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.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
21,500 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.

2003 Chevrolet Malibu brakes problems

brakes problem

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2003 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments

problem #6

Jan 282003

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles


Front brake/rotor/caliper failure. I have had my rotors, front pads and calipers replaced numerous times rotors 4 times, calipers 4 times and front pads 16 times due to faulty design, the calipers hang up and do not release all the way causing the inner pads to wear abnormally.

- Hamilton, NJ, USA

problem #5

Aug 152005

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 28,000 miles
Front brake pads and rotors keep needing to be replaced. Car was purchased new in Sept of 2003, need new pads/resurfaced rotors at 13,000 miles and again at 28,000 miles.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #4

Feb 242005

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 35,000 miles
Brake problems resulted in minor accident. 2 weeks following accident brake noise began. Inspection revealed that only the inside brake pads on each front wheel had failed, indicating faulty brake design. Numerous service bulletins are noted for brake related issues for this vehicle are posted on the NHTSA site. GM refused to assist claiming normal wear.

- Northwood, OH, USA

problem #3

Jan 012004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 11,000 miles


In the past year I have replaced the front brake calipers 2 times and the pads a total of 6 times due to the calipers hanging up and not releaseing fully.

- Jackson, NJ, USA

problem #2

Apr 212004


  • miles
Consumer had to change brakes 3 times. While driving consumer heard a grinding noise in the front of vehicle. Consumer took vehicle to the dealer the first time, and they replaced the brakes. Then, brakes malfunctioned again, and consumer took the vehicle back to the dealer. This time they turned the rotors, and put on new brakes. The same type of noise was heard again. This time, when she took the vehicle to dealer for checking and repair, they replaced the master cylinder/calipers/ rotors, and put on another set of brakes on the vehicle. After consumer picked up the vehicle from dealer brakes still were not working properly. Consumer took the vehicle back to dealer, but was told by dealer it was just a matter of tightening up some screws.

- Calhoun, GA, USA

problem #1

Jun 012003

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I have had serious brake wearing issue, in one years time a total of 40,000 mi I used 3 sets of brakes pads for this car.I had have brake calipers changes, in front (loaded) and rear wheel cylinders, (2), and new drums for rear brakes. Brake continued to be a problem and have had completely bleed the system at Chevrolet dealer. Now I have turn signal problems. They work when they want to. Due to my busy work schedule I have been unable to have repair done. Chevrolet repair hours are limited. My commute is long over 60 miles one way. It is often very difficult due to turn signal failure at critical moments.

- Middletown, NY, USA

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