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pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
86,404 miles
Total Complaints:
69 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. gasket replacement (31 reports)
  2. not sure (17 reports)
  3. have it repaired with an aftermarket gasket (14 reports)
  4. waiting for a recall! using "stop leak" until then (7 reports)
2001 Chevrolet Malibu engine problems

engine problem

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2001 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #69

Jul 092012

Malibu LT 3.1L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 105,000 miles


Replaced intake gaskets and found out one of the heads is cracked and will have to be replaced. Been a Chevy man all my life but now after reading all the complaints that GM will not own up to I will not buy anymore, Toyota Toyota Toyota

- , Carlsbad, NM, USA

problem #68

Nov 112008

Malibu LS 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,206 miles

Continuous oil leakage problem is very annoying also there is coolant leakage from almost everywhere. Mechanic's quote was greater than the residual price of the car.

- , Toronto, ON, Canada

problem #67

Dec 012010

Malibu LS 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 97,471 miles

The car has had numerous problems since it was bought brand new in March of 2001. Specifically the intake manifold has been replaced twice. The first time it was replaced the mechanic used an after market part that claimed to remedy the problem. They also got rid of the Dex-Cool coolant and substituted a different brand. At that point in time they also replaced the water pump. In December of 2010 it began to leak again, I took it to a different shop this time where they used an OEM manifold and Dex-Cool to fix it. Both time it cost over $1,000. I really love the car but hate all the problems that come with it. Also, I was sent a check for $50 by the Dex-Cool litigation.

- , Saint Louis, MO, USA

problem #66

May 012006

Malibu LS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles


That was the FIRST time I had to replace the head gaskets ! I had to do it again after ALL THE ANTI FREEZE leaked out of my car in someone's driveway !! Cost me another $500, & only one day out of work as a friend of a car dealer did the job for me & right away !

What a piece of junk this car has been !

- , Providence, RI, USA

problem #65

Mar 012009

Malibu 3,3

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

have to add coolant every so often which is expensive over time. and as i am living on fixed income, i am unable to afford lump sum 800 to fix. also oil pressure regulator also had to be replaced after an oil change. car has only 60000 miles on it. i will never recommend gm to anyone again.

- , Tulsa, OK, USA

problem #64

Sep 022010

Malibu LS 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

The good people at chevy really need to get their heads out of their ass holes and do the f*cking recall on this i for 1 and sick and tired off people being abused and not acknowledged when obviously the reapirs need to be paid for by them for dodgy workmanship, i went to a mechanic and was told the same that there was always a problem with this gasket and me and the wife were told $450 which we cannot afford to pay for, this is our only vehicle and demand chevrolet take full responsibility and recall this immediately!!

I will be calling chevrolet to complain every day and every hour to get my voice heard!!

Sorry u guys have to deal with this problem too!!

- , Fort Worth, TX, USA

problem #63

Jul 042008

Malibu LS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200,000 miles


This Is a crock of sh*t!!!!!! These bastards need to pay for this f*cking sh*t. I think this is a piece of sh*t car and really deserves a recall. I think anyone that has had to replace your head gaskets more than once deserve a new car through Chevrolet. I have to have my gasket done because they went out again and I just had them replaced when it first start running hot and nearly blow in 2008. These people who made these cars should get there ass kicked!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

- , Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #62

Nov 242009

Malibu SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,917 miles

click to see larger images

leaking intake manifold gasket leaking intake manifold gasket leaking intake manifold gasket leaking intake manifold gasket leaking intake manifold gasket leaking intake manifold gasket

I had the oil changed and the fluids topped off and went to Wal-Mart and grocery stores and drove around town. I unloaded the groceries and smelled that antifreeze smell and then noticed it coming out the bottom of the car. The leak was on the backside of the engine. The blackish gasket material was hanging down side. I couldn't get a picture of it being next to the firewall but that's what the mechanic said. Our dealership closed because of the bail out settlement so I had to take it to a local mechanic for repairs.

What's messed up about the whole thing is that the dealership warned us about the problem 3 years ago and the costs of repairs and defective materials used in the gasket materials. I can't believe that CHEVY would pull a stunt like this. I have been buying Chevys since 1950.

Recommendation: Don't buy a GM/FORD union made vehicle because of their cheap materials that are used to substitute the high cost of labor.

- , Fort Morgan, CO, USA

problem #61

Apr 142009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 226,000 miles

Okay Enough is Enough. My mechanic told me the FIRST time this happened that this is a common problem... Now...here I was again... My mechanic told me now thay have a permanant gasket..... What the hell??? MONEY PIT!!

- , Rossville, GA, USA

problem #60

Mar 012003


  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

I am just pissed that this issue is not a RECALL!!! Good Grief...look at all the folks it has happened to.

- , Rossville, GA, USA

problem #59

Sep 162009

Malibu V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 135,000 miles


I bought this car in early 2004. Honestly, after reading all of the other complaints about these types of cars, I really cannot complain too much about mine. I bought this car with almost 40,000 miles on it and this is the first thing that has ever went wrong with it. I have never even had to tune it up! Shocking, I know, but true. It has been the best running car I have ever owned.

