goes out, its dark, other cars can not see me well, they are swerving and im swerving. This happened first around 20K and has happened on several occasions after. No corrections offered by GM under warranty, complaints were completely ignored, until murdock Chevy in manhattan ks. They are currently trying to get it fixed and gave me a loner car, all other servicing dealers refused a loaner car, and told me its fixed each time. Car still has the problems listed and no solution is given from GM or Chevy to fix this deadly situation. Also damage to the car from an engine overheat or dashboard overheat at the same time damaging electric, windshield, radio, gauges and dash compartment lever. Extreme heat, burning smell inside. Floorboard by the feet melts carpet and burns feet, all at the same time, on drives of 30 minutes or more.

- Junction City, KS, USA

problem #79

Apr 212014


  • 88,895 miles
On this date we scheduled a oil change with a dealer who has performed all maintenance, recalls and repairs since the purchase of our new car. We where notified that the car was ready for pick up that morning as we arrived we paid our invoice, the consultant made us aware that the engine light came on (first time since new?) this consultant did not document this engine light to our records. Well, the engine light kept going off and on during the next 10K miles (2 oil change later, out of warranty, my fault) I had this check engine light diagnosed by our dealer and they had the codes and then further tried to correct the problem. They wanted $800 to install a new air intake manifold and throttle body then continue to test for more problems with no guarantee of repair. I could not afford the repair and declined the fix. The other problem surrounding this car since April 21, 2014 was that the fuel gauge would not show full after fill up and would move up and down the scale on the gauge. The ac would come on at strange times when running the heater" well any ways that was 7 hours at the dealer and made for a long day. I had to return to pick up the cover they forgot to install over the spark plugs, and complained about the leather sets being soaking wet with water and that the car has had these problems since April 2014 under warranty, the dealer did not want to help us? I purchased this car from them and purchased the 35K oil change extended warranty and bumper to bumper warranty" this dealer did all ! the maintenance, recalls and repairs. I'm glad we didn't go over the 1000 foot cliff at yellowstone when the brakes decided not to work (we learned later of the brake recall) they have a excuse for every question you ask, no reports on the all point inspection on our brakes and tires, password problem they say? I'm ready to buy a truck elsewhere now, poor GM an Chevy.

- Walnut Creek, CA, USA

problem #78

Oct 182014


  • 67,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Cruze. While driving 65 mph, the vehicle started jerking and the contact was unable to shift gears. The engine stalled and was taken to the dealer, but the failure could not be diagnosed. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 67,000.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #77

Nov 182014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
The vehicle would not shift out of park nor remove the key. The wheel was locked as well as the shift lever. The car would turn on however would not move. There was no lights in the vehicle.

- Garden City, MI, USA

problem #76

Nov 182014


  • 95,000 miles
Vehicle has had water pump replaced earlier this year under warranty - and had the turbo charger replaced last week under warranty. Not covered under warranty last week was a "leaking" battery. Since battery was original - I felt it was worth replacing. Yesterday, while driving to work, the check engine light came on and the heater stopped working. Today - the dealer calls me and states that they need to replace a hose and outlet. There was no leak yesterday - and they state that there is a leak and this is the reason. They want $250 for repairs. The hose was fine yesterday - and the outlet should have been replaced with the water pump (actually they should have replaced the hose at that time also). No response from GM quality care. Over $500 in the last two weeks - and I am not certain that this issue is over. It has also had two computers replaced when I first got it.

- Royse City, TX, USA

problem #75

Jun 132012

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 31,000 miles
My wife notice the coolant reservoir level had falling well below the full mark. She notified me that she needed coolant added. So we both inspected the car and could not find any leaks so elected to fill the reservoir and notified the dealer. The dealer found that the water pump seal was bad and that the coolant would drip onto the underlying pan and evaporate not leaving a trace of a leak. This was part of a recall so the repair was made. April 2014, mileage 88000. Another coolant leak, outlet manifold and hose failure. Not covered under warranties due to it being a hose. So I was charged $243.80 for what turned out to be a outlet manifold, attached to the engine (failure). Because a hose was attached to it they claimed it was not covered! my invoice reads $180 labor, $20.60 coolant, outlet $30.08 and hose $13.12. 11/18/2014, another coolant leak. I have an appointment on 11/20/2014 with the dealer and I'm going to ask for a refund due to in my opinion excessive coolant problems. I believe this could effect the engine cooling performance and damage the engine if not already. I have paid for the full warranty package when the car was purchased plus extended warranty package. The dealer is the only service dept. To ever touch this car.

- Walnut Creek, CA, USA

problem #74

Nov 172014


  • 34,000 miles
Was driving the Cruze, a message flushed in screen "ac turned off due to high engine temp" ac was not on, heat was not working, turned off blower, the screen changed to engine overheated idle engine, then changes to partial power loss and the car became sluggish, I had to continue driving until a safe place was available to pull off, then the reactions control light started blinking and my oil life indicator told me to change oil before returning to the partial power loss message. I towed to dealer.

- Sweet Valley , PA, USA

problem #73

Oct 042014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 63,000 miles
Oil leakage on top of engine, smell of burning oil, loud sound of vehicle, car misfires.

- Wakefield, MI, USA

problem #72

Oct 142014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
Engine shaking violently while idling. Stabiltrak warning on. Acting like it was going to die. Scared it would die while in traffic.

- Embarrass, MN, USA

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