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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,239 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 Dodge Charger steering problems

steering problem

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2012 Dodge Charger Owner Comments

problem #19

Jul 102016


  • 100,000 miles


Takata recall I was leaving church and was about to stop at a gas station to get coffee and a doughnut like I usually do every Sunday. I was about to make a right turn into the gas station, my steering all of a sudden got stiff and the power steering warning light came on and my windshield wipers came on and it scared the day lights out of me. I had to go on the curb a little just to make the turn.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #18

Nov 302015


  • 82,100 miles
I started my vehicle and pulled out of my garage as I do each morning. As I went down the driveway at almost idle speed, I could feel a strong resistance (as if the emergency brake was on) and the power steering tightened up. Suddenly a strong burning smell filled the car, all of the lights on the dash came on and the ac fan blew on high speed. I immediately reversed back to the garage (100 feet or less) and was barely able to park. There was obviously something burning under the hood as the smell filled the garage. I turned off the car. When aaa arrived to tow it, the car was completely dead. The driver chose not to jump it for fear of doing more damage. My local trusted mechanic advised me that there was a recall on 2012 Dodge Charger alternators and he believed that it was my alternator that had failed. I had the car towed to arrigo sawgrass Dodge where they confirmed that the alternator had in fact failed and was burning. He said the recall did not include my VIN and that Chrysler would not cover my expenses. My 16 year old son and I were lucky we were in the driveway, lucky the fire didn't ignite while we were sleeping and lucky my son (a new driver) was not faced with a totally disabled vehicle on the road. According to the recall, this failure created a high risk of crash. Had we been on any road instead of my driveway, we could have been killed.

- Parkland, FL, USA

problem #17

Nov 302015


  • 82,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Charger. While driving 5 mph, the steering became difficult to control. The vehicle was able to be parked and all the warning lights illuminated. While parked, smoke appeared from the vehicle and then disappeared. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 82,000.

- Parkland, FL, USA

problem #16

Sep 172015


  • 37,000 miles


The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Charger. While driving approximately 10 mph and making a left turn, the steering wheel seized. As a result, the contact crashed into a ditch and the air bags failed to deploy. The contact sustained injuries that required medical attention. A police report was not filed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 37,000.

- Richmond , VA, USA

problem #15

Apr 192015


  • 52,300 miles
Night time @ 8:30pm, I was traveling 20W/59S towards the foster exit. Before I came upon the black warrior river bridge, I hit an unexpected pothole in the left lane and it bend and cracked the front driver's side rim and threw off the front alignment of my vehicle.

- Tuscaloosa, AL, USA

problem #14

Jan 212015


  • 49,800 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Charger. The contact stated that while driving at 30 mph, the steering wheel became difficult to turn. The contact had to apply excessive force to the steering wheel in order to turn the vehicle. In addition, the contact stated that the vehicle jerked and vibrated. The contact also stated that the wind shield wiper activated independently and all warning lights illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The VIN was included in NHTSA campaign number: 14V634000 (electrical system). The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 49,800.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #13

Sep 142013

Charger 6-cyl

  • 36,000 miles


I can barley turn at all. It is hard to turn at all. I took the car in Oct 4 and the said it is past warrenty and it will be 1800 to fix it. How can a car only 2 years old have this problem. They told me the car is safe to drive until I can afford to fix it. I have read many complaints online with a ton of other people with the same problem. Is there a recall" is this fair" I am a single mom of 3 kids and I have a newer car for reliabilty. And cannot afford this...

- Auburn, WA, USA

problem #12

Sep 012014

Charger 8-cyl

  • 43,300 miles
I'm a police chief here in Alabama, my department has six Chargers and the front suspension has been replaced in every one of them, some two or three times since purchased also power steering pumps have been replaced in several. This is recall!!!!!

- Eutaw, AL, USA

problem #11

Sep 222014

Charger 6-cyl

  • 37,000 miles
Driving to work, at about 45 mph, I saw a message on my dashboard read battery saver mode followed by a humming noise throughout the car. I then started to pull out of the freeway and my anti-skid lights flashed on and off, along with other unidentifiable dashboard lights. I managed to get into a gas station right before my car shut off completely. Per the dealer, alternator failure caused battery to shut down. How does an alternator fail on a car 2 1/2 years old? I have read so many complaints on this issue yet not recalls. Something needs to be done. I am still waiting to see if my extended warranty will cover costs, as I am 1000 miles out of my manufacturer warranty.

