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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
48 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 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2005 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments

problem #1

Feb 282005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 48 miles


Car purchased 2/21/05. Windshield fluid not in the car. Driving on highway mud was splash on window tried to wash it off, no fluid, mud smeared on window had to pull over on the highway to manually wipe off-2/05. Horn not working or was never put in, had to wait 3 days for replacement-3/05. Brake light coming on whether car is in motion or not. First reported 3/05 then again in 4/05. Told that the fuse may be going out. Still does this as of 9/05. Radio/cd player locks if you start the car an immediately adjust the volume have to restart car to unlock- 5/05. Back lighting for console does not come on all the time while in automatic mode. Unable to see speed if driving through a tunnel not well lit. Driver side tire making squeaky noises and grinding sound when parking in reverse. First reported 5/05 told may be brake dust still doing this as of 9/05. Appt pending. Headlight blew out 9/05. Back window passenger side not sealed properly you can hear and feel the wind coming in while on the highway its a pain. All of these thing were reported to dealer and General Motors on survey.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

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