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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
20 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
80,024 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 Malibu steering problems

steering problem

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2006 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 19 of 28)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #194

Dec 282010

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 85,000 miles


Steering problems. I was in a turning lane with my son in the car. I heard a ding and power steering showed up on my display. I had no power steering! I am a small person and could barely turn the car and stay in my lane. When I got home I turned the car off for awhile, then went and turned it back on and the car was fine. I have driven the car only when I need to because I am afraid to drive it. I heard it will happen again. The car goes into the shop 1/3/11. There is also a knocking noise in the front end when I make a turn. Exterior lights. I've had to replace my head light bulbs about every three months this past year. Because of the lights going out. First one side then the other.

- Island Lake , IL, USA

problem #193

Dec 202009


  • 75,000 miles
Steering wheel locks up while driving - happens at random - at all different times. Dealer acted like it was no big deal and of course they want me to pay for it when I have now found out that I am not the only one complaining about this problem. It is dangerous, and it could cause fatality. Problem seems to go away for a while after I change out the spark plugs. But I am at 160,000 miles and on my 8th set of spark plugs. Something is not right, spark plugs should last longer than 20,000 miles. GM should take this complaint seriously before someone is killed. Something is wrong, otherwise why would there be so many people complaining about the same problem. I am working at paying off this car as fast as possible so that I can get into a safer vehicle. Sadly, I will *never* buy a Chevy again :-(

- Frazier Park, CA, USA

problem #192

Dec 152010

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 101,448 miles
2006 Chevrolet Malibu. Steering electric power assist system fails as you are driving. Complete loss of steering assist. Must stop car, turn off engine. When engine is restarted, power steering is working again.

- Mt. Pleasant, SC, USA

problem #191

Dec 012010


  • 105,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated was driving 20 mph when the steering wheel began to exhibit an unusual noise when turning and began shaking excessively. The failure occurred intermittently for a period of one year until most recently when the failure became ongoing. The contact was concerned that the steering capabilities would fail and potentially cause a crash. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing or repairs. The failure and current mileage was 105,000. Updated 02/02/11

- Carthage, MO, USA

problem #190

Sep 042006


  • 84,000 miles
My steering wheel have been jumping to the left even while parked. Then my power steering message came on. It locks on me while I'm driving and I have to pull over and turn the car off then back on. It started happening about once a week, but now it happens twice if not more times a day. After I bought the fluid I learned that it's a motor and needs to be replaced. I called Chevy and they told me my motor has to be replaced and will cost me over $600. I don't think that I should have to pay for all of that myself. I've read a lot of complaints and this is making me want to trade my car in. Now may car has over 100,000 miles but the problem started at about 83,000. I have kids and when it locks up while driving on the highway, it's too dangerous.

- Dallas, TX, USA

problem #189

Mar 162009


  • 74,000 miles
Loose of power steering, GM has extended the warranty on this part, for 10yr or 100,000 miles, our car has 126,000 miles when this was issued, but we have documentation that we were having the trouble at 76,000 miles but GM does not want to help us with the problem, we ask to talk to a supervisor but no one will call us back. You can be driving down the road and turn into somewhere and a bell will go off and you have no power steering, you have to turn off the engine and restart it to regain power and some times it is a short time before it happens again. The dealership told us the steering column would have to be replaced. The cost to repair this is over $600 and we can't afford it. Our car is a 2006 Malibu.

- Gore, OK, USA

problem #188

Oct 082010


  • 88,000 miles


I owned a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu, in which I have only had 1 1/2 years, the factory warranty just expired 3 months ago. I am now having very serious problems with the power steering (eps) it has a tendency to go out on me everytime I turn left if I turn the wheel all the way to the left or if I just turn it a little bit just enough to make the turn I can fill the stiffness in it as if its getting ready to shut down, this has happen off and on for 2 weeks now and once it shuts down I have to cut the car all the way off and crank it back up and then the power steering is restored, this never happens when I turn to the right it just go along as if nothing is wrong. I consider this pretty dangerous because it can happen to me in traffic after making a left turn and get me hit in the rear seriously. I have been online reading some of the other comments with the Chevy Malibu and all them seem to experience my problems as well. I have made an appt at the dealership to have it looked at to see what officially is the problem with it and have it fixed.but, I really think there should have been a recall on all the vehicles with the electrical power steering because there is a glitch somewhere in the system that is killing the consumer's pocket. Is there a rainbow at the end of this tunnel?

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #187

Oct 022010


  • 85,400 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the steering wheel suddenly locked up; he had to jerk the wheel so that it would move. The failure occurred everytime the vehicle was driven. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the contact was informed that the steering module needed to be replaced. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer had not been notified. The current mileage was 85,528. The failure mileage was approximately 85,400.

- Vernon, CT, USA

problem #186

Sep 232010


  • 50,000 miles
On a 2006 Malibu, the electrical assist has been replaced three times in the past 10 months. Each time the steering locked up while driving on the interstate luckily. In 5 days, the car gets taken in to have the steering column and rack and pinion steering replaced. The first failure was at approximately, 50,000 miles, the second was at approximately 65,000 and the third at about 80,000. The car is at 95,000 miles now which is a lot, but to have the power steering replaced at a certified mechanic soon to be 4 times within a year is not good. The electrical assist power steering and all associated designs is unsafe as the wheel is impossible to turn when failure occurs.

- Rio, IL, USA

problem #185

Sep 262010

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 48,000 miles
The power steering will go off as you are driving. Sometimes it will just become harder to steer as you decrease speed, and sometimes you have to stop, turn off the motor and the steering will reset. Very disturbing and quite dangerous.

