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.


fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
14,360 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 engine problems

engine problem

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2005 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments

problem #2

Dec 212007

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 24,420 miles


The check engine light came on so I took the vehicle straight to the dealership. They said it was a history code and not a big deal, so they reset it. After leaving the dealership it came back on so I went to a different dealership. They said the same thing and said they don't know why it is coming back on.

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #1

Feb 222005

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,300 miles
We purchased our 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt in mid December. In the middle of January we noticed that the air conditioner was not blowing cold air. Dealership replaced the air conditioner compression valve. Approximately one week later the vehicle began to display the "check engine" light and read "power less reduced" then, we began to have difficulty accelerating. The gas pedal became stiff. The dealearship replaced the air conditioner compression valve once again. Again the problem surfaced about a week later. The same part was replaced once again, and an appointment was made for the following Tuesday to drop the vehicle off for further investigation. Dealership discovered a faulty wiring harness causing the problem. We were then told that this was an engineering problem with the vehicle. Proceedings are underway to replace the vehicle with another car.

- Acton, CA, USA

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