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: In many ways, the 2012 Cruze continues the legacy of its predecessor. It's a legacy of sluggish transmissions and coolant leaks, but it's still a legacy.

To be fair, the number of complaints about the cooling system are way down versus the 2011 model which led to a class-action lawsuit.

On the flip-side, there's more concerns about brake problems.

However, there were far more Cruze vehicles sold for the 2012 model year so we'll give it our "Beware of this Clunker" badge rather than the "Avoid Like the Plague."


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
7 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
40,953 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.

2012 Chevrolet Cruze electrical problems

electrical problem

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2012 Chevrolet Cruze Owner Comments (Page 5 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #44

May 222014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 70,000 miles


I was driving home from work, about 15 miles on the freeway at the speed limit which is 75 mph. The car with no warning completely shut itself off. As a result, I lost the ability to steer or brake. I would estimate it stayed off for approximately 5 seconds before kicking back on, without my having to restart. I treated this as an anomaly. Last week on my way to work, which is in the dark at 3am, it shut itself of 3 times within 10 miles of a 70 mile drive. Each time giving me a service indicator light of some sort ( service stabilitrak, service anti theft...) I had no steering, no breaks and no lights. Again this is in the dark!! I noticed that there are 43 other complaints of this very serious safety issue with no resolution from this site, the dealerships or the manufacturer. Is it going to take a death or horrifyingly bad accident to get this addressed"?"

- Philipsburg, MT, USA

problem #43

Jan 072014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
This incident has happened on numerous occasions and was taken to the dealership three different times to address the issue... the problem is still occurring and nothing is resolved. Radio would turn on/off and dashboard lights kept flickering, service traction control and service stability trak would pop up along wit fh the engine light and traction control light and the vehicle turned on/off. Engine would sound really loud at times, even after the car was turned off (maybe it was the engine fan but I'm not sure)... this car is nothing but problems after problems and they are not getting resolved because they keep recurring.

- Walled Lake, MI, USA

problem #42

Apr 012014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
In April I had been driving and noticed that my radio was flickering. After about ten minutes of my radio flickering on and off, the "service stabilitrack" light came on. Once the service light came on, power steering shut off and I had to pull the vehicle over. After pulling over, I shut off the vehicle and then tried to restart it. This time it started with a new service light on. I took the car into the dealership and they had it for three days hoping that the problem would present itself to them. I showed them a video of what happens to the radio and they were unable to help me. They did however notice that a previously recall done on my car had not been fixed before I purchased it. A few days after getting the car back, the lights started to flicker again. I contacted the dealership and they let me know that there was no point in bringing it in unless the problem was constant. About a month later, I went to start my car and nothing. No lights, no engine turn over nothing. My key was stuck in the ignition and would not turn. My fiance had to get out tap the battery and the whole thing started up. Two days ago, the same radio, service lights and engine shut off happened again. This is 2 times now that I have had complete failure in the middle of the road. I am literally terrified for my life!!!!!!!....updated 07/31/14

- Snohomish, WA, USA

problem #41

Jun 022014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 54,000 miles


After you shut the car off and get out of the car, it sounds like the motor is still running.

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #40

Feb 202014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 46,000 miles
My 2012 Chevy Cruze turned the radio dashboard on/off and the check engine light came on in December 2013 the engine light remained on the radio only once then didn't do it again. In February 2014 it started doing it again this time the stereo would turn on/of, the dash board on/off and my locks would unlock and lock themselves the blinker stopped making the clicking sound and the open door sound failed as well. This problem would occur occasionally until April 2014 the vehicle started to do all the issues above except this time it would include anti theft, service stabiltrack, and power warnings every time and the vehicle would turn off/on the engine and required me to put it on park and turn it off/on. In May 12 of 2014 I took the vehicle into the Chevrolet dealer to resolve this issue.they resolved several issues to what they believed resolved the issue of the vehicle turning on off. That didn't resolve the issue. My vehicle now is worse it turns off/on while driving accelerating or decelerating. It turns the radio on/off and gives me the same errors codes. Its life threatening as I almost got into a accident jumping onto the free way June 1014, my vehicle turned off and would not turn on on the free way entrance and a vehicle from behind was about to hit me. My vehicle is un safe for, me and my family keeps turning on/off and I have taken it to Chevrolet dealer 3 times and they do not know what is wrong. Life threatening issues!!

- San Jacinto, CA, USA

problem #39

Dec 022013

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 20,000 miles
Car shuts down and it can not be restarted, (no dome light, no on start) no power anywhere..can't get keys out of ignition, going down the road, steering service light come on and off, radio display shuts down and restarts, gauges turn on and off..dealership has replaced battery, generator and it is still doing the same thing. Currently at dealership again.!....updated 07/31/14 it was determined the ground wire on the battery was broke. Which caused the vehicle to stall, shutting down all the gauges. There have been no problems, since it was replaced. Updated 09/23/14

- Hillsdale, MI, USA

problem #38

Feb 032014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 21,000 miles


Vehicle no longer acknowledged presence of the key fob in vehicle and warned that the vehicle should not be shut off. Key fob was in the vehicle at the time and had been detected to unlock the door automatically and allow ignition of vehicle by pressing start button while fob was in my pocket. Once we stopped the vehicle, it would not restart until 9 or 10 tries of pushing the ignition. After the initial occurrence while driving, it then sporadically had issues with starting. Each time it it would show a warning message that the key fob was not detected, even though it just auto unlocked the doors after sensing the key fob. Dealer replaced key fobs, and problem returned. Two days later nearly stranding my wife while travelling out of town since the car would not initially start. Dealer then replaced the module/computer that controls the keyless functionality. Problem reoccurred a few days later. Dealer will now replace the key fobs again while the vehicle is in for a separate repair.

