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pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
90,700 miles
Total Complaints:
19 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (10 reports)
  2. gm should recall (3 reports)
  3. replace speedometer stepper motor (3 reports)
  4. the cluster is under recall (2 reports)
  5. fixed.... (1 reports)
2003 Chevrolet Avalanche accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2003 Chevrolet Avalanche Owner Comments

problem #19

May 012012

Avalanche Z-71 5.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,000 miles


Numerous problems with the avalanche, too many to list all of them. Love the truck hate the issues!!


problem #18

Dec 152010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,000 miles

I complain to Allen Samuel Chevolet & Champion Chevelot about my speed o meter and other gauges on the panel not working but I was told it would cost $500 dollars to fix it. I did not have money at that time to fix it. I did not drive the vehicle often because of gas prices and as you know this vehicle is not cheap to drive every day; so I did not pay too much attention till this week when I receive my tax refund. I paid Champion $567.95 to replace the cluster. I would like to get a refund since this problem was on the recall list but no one informed me, even when I complain about it to two dealers.

- Stanley F., Missouri City, TX, US

problem #17

Sep 012011


  • Automatic transmission
  • 160,000 miles

Was pulled over for speeding. I explained to the officer that my speedometer was messed up. I thought sure he wouldn't believe me. Instead he asked me if my truck was a 2003, and I told him yes. He proceeded to tell me he had the same trouble with his truck, and knew several people with the same or similar problems. I told him of two people that I knew with the same problem. He said it is a shame that chevrolet doesn't stand behind there product any better than that, and recall and repair their faulty speedometers. The only good thing to come out of this was, he let me go with a warning. He also suggested getting away from GM. I love my avalanche, but doubt that I would buy another. I just don't trust GM to be there after the sell.

- Doug G., Fortville, IN, US

problem #16

Nov 012011

Avalanche 4.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,000 miles


speedometer sticks, reads 50mph at stand still, if I start the truck several times standing still, it goes back down to zero till it happens again, GM.. fix this crap or I will start a class action law suit..

- Gary R., Orland Hills, IL, US

problem #15

Mar 252010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

GM sent a letter to notify that the speedometer on my 2003 Chevy Avalanche may malfunction, but they will fix/replace only before 70K miles. Unfortunately! my speedometer malfunctioned at over 80K miles, called 1-800 twice and even sent letter to GM president and all my efforts were ignored. My Avalanche is my 5th Chevy vehicle and considered myself a loyal Chevy owner. I was just about to purchase either the Terrain or Acadia, because of this experience, I reconsidered my option and will NEVER buy any GM vehicle again.

- Ben C., Silverdale, WA, US

problem #14

Dec 292010

Avalanche Z 71 5.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,100 miles

This can be a safety issue not knowing your true speed. This is got to a factory defect since there is isn't any you due as a driver to cause the speedo to fail.

- Edward F., Redwood City, CA, US

problem #13

Oct 152008

Avalanche Z66 5.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles


I see Chevy likes to screw their customers on a speedometer repair. I've tried to find a cost effective means of fixing the problem myself but haven' had any luck finding a website that will service my '03 Avalanche speedometer. Has anyone found a site or shop that is reasonable?

- Lee B., MIami Beach, FL, US

problem #12

Oct 152009

Avalanche Z66 3.5L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 147,000 miles

I brought a 2003 Avalanche in 2003. My problems being about 3 months ago. I was driving & noticed my speedometer begin to go down to 0 while during 70 mph. I took it to the Dealer and the repairs would cost me about $1200.00.

- ODell P., Ft Gordon, GA, US

problem #11

Jun 122008

Avalanche V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 63,000 miles

Mine too! I first noticed it when I was traveling on the highway. I was in a 35mph zone. I glanced down at my speedometer to make sure I was traveling 35 (after seeing a state trooper) and lo and behold, my speedometer indicated that I was doing 110mph! I freaked out. I pulled over and called my Chevy Dealer and told them about the problem. They said that they've had several complaints and GM has done nothing to fix the problem. It would cost me about $500.00 to order a NEW part. I inquired about a warranty OR manufacture defect due to safety concerns. GM replied "Not happening." What? My speedometer still freaks out. Tickets? Don't even ask! Pissed? Yes! It still does it...when it wants to which is quite often. Hmmmm.

- mva, Reston, VA, US

problem #10

Jan 062010

Avalanche 1500 V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,000 miles

I am experiencing a strange issue with the speedometer. It appears to start at 52 and adjusts speed accordingly. I shut the vehicle down and restarted several times and finally the speedometer zero'd out as it should. I have not driven it since this writing and do not know if this can be attributed to cold weather or if it appears to be a defect as others experienced. I will inquire about getting this fixed at my dealership, but I will not be happy if this will cost $$$ to fix. It apperrs that this is a common defect and will search to see if it has recalls.

