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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
58,245 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.

2010 Chevrolet Malibu electrical problems

electrical problem

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2010 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 6 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #24

Nov 242013


  • 53,896 miles


While driving on the highway, my car lost power. Several vehicles almost struck me on highway, very very, scary experience.. during driving, following messages appeared: 1)eng pwr reduced 2)service ESC 3)service traction 4)ESC off 5) service airbag. I also noticed the car shuddered extremely bad. The rear brake lights illuminated while I was not compressing the brake, and I had no acceleration. After pulling to the side of the road, the brake lights turned off. The RPM jumped between 3000-4000. After turning the car off and letting it sit for approx 5 min. The warning messages disappeared, however ses light remained. 2 codes presented today. 1)C0242 2)P2135. Will be contacting customer care, and taking car to dealer tomorrow. Extremely unsafe driving conditions. Not alone, many people have same issue. Car still randomly illuminating for service airbag.

- Metheun, MA, USA

problem #23

Nov 232013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 59,632 miles
Cpo 2010 Chevy Malibu @59K no known issues prior to explanations about 3 days ago I took my car in for new tires and had a mech check a clicking noise that I noticed when I would place the car in drive and begin to move. He stated that the noise was coming from where my cv enters the transmissions and believes there is play within a gear somewhere internally. I called the Chevy dealer and am due to bring in the vehicle tomorrow.... now here is the problem. While driving my car on the highway last night this random issue. The following warning lights came on: Engine light traction control light followed by the following warning messages: Eng pwr reduced service ESC service traction ESC off the car began to shudder as if it wanted to die. Along with this, I had no acceleration and thank god I was able to get to the side of the road as when this happened I was exiting a tunnel onto a bridge. After pulling to the side of the road I shut the car off and restarted it. All the lights continued to show, and the rpms jumped as seen in the attached video. I again shut the car off and waited about 5 min. After turning the car back on, the only light that remained on was the engine light. I gathered these codes this morning. C0242 P2135 -tps this is the second car in 2 years I have bought from this dealer, herb chambers of danvers, and this is the second car to have a transmission issue, on top of whatever else its doing. I still owe well over $10,000 on this car. I have not even had this car 9 months. I can tell you I am a grown man in tears because I work 44 hrs a week in a career I spent alot of money training for and now am having massive issues. I cannot afford to lose my job and the dealer could seem to care less.

- Metheun, MA, USA

problem #22

Jul 092013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 93,000 miles
I went to leave one morning and my car would not go into gear. Only when I pressed the brake pedal completely to the floor would it finally move into drive. After driving it a day or two my service traction and my service ESC lights have been coming on since July. And now today my cruise control stopped working an also my brake lights are not working correctly. When the car is in park they are off and will not come on. When the car is in drive they are on constantly.

- Belleville , MI, USA

problem #21

Aug 162012

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 55,000 miles


The brake lights on our 2010 Chevy Malibu, turn on while driving but turn off when the brake pedal is pressed. After tapping the brake pedal, the brake lights then stay off for approximately 4 seconds, then illuminate on their own again. When this occurs, the cruise control does not work and the service ESC and service traction warnings are displayed. This problem occurs intermittently and for varying periods of time.

- Blue Springs, MO, USA

problem #20

Oct 022013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 80,480 miles
Brake lights stay on even when pedal is not pushed. When pedal is pressed lights will flash off, brake lights basically working in reverse. I have to turn the car off for the lights to shut off. Almost was rear ended this morning due to brake lights not working properly.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #19

Jul 192013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 49,700 miles
This has happened 2 times, once a few days after purchasing the vehicle June 2010 at 400 miles, and then again on 7/19/13 after the issue was supposedly fixed by dealer.I was assured by the service department that this would never happen again after the repair in 2010, it did. This vehicle stalls while driving. On 7/19/2013 I was traveling on the garden state parkway in traffic and the car suddenly stalled. Everything went blank, the engine cut, no power steering, no instrument panels, no electrical what so ever. Thank goodness I was able both times to coast on to the shoulder on the highway without consequence, but without turn signals, hazard lights, access to on star or the ability to hand signal as the windows are out. After being essentially powerless, the car does turn back on after it resets the internal clock to 1/1/2009. Someone is going to get seriously injured or killed if this is not resolved, I was lucky to have not been hit both times. I am frightened that this will happen again and my job relies on me to travel long distances. This car is a death trap.