- Mt Pleasant, SC, USA

problem #37

Nov 112013

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 42,000 miles
While driving all of the dash lights keep flickering on and off. The power steering went out and the ac turned off and would not turn on. The next day the car would not start and key was stuck in the ignition.

- Mount Juliet, TN, USA

problem #36

May 202014


  • 75,500 miles
Radio flashed on and off and all brake lights on dash would light up. Service stability control notice would appear. Then it would go away and reappear. Did this for an entire hour and a half ride on highway. Radio on radio off dashboard lights on and off. Blinker no longer clicked when used... disconcerting to drive a car with such problems. A week earlier I had car issues covered under power tran warranty... and now this...all after a massive recall announced. Think GM needs to re look at all of their cars...

- West Springfield, MA, USA

problem #35

Dec 162013


  • 48,000 miles
December 2013 -- the radio and dash board lights (service stabilitrak) have been flashing on and off then this evening while driving on a straight road, the "service power steering" light flashed on and my steering wheel locked up. That continued for approx. 2 minutes then started working correctly. When I got home and pulled into my parking spot and turned my car off everything turned off, including my interior lights and I couldn't remove my key from the ignition. I let it sit for approx. 5 minutes then tried to start the car and it did turn on so I turned it off again and I was able to remove the key. February 2014 -- the same things are happening and the power steering turns off and the steering wheel locks up May 2014 -- power steering turns off and steering wheel locks up; battery completely dies randomly; new dealership tells me the battery cables need to be replaced; however, other Cruze owners who have filed a complaint with the same issues and had their battery cable replaced report that this does not resolve the issue.

- Columbus, MS, USA

problem #34

Apr 072014


  • 20,000 miles


Radio starts turning on and off, stability control lights flash, power steering gets hard to turn.this is the third time we brought it to the shop.its good for a week or so and does the samething again. They claim this is the only Cruze they ever heard of doing this.I don't think so not according to your web site somebody knows this is a big problem. Why do dealer ships think lying is the way to solve the problem, I mean it just come out and say ya your daughters car is not the only 2012 Cruze with this problem! my patience are getting a little thin. Car was bought with 20000 miles on it by my oldest daughter who is 20 yrs old and putting herself trough college to become a nurse. She was so happy when she bought the car now she thinks she bought a lemon! car from kissel Chevrolet calumet mi cant figure out the problem, its to late when somebody gets hurt or worse!!!! concerned father.

- Atlantic Mine, MI, USA

problem #33

Mar 152014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 51,000 miles
Our 2012 Chevy Cruze started with the radio turning "off" and "on" on its own the month after we bought the car. A month later it happened again as well as left my wife stranded at a store. Car didn't want to turn on. I figured it may have been a bad battery. Before I could even "jump" the vehicle, the car got all power back on with no problem. The 3rd time radio turned off and on its own and then shut down completely with no power to vehicle at the same store near my wife's work. I noticed nothing electrical worked in the car, like hazard lights, brake lights, and anything that should have 12 volt constant power. I now carry a multimeter in the car. On a 400 mile drive on the highway I experience the radio issue as well as "stabilitrac", and many other malfunction lights displaying on and off on my dash while driving 75 mph. I even recorded this while driving. My family and I were on vacation and while driving I lost power steering then the car shut down and left us stranded with no power again. Wait about 10 to 15 minutes, the car will return back to normal like nothing happened. Took it straight to the dealer right at that moment and they couldn't duplicate the problems. Returned home from vacation and it all happened again in traffic while driving. My wife and kids were in the car. I called for a tow truck and towed it to the Chevy dealership in town. I left it with them for 4 days and they still couldn't find anything wrong with the car. This car still continues to turn off to this day and I've only had the car for 6 month now. I won't let my family in this car. I have also experienced the door locks, lock and unlock on its own and the wipers activated on there own. Not sure whether it could be a bad ECU, BCM, electrical harness, fuse boxes. The ECU was reprogrammed at the 2000 miles for an unknown reason. Wish I had bought a different car instead of this lemon.

- Corpus Chrisit, TX, USA

problem #32

Apr 072014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 43,500 miles
As I drive down the road my stability trak light comes on and my radio turns on and off. Now my power steering goes out and my car won't always start. I've taken it in 3 times to have these issues fixed and nobody can seem to figure out what is wrong. I've been left stranded with my 3 year old son because my car wont start. I've only had this car 2 months and it is by far the worst car I have ever had.