- West Covina, CA, USA

problem #10

Sep 192014

Charger 6-cyl

  • 49,098 miles
I was heading to work early am. Heading down the freeway, notice the battery save mode on the dash. By that time the radio shut off and didn't have A/C, started to blow hot air.I started to smell burning rubber. Almost didn't make it off the high before the car shut off. It was hard to steer, and lost brakes. Almost hitting a couple of cars. So I look up what battery save mode was, then check the forums. It is common in the 2011-2012 Chargers. I had to get the car towed to dealership.

- Port Charlotte, FL, USA

problem #9

Sep 132014


  • 60,000 miles


Complaint concerning: NHTSA preliminary evaluation #PE14022 on Saturday 9/13/14 I was driving home from the store on a residential road going 35 miles per hour and my vehicle began to flash the ABS light. Then the emergency brake light began to flash, the touch screen went blank. My radio and A/C shut off, the windows would not roll down. The mileage meter read 0, than started to read miles up to 80 miles per hour. I lost power steering, and the power brakes!! my car was 100% inoperable!!! I tried to coast to the side of the road, almost hitting several motorist and pedestrians as I had not control over the breaks!!! my daughter and I were almost killed B/C I was unable to stop or steer and almost had a head on collision!! I coasted to the side of the road, when my car completely died!! would not recognize the key, could not open the trunk, etc. I had my car towed to my Dodge dealer, they notified me that the alternator went out, drain the battery completely! the alternator on this car is too weak for the size of the vehicle! repairs cost me $1,500 total, not covered under powertrain warranty! this car is only 2 yrs. Old! this should not happen with a new car! I contacted Chrysler Corp. Office and they did not offer me any assistance! some one will die due to this type of vechicle flaw! there needs to be a recall on this issue!!!!!!!!!!!

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #8

Sep 082014

Charger 6-cyl

  • miles
Battery saver mode appeared on my dash. Wasn't sure what it meant so I told my husband to take the car to get a diagnostic test done. He went to auto zone to get it check and upon getting this done he stated "the car is going crazy" every light imaginable was appearing. The windows wouldn't go down, the radio stop playing, the steering wheel wouldn't move. In so many words the car just died.... I had to get my car towed to a service center once there I had to purchase a battery because they said the battery was dead. Once the battery was installed the car started again, but they couldn't test my car because there system wasn't up to date. So I was able to drive my car home. While driving home the battery saver mode light appeared again then the battery light appeared. I called the Dodge dealership near me and spoke to someone in the service department who told me that light indicates a bad alternator and that I will need to replace mine and being that my warranty has expired I will have to pay out of pocket and of course it is pricey.

- Laplace, LA, USA

problem #7

Sep 072014


  • 32,100 miles
A message appeared and indicated battery saver mode. I decided to go and get a picture of the message to show the dealership but when I turned the car on the ABS and traction control lights also turned on. The car was also making a screeching noise. I proceeded to drive around the block at which time a burning smell started. As I came around the block not faster than 5-10 mph the burning smell got stronger and the car started trembling and I couldn't turn it off or put it in park. The shifter would just slide up and down never parking. I couldn't take my foot off the break because it would keep moving almost wreaking into my husbands truck. Finally the car started trembling and other panel lights appeared and turned off.(transmission and engine light) finally the wipers came on for a few minutes. Prior to this I had already taken the car in twice for the ABS and traction control lights.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #6

Sep 032014


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Charger. The contact stated that all the warning lights illuminated on the instrument panel. The contact mentioned that the steering wheel then became difficult to turn and the brakes could not be applied. The contact also stated that the vehicle stalled. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic, who diagnosed that the alternator failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 80,000.

- Houston, MS, USA

problem #5

Aug 272014

Charger 6-cyl

  • 43,451 miles
While driving my entire instrument panel started shorting out. Before I was able to stop my car it completely died leavin me without steering capability. I couldn't even open the trunk where the actual battery is. The battery was completely dead. The problem turned out to be the alternator. I had to repair the alternator rotor and get a new rectifier and bearings. The manufacturer would not cover this under warranty. I believe this part was faulty and should be recalled. Apparently the premature failure of this part it is commonplace for this vehicle. I wasn't going very fast and was able to begin pulling over and slowing down. As it was I did not have enough inertia and was still partially in the road way. Had I been on the freeway, this could have been deadly. I did not even receive a battery low warning previous to this incident.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #4