- Landing, NJ, USA

problem #18

Jul 182013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 50,157 miles


It was raining and my windshield wiper blades were on.immediately the blades stop working. L almost hit the fence because L could not see. My car is just 3years old, L do not understand why the blades will stop working.

- Detroit, MI, USA

problem #17

May 012013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 54,000 miles
My brake lights are faulty. They remain on while I am driving.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #16

Oct 162012

Malibu 4-cyl

  • miles
The brake lights will go on for no reason while I am pressing the gas and then when I press the brake, they will shut off. As well as when I turn on the hazards, my traction light will switch on and when I turn them off the light stays on saying "service traction" and then the left tail light blinker shorts out and pretends like it is going out and will blink rapidly. Then when the brake light issue is happening my cruise control will be faulty. There is a short or something happening with the wiring, it has been bad for a while now. I haven't gotten around to actually doing anything about it until I read this:

- Newton Falls, OH, USA

problem #15

Apr 182013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 63,000 miles
I drive in the city, an hour to work, single female on a budget and my car has been in the shop 3X for the same problem with no fix to it. I am furious, sick to my stomach and sad all at the same time. There are three issues that appear to be related: 1) brake lights come on when brake pedal is not being depressed, and stays on, and/or does not come on when brake pedal depressed. 2)"service traction" and "service ESC" warnings come on and remain on. 3) cruise control stops working. You can have one, two or all three of these events happening at the same time. Any of the three can occur first. They can occur each time the car is driven for some weeks, then not occur at all for a few days or occasionally even weeks. Can occur after driving for a few minutes, sometimes after an hour or more of driving. Seems to happen in all kinds of weather conditions, hot, cold, wet or dry. Has been happening intermittently for over a year now, and now seems to happen more often and for longer periods of time than when first began.

- Monroeville, PA, USA

problem #14

Apr 182013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 69,000 miles


Turning left into parking space, steering locked & warning light on. Turn car off, restart, no warning light & power steering works. Doesn't happen again for 2 days. Then flat tire warning light, ABS warning light & air bag service lights on. Turn car off. On restart ok. 4/20/13 power steering locks. Call dealer for service appointment. 4/24/13 turning left to dealer, power steering locks. No warning light. Don't turn car off "power through"& steering unlocks & works. Service tech advises there were 15 codes, some reporting "communication errors". cleared all codes. Test drove car, found no problems. Drove home - approx 50 mi - no problems. 4/25/13, approx 5 mph turning right to driveway, almost shuts itself off. Door locks on/off, on/off. 4/27/13, in parking lot. Start car, put in reverse. Car turns itself off. Restart -- runs rough about 10 seconds. Back up, power steering locks. Don't turn car off, again "power through" & steering works.

- Roscoe, IL, USA

problem #13

Mar 252013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 79,547 miles
I have a 2010 Malibu and recently took it too the dealer for a service air bag light and they informed me of a electrical problem that was supposed to be corrected under a recall, however now there saying I need to replace the driver side seat air bag and the passenger seat module. These air bags are a safety issue and there are many 2010 Malibu owners experiencing the same problems and the dealer wants to charge $1245.87 for repairs and cannot say why the failure happened. A vehicle of this age should not have air bag failure. There needs to be some sort of investigation on to why these air bags and seat sensors are failing for no apparent reasons beside the poor or cheap quality of the products there installing. I think that GM needs to stand behind there cars and trucks and not brush off such a huge safety risk. [xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Clarion, IA, USA

