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.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
78,658 miles
Total Complaints:
22 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (21 reports)
  2. clean throttle body & fuel injectors (1 reports)
2006 Chevrolet Cobalt engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #22

Jun 112016

Cobalt LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles


After have the ignition recall work done, the car would occasionally randomly stall while driving. We brought it to the dealership twice, but they can find anything except a few misfires. At first the problem would only happen one a month or so. Now it seems to happen every few days, and it at the point where it is dangerous to drive.

- , Amesbury, MA, USA

problem #21

Apr 012015


  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

My 06 Chevy Cobalt SS keeps shutting off on me while I'm driving. I took it to a local GM dealer when the problem first started and they couldn't find anything wrong with it! My husband thought I was nuts! Well, until it happened when he was in the car with me. When it happens its always when I'm slowing down (usually under 20mph) and it just shuts off. The radio still plays though. So I have to put it into park and try to start it and in order to keep it running I have to rev the engine while starting it so it keeps running. Today it did the same thing to me but it was a little different. When I try to start it, it clicks and won't turn over at all. I am planning to take it to the shop tomorrow and they better fix it and not send me away saying there isn't anything wrong with it. They need to pull their heads out of their asses and listen to their customers. We aren't made of money and we aren't bringing it in for sh*ts and giggles. There is something clearly wrong and its their job to fix it! I hate this car and I cant wait to finish getting it paid off so I can get rid of it. DO NOT BUY A CHEVY COBALT!!!!!!!! You will be biting yourself in the ass in the long me!!

- , Dover, OH, USA

problem #20

Nov 062015

Cobalt LT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,474 miles

each time I have taken my car to dealership for repairs on a recall issues this problem occurs, the engine light come on and message ENG LOSS POWER AND THEN STALLS, CASE NUMBER IS 8158383287

waiting to here back from GM and Chevyland o Shreveport

- , Shreveport, LA, USA

problem #19

Sep 212013

Cobalt LX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles


My car suddenly stalled on a major highway just out of the blue. Fortunately I was travelling at a fast enough speed that I had enough propulsion to pull over two lanes and get onto the side of the road and restart it. Not sure what caused it. It started right back up again and has run since. The service engine soon light came on a few days later and though I have had it checked out, they have no idea of the cause. Can't get the service engine light to go off.

- , Madoc, Ontario, canada

problem #18

Dec 122013

Cobalt LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 2,245 miles

It takes several tries after putting key in the ignition switch to start the car.

- , Laurel, MD, US

problem #17

Jul 302013

Cobalt LT 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles

I'm having the same problem that every cobalt owner seems to have, My car randomly shuts off at low RPMs I have replaced the spark plugs and ignition coils with no luck at all! My mechanic is at a loss as to what else the problem could be , recently an engine code came on which reads multiple cylinder misfire we can't seem to fix the problem! and I'm really getting frustrated and considering buying a new car!

- , woburn, MA, USA

problem #16

Mar 012011

Cobalt LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,000 miles


I have a 2006 cobalt ls that i bought brand new and for the past year the engine has been shutting off completely for apparently no reason and with no warning. It kills backing out of my drive way, stopping at a stop sign, trying to cross an intersection I could go on for days. It always starts right back up. Just the other day it killed in the middle of a busy highway as I was trying to cross and someone almost hit me. I have a 7 month old daughter that I dread taking anywhere in my car cause I never know when this is going to happen. Its being brought in this week. This isn't even the only problem I've had with this POS. Had I known this car was going to be this much trouble I NEVER wold have bought it! Because of this car I WILL NEVER buy another Chevy!!!!!!

