Notes: The Cobalt was introduced to replace two of Chevy’s smaller cars, the Cavalier and Prizm. But the compact’s fresh start that Chevy was hoping for was riddled with issues, most notably widespread power steering failure.

The power steering failed so often that GM was forced to issue a recall in March, 2010. Great, but what about other problems like the key getting stuck in the ignition or all the other electrical demons this car possesses?

And, oh yes — then there’s the terribly dangerous issue where the Cobalt randomly shuts off while driving. As it turns out, that problem is related to GM’s massive 2014 recall for a dangerous ignition switch defect. A recall that eventually ballooned to 2.6 million vehicles in one of the automotive industry’s biggest scandals.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
31,621 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.

2005 Chevrolet Cobalt cooling system problems

cooling system problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2005 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments

problem #3

Dec 102009


  • 45,000 miles


Bought a new 2005 Chevy Cobalt. The car had serious air conditioning leaking problems right away that took over a year to solve. We were about to go lemon law on the car when Chevy came out with a service notice and got the leak solved. The car then had a headlight that would fill up with water and short out the head light. The dealer told me to drill a hole in the bottom of the headlight case and the water would leak out. The dealer told me to do this!!! the car recently started to have problems with the odometer jumping around while your driving. While that's happening the power steering locks up as the car is being driven. It happened the first time with my 22 year old daughter driving the car to school doing 65 on I95. Scared her and she had to try get the car over three lanes to the side of the road. She was able to do it and after restarting the car, the steering was working again. It took two weeks for it to happen again, this time on a side road as she is not allowed to drive it on the highway anymore. She is a student and needs to get to college. We have contacted Chevy and they tell us it's not under recall and it's going to cost between $600- $1200 dollars. It could either be the powersteering motor or the steering column. They won't know until they get in to the work. I looked on line and found a lot of other people with the same problem in the 05-06 model. This car needs to be recalled as the problem is going to kill someone on the road. The expense is both unnecessary and a burden in these tough times. My child is a student and does not need to shoulder this burden because of the bad engineering by Chevy. I know they are bankrupt and this is a burden we should not have to take. Some one is going to die!

- Boca Raton, FL, USA

problem #2

Jan 182007

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 49,862 miles
I have had my 2005 Chevy Cobalt since July 2005. At 800 miles I had it serviced for a leak in the passenger floorboard. It was in the shop 5 times before they found a fix. Next was the lights flashing on the dashboard, specifically the check engine, brake and high beam lights. Then the heater would not blow so it was in the shop to have that fixed. Then the reverse lights stopped working and there is condensation in the headlights. Now, two days ago, my power steering light comes on and it becomes very hard to steer. I almost had an accident when I couldn't turn fast enough. When you turn the car on and off it works again temporarily. I will be taking it to the shop again, but at this point it has 50,000 miles and is out of warranty. Very disappointed with the quality of this car!!

- Driftwood, TX, USA

problem #1

Oct 212005

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles
Three months after replaceing the radiator in my car from hitting a raccoon. I started the car and smoke came from the exaust. Took the car back to the dealership on Friday. On the following Monday I got a call saying "we can not find anything wrong" and drove the car home. The next morning I started the car and smoke came fron the exaust again, the same thing happend after work except the car started after turning the key a few times. The same thing happend the next two days it didn't want to start and after it did, it smoked for approximatly 10 minutes. That Friday morning was no different and the same with leaving from work untill I got 12 miles from away when the temperature gage came on, so I took it back to the dealership. There I talked to a different mechanic and told him what was going on and in less then a minute he told me what it was probably a cracked head on the engine. The following Monday and further inspection he was right in saying it was the head and needs to be sent out for repair. Now they are not willing to fix this problem saying that it is non warranty and we are stuck with all costs.

- Caledonia, NY, USA

Search for these popular complaint phrases...

Not what you are looking for?