problem #12

Mar 152013


  • 64,965 miles
I purchased the vehicle in July of 2011 and had noticed a few times during winter that when I turned the steering wheel, sometimes the headlights would dim and the heater fan would suddenly slow down. Nothing really ever happened to make me think there was a serious issue. I would notice it would happen intermittently through out the next several months. Early in March, 2013, I had noticed as I was backing out of my driveway to go to work, the steering wheel would become much more difficult to turn and there would be a message on the dash that just read power steering. This would only last for a brief moment, and then it would go away and the steering would be fine. I thought it was from the cold weather. On Friday, March 15, I had stopped at a few different places, was having no issues that I could tell. I got into my car to leave the last stop, started the car and began to back out of the parking lot. I didn't see a message at first and it felt like I had a flat tire. About 5 seconds later there were 4 dings and the dash said power steering again and the steering wheel was very sluggish. I'd been half expecting it to start working again, but after speaking with a rep at an auto parts store, they told me it sounded like the electronic assist motor on the rack-and-pinion had shorted, causing a fuse to blow which was something GM had already put a recall out for other vehicles, except my model year. I spoke with the dealer and they told me that the only recall that was out on the car at the moment was an issue with the gear shift indicator and I will be taking care of that soon. They want me to take it in for diagnostics to see what GM will cover for repairs, but honestly I don't think I should be liable for a problem that GM didn't fix right the first time.

- Neenah, WI, USA

problem #11

Oct 082011


  • 51,729 miles
Driving down the freeway at night with my cruise control on. All of a sudden it turns off and I notice my brake lights illuminated in my rear view mirror. I tap the brake only to have them come back on. It kept doing it for about 20 miles then stopped. It has happened on numerous occasions and Chevy has failed to do anything about the problem. I feel unsafe driving this vehicle. I have all my documentation of dealer records for this.

- Lake Elsinore, CA, USA

problem #10

Aug 242011


  • miles
Driver side door could not be opened with manually from inside, or with the key or auto opener. Driver had to exit over the counsel and out the passenger side. When I turned it into the dealership, I was told it was the actuator malfunction and that they would replace it. They didn't seem too concerned that this was a new issue and what I believe a serious safety issue, in addition I have had to take this vehicle six times to the dealership because of the "service air bag" indicator light keeps coming on. Another safety issue that had a recall but was not fixed yet.

- Madison Lake, MN, USA

problem #9

Apr 282011


  • miles
A/C has strong mold smell. Smell is persistent even after A/C is not in use. Had it serviced twice, but dealership only sprayed anti-mold spray to subdue smell. Will need to go every month for this to be treated. Dealership explained smell is due condenser's condensation not being collected Malibu was designed not have a cabin filter.

- Whittier, CA, USA

problem #8

Jun 212010


  • 3,000 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the vehicle exhibited numerous electrical failures with the vehicle stalling, the dash lgihts, horn and cruise control would activate independently and sporadically and the rear brake lights illuminated without applying pressure to the brake pedal. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the vehicle was repaired. After the repairs the contact did not experience a failure. The approximate failure mileage was 3,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Charlestown, IN, USA

problem #7

Aug 012010

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 7,000 miles
2010 Malibu power steering malfunctioning less than 10,000 miles. I've been fighting with GM for many months to fix problems, engine knocking noise, air conditioning has mold smell. This car nearly cause accident because of power steering malfunction..this is a partial power steering malfunction car has had a major power steering malfunction to where you cannot turn steering wheel at has been in a shop 6 times dealers cannot fix problems or find

- Lawrenceville , IL, USA

problem #6

Jun 042010

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 1,900 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated while driving 25 mph, the vehicle suddenly stalled and began to accelerate. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the contact was informed that the transmission needed to be repaired. The dealer reprogrammed the computer and told the contact to only use high grade gasoline. The failure continued. The contact called the manufacturer who was currently exploring other remedies. The failure mileage was approximately 1,900. Updated 01/31/11 updated 02/11/11

- Franklin Square, NY, USA

problem #5

Sep 282010

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 1,006 miles
Brand new 2010 Chevrolet Malibu leaks when rains and it runs into my floorboard, airbags and wire harness causing car to short out. Most of the time the lights in dash won't work.

- South Boston, VA, USA

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