- , Metairie, LA, USA

problem #15

Sep 012010

Cobalt LT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

My 2006 Chevy Cobalt stalls randomly. Especially if the heater or air conditioner are running. The rpm's drop drastically making the lights flicker. I have talked to the mechanic about it and taken it into be diagnosed 5 times in the last year and a half. No one can find anything wrong with it. The dealer never hooked it up for a diagnostic test. I found out later because the engine control model doesn't work. He didn't tell me that of course. The last time I took it in, there were two other recalls on it that needed to be done and I wanted the problem fixed once and for all. He had me leave it for over two hours. I came back and he had not done the recalls and said his guess was the stalling problem was coming from inside the motor. He would have to tear it apart to get to it. He gave me an estimate of 1400.00 based on a hunch. He told me he would do the recalls and the repair at the same time and to make an appointment when I could leave it the whole day. I told him it might take me a while to come up with that much money. I asked if the car was safe to drive in the meantime. He assured me yes. My car had over 140000 miles on it by then. He didn't tell me the recalls were only covered up to 150000 miles. He never told me the engine control module doesn't work or that there was a "special coverage" on it (if it was done before 150000 miles). I took it to a competitor owned Chevy dealer to see if I would get the same kind of diagnostic and estimate and that's when I found out about the special coverage. Of course it was too late now as the car sat at 150100 miles. He said he promised to find the problem though, no matter what it took! He talked way too fast and pitched too many service memberships and extra upsells at me for me to trust him, but he talked me into doing an oil change. (I figured it needed it anyway) He said during the $40 oil change he'd be able to tell a lot better what the problem was instead of having to charge me $125 diagnostic fee. His quick switch in tactics made me spin on my heels and leave. After I left I realized he what making it seem kind of him "saving" me from an expensive diagnostic test, when in actuality he knew the diagnostics test wouldn't work and knew I didn't know at the time that the test was connected to the ECM coverage. They all know the ECMs don't work because none of them run diagnostic reports. They don't tell you they don't work or that they are covered for replacement. They don't know what's wrong with it without that report, so they guess at the problem with the most expensive prices they can think of and keep doing different repairs after that to rake in the revenue. Meanwhile cars with children in them are losing all power at high speeds on the freeway. Lives are at risk and yet they keep up the sherade. It is clear to me that if they know all these things and are not telling anyone and are not informing owners of the coverage that will let them know what is really wrong...they must be under orders from GM themselves. I'm guessing they made the car with faulty parts and systems that they knew could cause massive life loss, but put them out anyway because they were in the middle of a bankruptcy. So our cars are bursting into flames from the gas leaks, driving head on into traffic from loss of power steering and multiple car pile-ups from loss of power on freeways. There are also owner reports on this model of the seat belts not restraining you in an accident, the doors not unlocking and the air bags not deploying. I feel like I'm being led on a long walk down a short plank. I am on a mission to get a class action law suit filed on GM and hopefully the service managers too since they are all in on it. My experience with them constitutes fraud, theft, coverups, lies, reckless endangerment, gross negligence, and attempted vehicular manslaughter. I am outraged. Please everyone join me in this fight. It is not ok that our lives mean less than theirs and they continue to get away with this. This is intentional criminal activity. It stopped being just an issue about lemon cars and has become an obvious case of criminal intent.

- , Salt Lake City, UT, USA

problem #14

Nov 252011

Cobalt LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 175,000 miles

could get you killed if it stops idling on ramp to interstate

- , Augusta, KY, USA

problem #13

May 192010

Cobalt LT 2.2L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

I own a 2006 Cobalt LT Coupe. When the car had around 60,000 miles on it I began noticing that the car would idle very low when I would come to a stop or when I would start moving from a stop. It would idle between 300-700 RPM's and often the engine would stall. This happened several times at major intersections or when I would pull out of a side street and could easily have caused an accident if I had not pulled off the road quickly. I did some research online and was told to have the throttle body and fuel injectors cleaned out. I had this work done last week and the car is running like new again. I have had no more problems with a low idle or stalling. Also the dealership wanted to charge and arm and a leg, but I had the work done at Goodyear Auto Center for only $110. Hope this information helps anyone with the same problem. Thanks.

- , Destrehan, LA, USA

problem #12

Oct 022011


  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,000 miles


My car stalls when going down the road. It's very dangerous. I look at it as a death trap, but I have no choice but to drive it. When you turn the key to ACC it tries to crank without you turning the key over. THIS CAR IS HORRIBLE!!

- , Horn Lake, MS, USA

problem #11

Sep 232011

Cobalt LT 2.2L

  • Manual transmission
  • 56,000 miles

I just got my 2006 chevy cobalt and it had 50000 miles on it. And when i got my recall letter in the mail, i took it in and ever since, its had nothing but problems. first the clutch master cylinder went out. Then the slave cylinder went out. And now I'm at a stop light and go to take off and the engine stalls and go to start it back up again and it wont start. So luckily i was right next to a Circle K and so i pushed it in there. I jiggled the wires on the battery thinking it was not on securely. So i go to start it up and it works. So I start driving back home and it just starts bogging down and loss of gas pedal and there's nothing. So my dad pulls me back home and were looking at it and go to start it up and will not start. It cranks and everything but it just wont turn over. I don't know what it could be. I'm lost. Has this happened to anyone while driving

- , Casa Grande, AZ, USA

problem #10

Sep 092011


  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles

This is the fourth time in 3 months that my car as jerked violently and acted as though it will stall when I'm driving so bad that I've been forced to pull over and shut my car off.

