Notes: The 2006 Cobalt continued to carry the torch first lit by the 2005 model year. To be clear, that torch is burning bright with widespread power steering issues, electrical curiosities and a dangerous ignition switch defect which led to a massive recall by GM. This isn’t a great torch to carry.

The 2006 added it’s own special flare with gas leaks due to cracks in the “return portion of the modular reservoir assembly.” A recall of 2006 Cobalts was issued to fix the problem, but only to vehicles sold in or current registered in Arizona and Nevada, leaving other owners to pay for repairs themselves.

Between this car stalling while driving, giving owners fits with power steering failure and having it be a potential tinderbox because of gas leaks, we felt we had no other option than to award it our “Avoid Like the Plague” badge.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
12 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
7 / 3
Average Mileage:
118,358 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.

2006 Chevrolet Cobalt brakes problems

brakes problem

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2006 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #4

Oct 082013


  • 115,000 miles


First got a very small crack in windshield and next day splintered all way across, still have not replaced first Chevy I've owned that windows are crap. Speakers have not worked in front ever and only come on and work randomly now and than. Now brake fluid light constantly coming on even after a day I put fluid in. This is officially worst car I've owned out of all Chevrolet had!!!! basically all service to it costs as much as car!

- Yardville , NJ, USA

problem #3

Sep 282012


  • 78,000 miles
The vehicle has a recurring problem with the parking brake. The rear brake calipers lock up causing the parking brake to malfunction. The vehicle rolls away if not left in gear. The vehicle has experienced this problem three times over the past 15,000 miles.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #2

Jul 212013


  • 29,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that while driving 65 mph, with the cruise control activated, the brakes seized when depressed and did not deactivate the cruise control function. The contact crashed into a median strip and upon impact, the air bags failed to deploy. The contact sustained bruising, whiplash, and shoulder and neck injuries. The vehicle was neither repaired nor diagnosed. A police report was not filed. The manufacturer was not contacted. The failure was approximately 29,000..

- Harrodsburg , KY, USA

problem #1

Jan 092013

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 62,000 miles
While driving to work, steering wheel had been shaking (55mph). Getting off the belt line, traffic came to a sudden stop. I brake, but the car continued to shake and didn't brake. Had to pull to the side to avoid hitting the car in front of me. Car would not accelerate when traffic started up, and I had to turn the ignition off and restart. Car shook badly for a few seconds, then seemed fine. A few days later, driving into my parking lot (10mph) the car's brakes locked up for no reason and I barely got it into a parking space. Took it in to the dealership the car was purchased at and was told the rotors, brakes, and calipers would need to be replaced. Had another mechanic look at it and had the brakes and rotors replaced. Car drove fine. Six weeks later, driving on the highway (60 mph), slowed down to turn onto another road, and brakes were out. Had another mechanic look at the car, brakes and rotors are worn down again, as well as calipers and brake line. Road conditions were clear at the time of each incident.

- Madison, WI, USA

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