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:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,577 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 suspension problems

suspension problem

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2005 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments

problem #5

Aug 162011


  • 68,902 miles


I have a 2005 Cobalt that has less then 70,000km on it and have recently been hearing a loud clunking coming from the front end of the car. I have just had a licensed mechanic look at the car and was informed that my front rear control arm bushings are completely gone and the car is now a hazard to drive till it can be fixed. With such low kms the mechanic had no reason or idea as to why they would be so far gone. I was advised that if the car was driven any further, the tires could fall of and the car would crash.

- Ingersoll, 00, USA

problem #4

Feb 012000


  • 116,369 miles
I have a 2005 Chevy Cobalt- the power steering is extremely difficult at times- the light comes on and off- showing a problem is present- I am unable to turn the car normally- making me use two hands-also, there is a rattle in the back- left- very noticeable- to all in vehicle.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #3

Jun 102008


  • 62,000 miles
Feels like an accident waiting to happen. Rattling front end noise for a few months and with my 60K mi check up it's discovered that I need 2 lower control arms (the bushings are gone) and need to replace the front struts and rear shocks as they are leaking. I have always owned a Chevrolet and find this appalling. My Cobalt is only 3 yrs old and needs to replace major equipment. I had an old Chevy and never had to see a replacement like this until I had over 100K mi on the vehicle. I cannot find any recalls on these parts, but see many complaints. Even the dealership thought I should get rid of the car"?????" given the current times, who could afford that. So now I am looking at an estimate of $1821.40 to fix this. When is GM going to step up to the plate and acknowledge this problem with this vehicle.

- E. Boston, MA, USA

problem #2

Aug 182006

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,390 miles
: the contact stated the steering shaft was replaced twice due to a rattling noise heard when going over bumps in the road. The steering shaft was last replaced was 8-11-06 but the rattling noise continued. When the steering wheel was turned to either side, a grinding noise was also heard. The rear bushings were replaced once due to the vehicle bouncing all over the road. Soon after, there was a grinding noise heard when the vehicle was put into reverse. The dealership was alerted.

- Middle Grove, NY, USA

problem #1

Dec 262005

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,226 miles
12/26/05 at 3:30 P.M. on interstate I-495/wilmington, de bypass. Road straight with no debris and dry. Heading southbound in the far left lane of a three lane divided road. Gaurdrails on both sides. Doing 65 mph/speed limit. Center lane was a walmart semi tractor trailer doing 62 mph. In front of my lane near the front of the truck were two cars about 5 car lengths ahead. My car jerked radically to the right and then back to the left twice in rapid succession. The car then jerked violently to the right and the left front of the car impacted the back bumper of the truck. The truck driver felt a bump and started to brake. My car rotated clockwise until I was going down the road backwards about 50-55 mph in the first lane alongside the stopping truck. The car pulled again to the right and the rear of my car impacted the guardrail. The rear window exploded and I felt cold air. The car rotated again, this time counter-clockwise until I was going down the road backwards again. Speed was about 30-35 mph at this time. The car again pulled to the right and there was no guardrail. My car came to a stop in the green strip in the center of the interstate at about a 45 degree angle facing southbound. The driver's side door was damaged and I had to force it open to exit the vehicle. It was then that I discovered the left rear tire had come off the vehicle and was about 50 feet away on the inside shoulder of the road. All four lug nuts were still on the tire and it was still inflated. The Delaware state police responded and filed a report. The insurance adjuster took pictures of the car at the towing facility yard and the damage was noted. There was damage to the front side of the car and the rear. The right side of the car was basically intact. Left side of car was completely destroyed. The left rear wheel assembly was completely destroyed including the brake drum, shock, spring, axle, housing and all rods and connections. The car was a total loss.

- Lewes, DE, USA

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