Print this page Notes: The Chevy Astro is mechanically identical to the GMC Safari.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
31,400 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.

1996 Chevrolet Astro Van suspension problems

suspension problem

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1996 Chevrolet Astro Van Owner Comments

problem #5

Jun 152003

Astro Van 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 0 miles


I would like to report what I feel is/was a very serious safety defect with my 1996 Chevrolet all wheel drive Astro van [xxx]. recently while driving the right front suspension torsion bar snapped, collapsing the suspension, dropping the entire right side on top of the right front wheel and tire pulling drastically to the right across 2 lanes of traffic. Fortunately traffic was light, and I was traveling at a slow speed -about 40 km/hr in a posted 50km zone as I had just entered the 4-lane roadway. I managed to regain control of the van and steer it to the side of the right hand side of the road. I shudder at the thought if this had happened on the highway or freeway. The licensed journeyman mechanic that looked at the van indicated this was quite common on 90-96 all wheel drive vans stating that the torsion bar actually rusts or corrodes at almost the exact same spot (near the adjuster assembly) and eventually snaps completely breaking the torsion bar into 2 pieces! while he mentioned it was usually the driver's side (mine was passenger side) he indicated GM had recognized the problem and actually completely changed the design of both the torsion bar and the adjuster mechanism! however after contacting a couple of local GM dealers, they all told me was that this was not a product service bulletin related item or an official safety recall! yet they all had heard of it and just happened to have all of the parts in stock to the tune of $1000 (you have to replace both sides with the redesigned items). I found it surprising that they just happened to have 6 torsion bars and 6 adjusters in-stock; when I recently had to special order the rear door handle that had broken. I was told they only stock commonly replaced items at that time. The fact that it was redesigned tells me something. A component that is subject to wear should have some sort of published inspection process, wear measurement procedure or even a regularly scheduled replacement interval. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Calgary, 00, USA

problem #4

Jul 152003

Astro Van

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

- Westminster, CO, USA

problem #3

Aug 152003

Astro Van

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,000 miles
Torsion bar broke, dealer claims that it was a defect in the design of the torsion bar, the bar was to long. Now they have a shorter bar. I had to replace both sides with the new design because the original part was discontinued.

- Hasbrouck Hts, NJ, USA

problem #2

Mar 292001

(reported on)

Astro Van

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
ABS light is on, and when brakes are applied stopping distance is not normal. Dealer has been contacted. Consumer has had numerous repairs on vehicle, differential was overhauled, windshield wipers work intermittenly, fule injection system was repaired, ignition switch cylinder was replaced, as well as alternator, the entire ABS system has been rebuilt, consumer states rattle sound from front of engine drivebelt was replaced as well as tensioner, also fule/air filter was replaced. Automatic transmission was replaced. Front and rear shocks were replaced.

- Garden Grove, CA, USA

problem #1

Oct 201996

Astro Van

  • miles
Whenever driving approximately 45-65mph vehicle would vibrate excessively. Would have control of vehicle. Have taken vehicle to dealer on numerous times & had different parts replaced each time. The vibration problem still exists. Manufacturer knows about vibration.

- Norwood, MA, USA

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