- usevansb, Double Oak, TX, US

problem #9

Dec 222009

Avalanche 2500 8.1L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles


Speedometer does not move off zero at all. After 15 min or so of driving it starts moving but is not accurate. I have no idea how fast I am going. Chevy dealer says $400 for a new cluster. All over the web is the same problem for 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007. GM and Chevy will not issue a recall even though its a manufacturer defect. They say it is not a safety issue so pay up or deal with it. That Bullsh*t. Step up and fix the problem you may just keep some loyal customers.

- Jason N., Cadillac, MI, US

problem #8

Sep 262009

Avalanche Z71

  • Automatic transmission
  • 53,000 miles

Never had a car or truck where the speedometer went bad. It always fails on the interstate. There should be a recall for this problem (safety).

Update from Oct 28, 2009: Local dealer replaced the cluster at no charge.... GM extended the warranty to 70,000

- Anton P., Prince George, VA, US

problem #7

Feb 012008

Avalanche LT2

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

I went to the dealership (I am a GM Certified Tech) that I used to work for they hooked up the scan tool, it released a code and they replaced the cluster (aka the speedometer) VERY fixable as long as you have warranty on it.

- Mike A., Mesa, AZ, US

problem #6

Mar 112009

Avalanche 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

Sometimes my speedometer works the way that it's supposed to. Other times it does it's own thing. i really had to learn how to drive and set my cruise according to the tach. If this is an ongoing problem with me and other Avalanche owners, this is an issue that needs to be recalled and dealt with. I don't want to go back to the dealer with it because all they want to do is steal my money and I'm not having that. I just want my truck fixed right the first time with no other issues. I DO NOT want to go postal over this. Besides this problem the truck runs and rides great.

- Joe D., Wilmington, DE, US

problem #5

Jan 152009

Avalanche 1500 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,500 miles

I love this truck. The only other real problem I have had with it was the vibration in the steering wheel which finally became a recall item. Hopefully by adding my complaint here, enough of us will get GM to recall for the speedometer problem which is absolutely ridiculous and dangerous for a car that has a sticker price of $40,000+.

EliH in Austin, TX

- Eli H., Austin, TX, US

problem #4

Nov 132008

Avalanche North Face V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

Last year in my 2003 Avalanche I was cruising on an interstate highway and I noticed my speedometer start to move backwards until it read about 25 mph, however, I wasn't slowing down. It was very concerning to me, so I first pulled over to look under the hood, but I found nothing. Currently the speedo does not operate at all, but I went through a few months where it would start to work partially after about an hour of driving.

This is unacceptable that so many people are experiencing the exact same problem. Obviously this part was sourced by GM in large numbers of faulty parts, and regardless of millage I believe I should be compensated to fix the speedo. I had no maintenance control over the life of the electronics, and it's not like if I had changed the oil more regularly I wouldn't have had this problem.

Chevy's are too good of trucks to have this kind of problem on so many of their trucks. I'm seriously considering moving back to a Ford truck because I owned a '95 Bronco that had 248k miles and never had an electronic problem.

- dre, Waxahachie, TX, US

problem #3

Jun 092008

Avalanche V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,000 miles

Speedometer never goes below 40 mph. Got letter in the mail wanting me to join class action lawsuit regarding this issue but it only covers the first 80,000 miles. This should be a recall issue. I currently own 4 GM trucks and SUVs. I will never buy another vehicle from GM

- mharge, Midland, TX, US

problem #2

Feb 012007

Avalanche 2500 V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles

I bought my avalanche 2 years ago. I also bought the extended warranty. Our speedometer stopped working about 1 year after we bought it. We took it in and were told that our warranty would not cover this as it's nit considered safety. COME ON!! Not knowing have fast your going is not a safety issue!! About 3 months ago I received a notice from Chevrolet stating there was a recall on this. If your vehicle was made in 2003 and you have less than 70000 miles. WHAT THE HELL!!! I had 71000 miles on my vehicle. They would not cover this. Why are they able to set a mileage on safety hazards. What is wrong with this. The majority of the time, I have no clue how fast I am going. Why isn't this a safety hazard. I live in a very small time and four of our friends have Chevrolets with this same problem. However, none of them can get theirs repaired under the recall because they have more than 70000 miles. Please continue to add complaints regarding this issue. I have put a complain in the ODI as well. I have searched and searched for this recall online and amazing - can't find it. WOW.

- Sabrina M., Cathlamet, WA, US

problem #1

Jan 022007

(reported on)

Avalanche Z6 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles

I've been very happy with my 2003 Avalanche until now when the speedometer started reading incorrectly, ie; reads 20 mph when really going 70!, or reads 120 mph when going 50! And GM won't do a damn thing to fix for less than $1.000.00! I found a guy on ebay to fix for $109 + $10 to overnite back to me. So if any one else ( and I know of at least 250 more like me who posted to ) has this same problem, do a google search on avalanche speedometer problems or go to ebay motors and search GM cluster repair. I've had other problems with the truck in the past but these were fixed under warranty, but this is so unsafe and has happened to most all of the GM line of trucks and SUVs that I can't believe GM won't recall these before people get killed. I also posted a formal complaint with the National Tranportation and Highway Safety association. I was going to buy a 2007 Avalanche but now GM can kiss my ass!

- winn, Washington, UT, US

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