- Umatilla, OR, USA

problem #31

Feb 052014


  • 51,000 miles
I was sitting at a stoplight to turn left. After the light turned green I applied pressure to the gas pedal and noticed a slight loss of power. As I proceeded through the turn I had difficulty turning as though I had no power steering. Once through the turn I still has no power steering and noted a message on the dash reading "service steering". I controlled the car to the next stoplight which was approximately 1/2 mile during which time I still had no power steering. At the stop light I turned the car off, and started it again. After restarting the car I had no more problems with the steering. Prior to this instance and multiple times following I have had issues with the electrical system failing. It usually begins with the radio board "blinking" off. By blinking I mean that the radio completely shuts off and the radio dash lights blink off and on until it finally returns to full power. But usually its not a one time thing. There are times where this occurs every 5 seconds until I'm able to pull the car over and turn it off. While this occurs I will get a message on my dash cluster saying to "service stabilitrac" along with several other cluster lights that blink. I have taken this car to the dealership where it was purchased and they have not been able to reproduce what I've experienced, and such they have not been able to fix anything. This first began while the car was under bumper to bumper warranty, but that has since passed and if they were able to actually fix anything I would be stuck with the bill.

- Cersco, NE, USA

problem #30

Apr 012014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 63,000 miles
Vehicle started with the radio panel light flashing on and off and the radio would also turn off. Today the electrical problems progressed greatly, impacting the power stealing I was turning around the corner and, the steering seems to stick/bind and requires additional effort to make a steering correction. I almost hit the car waiting in the corner for the light. But I was able to control the steering while even though it was very hard to do.

- Fort Worth , TX, USA

problem #29

Dec 172013

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 50,238 miles
Car has ongoing issues with radio flashing, multiple errors appearing on the dash, blinkers having sound one minute and not the next. When these issues occur and you are turning on your bright lights, the radio discontinues playing then starts again. Since these issues are intermittent, I recorded the issues and took the car to progressive Chevrolet. I showed them the video and the kept the car and tried to recreate the issue. They indicated they were unable to recreate the issue and did not advise me they fixed anything on the car. After filing a complaint with the better business bureau, a GM representative advised me that progressive had replaced the brake vacuum micro switch during this visit. My husband and I were never advised of this repair. After speaking with the GM representative, I checked the receipt and it was listed as being completed at no charge. I feel we weren't advised of this repair because we were attempting to trade the car in and were negotiating with their sales team. I did not purchase a car from them due to the value that they wanted to give me on this car. The car with all of the problems that they cannot fix!! ongoing issues continue and I have been advised by GM to take the car back to a dealership and have them review the car again. I have an appointment scheduled for tomorrow, Monday, March 31, 2014. This issue is very distracting and causes a lot of stress on the individuals in the car! the lights flashing at night are blinding and could truly cause a person to get into an accident. You worry what is not going to work when this is taking place. Help in determining what is causing these problems and having GM recall these cars and take responsibility is necessary! I am sure it will save lives!

- Beach City , OH, USA

problem #28

Aug 192013

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 44,528 miles
Car towed from serpentini to progressive since the repair that progressive completed a week prior did not fix the existing problem. Car shutting off and not starting. Progressive wiring harness to ubec has bad connection due to ubec and wiring harness connection stripped out, necessary to replace complete harness. Removed ubec, replaced fuse block, main body harness, required R&R of battery and tray, ebcm, master cylinder and brake booster, dash components removed/loosened to remove brake/gas pedal bracket assembly (harness grommet installed between bracket and firewall), R&R of trunk panels, complete interior including rear seats, lowering headliner. Replaced brake booster pushrod clip and rear seat side bolster clip with repair. GM paid for the cost of this repair. Additional electrical issues continue with car. Will add an additional complaint.

- Beach City , OH, USA

problem #27

Aug 152013

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 44,524 miles
Stopped at a stop sign and car started missing when attempting to go thru intersection. Car stopped and would not start. Car was towed to serpentini Chevrolet in strongsville. They indicated the car started at their facility but was giving the same code (heck Z - U0109) that progressive Chevrolet in canton had gotten and progressive replaced the fuel pump control module 3 days prior. Serpentini indicated the car was fine. I complained to progressive and they had the car towed from serpentini back to their facility.

- Canton, OH, USA

problem #26

Aug 092013

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 44,286 miles
After stopping at a stop sign, I attempted to proceed thru the intersection when the car starting missing and then stopped and would not start. Car was towed to progressive Chevrolet and they replaced the fuel pump control module. This is what they thought was the problem and it was not. I will open separate complaints for each incident with the car.

- Beach City , OH, USA

problem #25

Nov 032012

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 29,250 miles
The day I purchased the vehicle, the radio intermittently discontinued working. The following morning after driving the care for approximately 20 miles and then stopping to visit my father, the car would not start. The car was towed back to the dealer and they noticed a burnt smell and no voltage to BCM, the repair order indicates they replaced ubec and operated system was all ok at that time.

- Beach City , OH, USA

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