Last week, my low coolant light came on, on my way home from work. Come to find out, my thermostat was sticking, and it needed to be replaced. After my mechanic looked at it, he realized my intake gasket was leaking. He replaced both for 725 bucks. This week, the same thing happened to me on the way home from work. When I got home, I called the garage and he said to bring it back in and let him look at it. UGH!!!! now, my gasket around my timing belt is leaking antifreeze !! Another 450 dollars to replace it. I have made up my mind, that if it happens again, I am getting rid of it.

One thing he did say. Only use GREEN antifreeze in your vehicles. Any other color will eat your gaskets up. I just wonder if GM used a different or cheaper grade of antifreeze in their Malibu's?? Maybe that could be the problem. He said I had a yellow color in it, and I had never done anything to it since I had bought it in 2004. Just a thought.

- , Wapakoneta, OH, USA

problem #58

Jun 262008

Malibu V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,888 miles

It is really really annoying how everytime the car is put into park, the car revs up all the way to 2 or 2.5 thousands rpm

- , Kingsland, TX, USA

problem #57

May 202009

Malibu 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

I bought this car used in 2004..3 days after the 90 day lemon law I was told my LIG was bad and had to be replaced..told me it would be 800.00..I then told the dealership where I purchased it frrom to shove the car and the payments where the sun doesnt shine..they then agreed to pay for it..for the past few yrs I have smelled antifreeze and thought that maybe it was just from where it had leaked before..in the mean time I swear my car is possessed..the locks go off and on..the horn beeps when I start or stop my car..now I have all this white smoke coming out of the exhaust and my car sputters..I drove it home with my foot on the break and gas..my engine light was on but my temperture gauge was in the middle..it didnt go into the red..

Im keeping my fingers crossed that it wont cost alot as I just lost my job,have no money,single Mom..cant find a job if I dont have a car..and I cant buy a car being on unemployment..if I ever get a chance to buy a car it will never be a GM..guess Im going to have to bus it for a long time...GM SUCKS..they should reimburse everyone who has had the same problems..any news on a recall?

- , Fairport, NY, USA

problem #56

Mar 172009

Malibu LS 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,250 miles

I like so many other was suckered into buying the Leaky Intake Manifold option when I got my 2001 Malibu. The repair would have only been $800 (ya, only!) but the intake manifold was warped and it cracked when the mechanic tried to replace it. Another $550 dollars later and I thought I was back on the road. Which I was for just one month. The leaking manifold had already done deeper damage and the main bearing let go on the interstate. Now I am looking at $3400.00 to replace it. This is more repair than I have put in my previous 8 cars combined. I tried to buy American but I can't afford it. Back to Mitsubishi built cars for me

- , Revere, MA, USA

problem #55

Mar 192008

Malibu LS 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,293 miles

No symptoms just was leakin when i brought it in. Apparently its very common and has been known to repeat.

- , Calgary, AB, Canada

problem #54

Jun 012008

Malibu V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,421 miles

In May of 08 I started having problems with my car after having it for 2yrs. They drained the anti freeze first.Then it starting overheating.The replaced water pump.Same problem.I decided to have the engine replaced after breaking down 6x. that was June $2100. Guess what, 3 mths later same exact problems again.I had the intke manifold gasket replaced at the cost of $700.00 Sept. So now I start to overheat again. I go to a different mechanic in Dec. because I think I'm being taken advantage of. I was so wrong. The intake manifold gasket needs to be repaired. F** this car and Chevy too. I spent so much money on anti freeze tow trucks and engine checks. I could have got another car Kim J. Philly

- , Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #53

Jan 012007

Malibu 3.1L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

I've read all the complaints posted here and can't believe that nothing has been done by GM to rectify the problem (recall/reimbursement).

I have the same issues with my Malibu (leaking intake manifold gasket,engine knocking,blower fan not working on all settings,brakes making noise,etc.).....nothing new to add. I just wanted to officially include myself to this long list of happy "American Auto"

owners.Thanks GM !!

I can't wait to purchase my next car...........from the Japanese.

- , Rochester, NY, USA

problem #52

Jul 052008

Malibu LS 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 109,000 miles

I didn't know that this was a common problem. I had got quotes from different mechanics and they told me it was common so I googled the make and model of my car and low and behold, I found this website. I was on the verge of trading in my car prior to the fourth of July weekend but my car breaks down. I see that if every mechanic across the country knows that this a common problem, then why doesn't GM take responsibility and at least cover some portion of it.

- , Parker, AZ, USA

problem #51

May 102007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles

This is horrible had to have it replaced twice. Hope there is a class action to many problems with this thing going to trade it in.

- , Delavan, WI, USA

problem #50

May 012008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I am amazed at how many people have these problems. Who is going to start the class action suit?

- , Bakersfield, CA, USA

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