Print this page Notes: Widespread instrument panel failure is a common and frustrating reality for many 2004-2005 Chevy Cavalier owners. They're often left in the dark when it comes to knowing how fast they're going, what their engine temperature is, or even how much fuel they have left in the tank.

The likely culprit is a series of bad "stepper motors" which control the gauges and are no longer covered under warranty. Think not being able to see your speed is a safety issue and should be recalled for all owners? We'd agree. Trouble is, apparently the NHTSA does not.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
24,000 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.

2004 Chevrolet Cavalier electrical problems

electrical problem

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2004 Chevrolet Cavalier Owner Comments

problem #1

Apr 052006

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 24,000 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Cavalier. While driving 5 mph, the engine intermittently stalled. The failure occurred while making a turn in first gear. The RPM decreased to 400 RPM and there was a loss of power steering. When the vehicle stalled, the contact released his foot from the clutch and the motor increased the RPM's automatically. When the key was turned in the ignition, the vehicle failed to start intermittently until approximately ten attempts. While driving 55 mph, the speedometer displayed 30 mph. When the gas tank was full, the fuel gauge would display half a tank. The temperature gauge also malfunctioned. The vehicle would not overheat, but the gauge would read hot. The dealer was unable to diagnose or repair the failures. The failure mileage was 24,000 and current mileage was 37,500.

- Dupont, PA, USA

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