So far each occurrence has been when I was going below 45 mph, but I do a lot of highway driving for work and am concerned it will happen then too. Once it happened as I was reversing out of my parking spot upon initial start-up of the day, once about 2 minutes into my trip while I was still in my apartment parking lot, once when I was about 5 minutes into my trip(today's) and once when I was on my way home from work about 10 minutes into my trip.

If I shut my car off for a minute and restart it seems to not happen again for a few weeks. A ding (similar to the one that sounds if the door is ajar or the passenger doesn't have their seat belt clicked yet) will sound before it happens so I have a bit of a warning. The ding has sounded in the past and nothing has happened but now each time it goes off my car does this.No service lights are on and I do not get a message on my screen that says why it is sounding or what is happening.

I hope I don't kill myself or someone else if this happens on the highway.

Update from Sep 12, 2011: After talking to a mechanic friend this complaint should have been listed under cylinder misfires..

- , Livonia, MI, USA

problem #9

Apr 042011

Cobalt Coupe 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

This car is a death trap. It goes dead in the middle of the road. It goes dead when you come to a stop. I was taken my children to school and my car died in the middle of the road and we were almost hit. This car need to be recalled because this is not the only problem i have with this car. First the radio stops working then the power steering went out, the front end started to shake, Rattling noise from under the hood, orders of gas, gauges don't work properly, uses a lot of gas, I had to replace the battery, Sometimes it want start. The Air works half the time. CHEVY COBALTS ARE DANGEROUS

- , Centerville, TN, USA

problem #8

Dec 162009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

This has happened now for the third winter in a row.Start car in morning for work and this "reduced engine power" shows up in the dash. No matter have much you let it warm up, you cannot get any power out of the car.If you are lucky you will get 40km out of it. I am sick of this. No one seems to know why this is happening. I hate it.

- , Ajax, ON, Canada

problem #7

Dec 052010


  • Manual transmission
  • 140,000 miles

My car goes off whenever the rpm get below a certain point and I dont know why. I was told to have the gas filter replaced and that would fix it and that has not helped. It still happens 5-10 times a day a lot of times in heavy traffic. I think there should be a class action suit or a lemon law looked into on this since so many are having the same trouble. Has anyone came up with a solution. I've looked at older complaints and this seems to be a real problem with this car and no real solutions. Some of the complaints go back to 2007!Anyone please respond what you did hopefully it wont cost a arm and leg.

- , Hilliard, OH, USA

problem #6

Apr 302010

Cobalt SS/SC 2.0L

  • Manual transmission
  • 68,748 miles

Problem Still Occurring Has been serviced more than 10 times in 5 months for sensors failing and electrical issues.

- , Manassas, VA, US

problem #5

Jul 162010

Cobalt LS 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

This is really pissing me off! I took it to a dealer and they replaced a couple of wires and said they still couldn't find the problem! It dies at red lights and when we were going to Tennessee on my honeymoon,the damn thing kept dying going down the highway!!!

- , Scottsburg, IN, USA

problem #4

Jun 132010

Cobalt LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,000 miles

Sunday thunderstorm...bad lightening. Afterwards, went out to go home from work, car won't start. My son and my mechanic came, could not start car. Towed to shop, horrible time for now fourweeks not fixed. FINALLY..some computer part[s] fixed...needed programing?? new keys?? and now still have not gotten car back. THIS IS IMPOSSIBLE...WHO WHAT WHERE DO I GET SOME HELP WITH THIS?? MY POINT is that my mechanic was unable to figure this out and GM had no help/knowledge of what/ this a lemon...or is it something that should NEVER happen?? I only have this car because it is what I can manage $$..and how much is this costing me [besides no transportation for 4 weeks, loss of income etc]. IF I wasn't still paying [family loan] on this, I would dump it...

- , Robbinsville, NJ, USA

problem #3

Jul 162009

Cobalt LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

This car is total s**t !! GM should consider the repercussions if any deaths occur do to the cars stalling. My car stalls several times a day every day. The key gets stuck in the ignition, the gear shift moves whether the car is running or not and the ball joints wear unusually fast. I have been researching this problem on many sites and there are tons of owners with the same problems. Step up to the plate GM and help us out.

- , West Mifflin, PA, USA

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