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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
46,906 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 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2005 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #6

Jan 282009


  • 75,944 miles


More than six months ago I was driving at approx 55mph when my car started to "jump". reminded me of someone learning to drive a standard. Had car towed to dealership, no codes, did trans service, 1 qt low (approx $500 w/tow). Problem cont randomly, could not afford to take to dealership for them to play guessing game. Finally took in begin of Jan for ck engine light, no code, sent home. Few days later started acting up again. Let me will "jump" when shifting especially into 2nd, ck engine light on, T/C light on, speedometer gage goes goofy and "power steering" appears, oh and ticking in shifter. We have also had issues with the power steering going out. On 1/15 it started acting up while on freeway took it straight to the dealer. They pulled code P0742 and decided to replace transmission valve body (approx$2000). Picked up car on 1/19, next day eng light back on. Husband took to dealer told it would go off. Came back on beginning of this week. Last night on way to school & back experienced worse case yet. "jumping", ck engine, T/C an auto-theft lights on, ticking in shifter especially when breaking. When leaving school power steering wouldn't work, turned car off N on 3 times to get it to kick in. I do not feel that my car is safe to drive anymore. And with as many complaints as I have read today I do not understand why Chevy/GM has not found a resolution for this yet or done a recall. Will it take a fatality to get them to react"??" (1/29/09 sk).

- Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #5

Oct 202008


  • miles
I own a 2005 Chevy Cobalt 4 door. I've had numerous issues with the vehicle - from improperly fitting and noisy hub cabs to broken control arms... however I am writing about the shift control assembly. On 3-17-06 I took the car in to the dealer because the key would not release from the ignition. They replaced the floor shift control assembly. Now, since 10-20-08, I am having the same problem - again. And of course, the car is now out of warranty. I find it hard to fathom that this part should "fail" again in such a short time, if ever again. It would seem that inferior parts are just being replaced with more inferior parts. After reading similar complaints on this site - I see General Motors is content to create chronic and expensive headaches for Chevy owners. Never again GM.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #4

Oct 172008


  • 21,610 miles
1. there were no specific events leading to the failure, just normal driving. 2. this is the first time of the failure. The vehicle would not allow the key to turn completely off. In diagnosing problem, realized that the automatic transmission shift control would move through gears without the vehicle turned on. 3. the vehicle was taken to dealer and the shifter assembly was faulty and required immediate replacement. In talking to the dealer, this type of failure is becoming common, so much so, that they have repaired numerous vehicles with the same issue and are stocking the gear shift assembly for quick repair.

- Gibbon, NE, USA

problem #3

Jul 152006


  • 22,000 miles


2005 Cobalt door automatic.. since June-July of 2006, the automobile has repeatedly been taken to 2 different dealerships for repair or correction during the warranty period. The would act as to stall, shaky, and hesitate while driving. Each time the dealer said they were unable to find or determine the problem. Now, that the warranty is out and the car has done the same problem (July 10. 2008) the dealership says there is a problem and they will have to look farther into it.. I knew this was going to happen, the moment its out of manufacture warranty, they can find a problem with it.

- Orange Park, FL, USA

problem #2

Oct 242005


  • miles
I own a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. As I was driving the car I went to make a turn onto a street and all of a sudden the car shuts off and just comes to a complete stop. I wasn't going more than 5 mph when making the turn and I almost got re-ended because my car came to a abrupt and I almost got re-ended. I had to take the car put it back into park and restart. This is ridiculous this happened on 10/24/05, and this problem occurred 2 more times after for a total of 4 times B/C it happened previously on 10/2/05.

- New Hyde Park, NY, USA

problem #1

Jul 112005

Cobalt 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2005 Chevrolet Cobalt. The consumer stated when changing from park to drive heard noise in the transmission. The vehicle was taken to the dealership, they fixed a part on the passenger's side wheel. The vehicle is still having the same noise. When turning the steering wheel different noises were coming from the suspension.

- Kings Hill, VI, USA

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