Aug 282014

Charger 8-cyl

  • 58,000 miles
Driving on a turnpike with the cruise set at 75mph and the "battery safe mode" indicator came on. From then in a matter of seconds my radio first shut off, then my forward collision sensor, then my blind spot sensor. Then in the next following minute or so, every electronic device shut off and my car went into "limp mode". it was raining and my windshield wipers stopped working and I had to get to the side of the turnpike fast. With rush hour traffic all around me and me having to find my way through the traffic to the shoulder safely with no blinkers, power steering, windshield wipers, and my car would not run over 1200 or so RPM's. my car was slowing fast. By the time I got to the shoulder my car had died. I had it towed to my house. Tried to jump it with no success. I took the battery to get it checked not thinking about how I would get back into the trunk. I had to crawl through the back seat access to the trunk and pull the emergency trunk cable. Battery was fine after all, and turns out it was the alternator, which I figured from the start, I was just covering my bases. Next looking for a new alternator or to get it repaired, I could not do either. All places, pep boys, O'reily's, auto zone, and Napa did not have this alternator available. I went to get it repaired and they said the part I needed was on national backorder. My only way was to go to a dealership to buy a new one. Luckily no accident happened on the turnpike, but it was a dangerous situation and could have turned out very bad for me and my 2 year old son in the backseat. This is a problem Dodge needs to recall or cover the cost for it before someone is killed. The major safety concern is how the car deals with this failure and makes it completely unsafe to drive within a matter of minutes from the first indication of a problem.

- Yukon, OK, USA

problem #3

Aug 112014

Charger 6-cyl

  • 101,000 miles
While driving my several of my dashboard lights flickered while driving over 50 miles an hour (note: Although I selected 50 mph, I drove at varying speeds due to start/stop traffic - the initial issues happened at above 50 mph), I started smelling burning smell - likely wires and became concerned, I also heard a strange whizzing sound. I kept driving when gradually my car began to lose power, the dashboard notified me that it was going into battery saving mode and then less than a minute or two later, my power steering was gone instantly, the car stalled in the middle of traffic as I was coming around a turn, hoping to avoid an accident in the middle of rush hour. I was able to make it to the hill ahead and let gravity pull me into a safer place. I did not know what happened. I called for a tow truck and had no power left, not even enough to turn on the flashers. The car did not restart. I had the car towed to sears for a charging system diagnostic and turned out that the alternator was dead. The battery was also dead. I paid for a new battery and confirmed that the alternator was not charging the new die-hard advanced gold battery I just purchased. I had it towed a second time to take it to the Dodge dealer because I was informed that it was unsafe to drive it, even though the dealer was only 16 mins away that same day. The dealer confirmed that the alternator was dead. We will confirm main cause today. This car is a 2012 and I could not understand how a car that new even with 101,000 (a large % are highway miles) could have a bad alternator go that soon. So far, my bill will be over $1000 just to replace the alternator in addition to the $233 I had to pay for the battery at sears. More diagnostics are being done at this time. They mentioned that it was unrelated to any prior recalls.

- Lithonia, GA, USA

problem #2

May 142014

Charger 6-cyl

  • 36,480 miles
We were driving and the ABS and skid lights illuminated on the dash, all the function lights illuminated the steering column locked and the car just halted and stalled. Everything was dead, unable to start and the wipers were going. The wipers were never turned on but kept running despite the car being "dead" wipers in off position. Towed home and then to dealership (dealership has no off hour gate access) told (2) days later the battery was dead on a 2 yr old vehicle, then I received a second call stating the alternator was the culprit. The alternator needs replacement, and no one can explain the rhyme or reason why it needs to be replaced on a 2yr old vehicle. The vehicle also has automatic push start and will not work sometimes unless the remoteless key is pressed to start the vehicle on the start-button (instead of pressing with finger, use the remote less entry- I was told this resets the reading- having to do this once/twice a month).

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #1

Nov 072013


  • 50,906 miles
2012 Dodge Charger SXT plus has been driving differently, the shifter/gear kept sticking and would require two or three attempts to get it into the right gear, also heavy vibration under my feet and then the steering wheel started to make a loud whining sound, that they have yet to diagnose but stated more than likely it is a bad steering rack. My shifter has gone bad/malfunctioned and must be replaced and the corporate office (Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge) and the repair shop are giving me the runaround even though I took it to them more than once to address these issues.

- Riverview , FL, USA

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