- Dover, AR, USA

problem #184

Sep 272010

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 50,000 miles


I've only owned the 2006 Chevy Malibu for about a year and never had a problem with the power steering but on 9/27/2010 I was making a slow turn into a school lot and the steering went out thankfully I was already coming to a stop. It also has always made a noise when turning however I do not know if these problems are related. I contacted my local GM dealer and they said to bring it in so we'll see what happens.

- Hemet, CA, USA

problem #183

Mar 012009

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 71,000 miles
When turning steering wheel at speeds under 30 mph, electric assist power steering will frequently shut down, with warning chime sounding and "power steering" warning displayed in the driver information center (dic). The car can still be steered but requires considerably greater effort than a car with manual steering. Once the car is pulled over, turned off and restarted, it "resets" itself, and operates normal again until the next time it occurs. The problem started in March of 2009, with 71,000 miles, and has gotten steadily worse over time. It now has 105,000 miles on it, and now happens so often (about 12-15 times per day), that the car is almost undriveable. I've contacted 3 different dealers, who all tell me the entire steering column needs to be replaced at a cost of approx $1100, as there are no "serviceable" parts in the electric steering system. As I understand it, this is the exact same steering problem that GM issued a recall for in March of 2010, for Chevy cobalts and Pontiac G6's, but won't recall Malibu, because there haven't been "enough" complaints filed yet. I don't have $1100 to for a new steering column that GM has admitted is a problem in it's other vehicles, but won't recall mine because not enough owners have yet to file a complaint!

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #182

Sep 142010


  • miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. While driving approximately 15 mph the steering wheel became very stiff and a power steering service light illuminated on the dashboard. The vehicle was pulled over and shut off. Upon restart the vehicle operated as normal. The vehicle was not taken to have the failure diagnosed. The manufacturer was notified and she was informed her vehicle was included in an unknown special campaign and they would pay for the repairs. The vehicle was not repaired when the complaint was filed. The failure and current mileages were unavailable. The VIN was unavailable.

- Highlands, NC, USA

problem #181

Sep 172010


  • miles
I was staying at a friend's house in san antonio because I had a court setting there. The morning of the incident, I turned on my vehicle and was headed to the courthouse. I was about two blocks from my friend's home when I heard a ding and a power steering message popped up on the radio. My power steering immediately went out, and I pulled myself into an apartment complex and turned off the vehicle. I called a friend for a ride and was about to call aaa when I realized I was in the way of a school bus picking up college students from the complex. I turned the vehicle back on to inch up a bit, but I noticed that the power steering was working again. I returned to my friend's home, got a ride to the courthouse, and researched the issue online. I found several other reports of this kind of thing happening and that it was most likely a computer glitch that could and would occur again unexpectedly. I took my chances driving back home to austin that same day and did not touch my vehicle over the weekend. Now that it is Monday, I will be calling GM customer support.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #180

Mar 102010

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 53,000 miles
My 2006 Chevy Malibu has had the electric steering go out on it twice and I can feel that it is now going for a third time! I purchased it new. It only has 55,000 miles on it. Steering is serious and I am afraid it might go out when I am on the highway!

- Pardeeville, WI, USA

problem #179

Sep 012010


  • 90,000 miles
The power steering on my 2006 Malibu stops working when accelerating or maintaining speed up hills. When the accelerator is let up the steering starts working again. If you are in a turn when the power steering starts working again the car jerks drastically in the direction the tires are turned. This started around 90,000 miles.

- Hiawassee, GA, USA

problem #178

Apr 152010

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 43,288 miles
I have 2006 Chevy Malibu my friend has 2006 Chevy Malibu both vehs made in the Kansas City plant she rec'd letter that was a problem with power steering and to bring veh to GM dealer I did not get that letter called GM they said my vi# is not included but I had that same problem in April 2010 and had it repaired $598 they said because my VIN # is not on list will not honor it I have contacted BBB and attorney generals office and said should contact this office. Any help for me on this.

- No Uxbrige , MA, USA

problem #177

Aug 012009


  • 75,000 miles
The contact owns 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving 20 mph, the power steering warning light illuminated and the steering wheel locked. She had to use extreme upper body force to turn the steering wheel. The contact stated that when the failure would occur, she would shut off the vehicle for at least twenty minutes and the power steering would reset itself. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer will be contacted. The failure mileage was 75,000 and the current mileage 95,565.

- Calexico, CA, USA

problem #176

Feb 012010


  • 65,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. While turning at approximately 5 mph he could hear a popping noise coming from the steering column. Over time the failure progressed and recurred whenever he made turns while driving at any speed. While turning over bumpy surfaces the failure was more pronounced. The vehicle was not taken to be examined for the cause of failure and has not been repaired. The failure mileage was 65,000 and the current mileage was 71,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Versailles, KY, USA

problem #175

Aug 162010


  • 16,300 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact received notification of a safety improvement campaign and warranty extension due to a possible steering defect in her year, make and model. The contact stated that if the manufacturer would send out such a letter calling for special coverage, then it should be under recall. She was concerned that she would lose power steering while on an expressway and not be capable of pulling over. The contact experienced no failures at the time of the complaint. The contact called the manufacturer to inquire about having the part replaced to prevent any possible failure and she was advised that the warranty would only be extended if the failure actually occurred. The current and failure mileage was approximately 16,300.

- Dayton, OH, USA

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