really awful
Crashes / Fires:
33 / 4
Injuries / Deaths:
22 / 5
Average Mileage:
55,252 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.

2008 Chevrolet Cobalt steering problems

steering problem

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2008 Chevrolet Cobalt Owner Comments (Page 4 of 12)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #163

Dec 072014


  • miles


I was driving on the freeway when I changed lanes and lost control of my vehicle. My anti-lock braking system did not work as it was supposed to; my traction control did not work as it was suppose to, which resulted in me losing control of my vehicle and hitting another vehicle. A month earlier, I took my vehicle to rancho motor company to have a recall part on my vehicle fixed. They noticed that my ABS and traction control lights were on. They ran a diagnostics test on the vehicle. When I picked up my vehicle, they informed me there was nothing physically wrong with my vehicles ABS and traction control systems but the software was outdated and needed to be updated.

- Barstow, CA, USA

problem #162

Oct 292014


  • 65,800 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving approximately 15 mph and making a turn, the steering wheel became difficult to turn without warning. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 65,800.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #161

Sep 182010

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles
The steering locked and hit a tree. The passenger side air bag did not deploy. Passenger died. Driver was air lifted.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #160

Apr 302010

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 38,238 miles


I am the very unhappy driver of a 2008 Chevy Cobalt with 4 recall repairs to date. I reported noticing problems with the power steering, struts and interior dashboard lights as early as Sept 2010, while having routine service done to my Cobalt. (the interior dash digital read out lights have always given misinformation and would dim on a regular basis.) I've recently been experiencing the power steering totally going out on my car (once on June 25, 2014 and again on Sept 4, 2014) which makes it practically impossible to steer my car. I've been involved with these recall issues since 2010 and have followed GM's instructions to have the repairs done, only to have continuing problems with the cars performance. It's not only a inconvenience, but is stressful and dangerous to continue driving this vehicle. I've requested to have GM help me get into another car more than once over the past few years, but have been denied. Now I've been told that GM has implemented a new "buy back program" for drivers such as myself and have requested they get me out of this vehicle and into another car, but again, have not been contacted concerning my request.. I can not and do not want to be without a car to drive and feel that I deserve to have my car replaced by General Motors at no cost to myself.

- Santa Fe, NM, USA

problem #159

May 312013


  • 65,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. While driving various speeds, the power steering warning indicator illuminated and the steering wheel became difficult to control. The contact heard a chiming sound before the power steering failed. The contact stated that the failure occurred after the ignition switch was replaced. The dealer diagnosed that the motor kit needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 65,000.

- West Plains, MO, USA

problem #158

Jul 092013


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that the steering wheel became difficult to turn. The failure recurred multiple times. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer for diagnostic testing. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 90,000.

- Charlestown, RI, USA

problem #157

Dec 212008


  • 7,000 miles


Ignition 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. December 21,2008 changed my life forever. Driver was killed in a one car crash, where her and her car were thru to the street below on 6-35 and high dr. The car went airborne she was thrown out the car but was saved enough to be transported to the hospital where she later died. The car was not so lucky it landed and rolled to a stop at the bottom of the bridge, in which the car was scatter in many pieces. There was physical not much left of the car. The car would have been going the speed limit it would have by passed the opening and landed on the other side but because it was slow going it resulted in her death. There was a reenactment done but the finding were in conclusive on how she died. She lost control after getting on the highway. I checked for recall on her 2008 Cobalt and there were none at the time of her death. Her older sister want to know if this could have been a result of the power steering problem. I started looking for recall right after her death and did not find any and did not know what to do but now this national recalls for the Toyota then the voluntary recall done with GM recently opened our eyes that this young woman death could be the result of faulty car. Please let me know what is need to be done to file this complaint. We have suffered a great loss. She was a good drive and the conclusion that has been made has been none. We just don't know what happened. This was report several time back in 3/ 2010 and 6/10 as complaint with the steering.... I have contact GM as of recently because recalls and her call was one of the parts that was in that recent ignition issues. There were not skid mark with the reenactment done there was no reason why her call did not show brake or skids. I believe this to be part of the recall cover up my GM!!!!!

- Kansas City , MO, USA

problem #156

Jun 102014


  • 45,000 miles
While driving the power steering quit working. I had to pull over and restart the car. After the first time it happen it happen every time I drove the car.

- Monroe, MI, USA

problem #155

Jul 012014


  • 76,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that while attempting to accelerate from a traffic sign, the vehicle failed to turn and the steering wheel continue to spin uncontrollably. The vehicle was taken to a dealer, who verified that the steering failed. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 76,000.

- Wadsworth, OH, USA

problem #154

Jun 032014


  • 108,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that while driving approximately 30 mph, the vehicle lost power steering and the steering wheel was very difficult to turn. The contact stated that something snapped and the steering became uncontrollable. The contact crashed into the side of a building. There were no injuries. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 108,000.

- Hazard, KY, USA

problem #153

Jul 012014

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles


2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. Consumer writes in regards to sway bar, power steering and ignition switch problems. The consumer stated the day after the vehicle was purchased, the sway bar links failed. Updated 07/30/14

- Marion, IL, USA

problem #152

Oct 102012

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 92,000 miles
Was driving down the road on the way to work and the power steering stops working, continues to randomly shut off.

- Caneyville, KY, USA

problem #151

Apr 142014


  • 100,000 miles
My 2008 Cobalt ignition locked up while parked. Car was towed to Chevrolet and they switched it out. Had no ability to turn key, wheel or anything. Everything locked up completely. I finally got my Chevrolet Cobalt back (2 months) from the dealership with a brand new key for the ignition. Went to get into the car and they didn't switch the door locks. Now they cut corners and refuse to pay for or change my door locks so I have to carry around 2 separate keys. I have called Chevrolet customer service and they say it is my fault. I have heard of several other owners of Cobalts or owners of Chevrolet that had the same thing happen.

- Bourbonnais, IL, USA

problem #150

Jun 022014

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 81,000 miles
On two seperate accounts, as I made a right turn at a stop light, the steering locked mid turn causing me to proceed into on coming traffic. This Cobalt has already had a recall on the power steering assist in 2010. I have had the Chevrolet dealer ship run a diagnostics on the car and they have confirmed 3 things. The issue is with the power steering assist, the problem is getting worse as the car is driven more and is unsafe to drive, and also that this is not wear and tear and that there is nothing preventative that could have been done to prevent this other than replacing the steering gear box entirely. GM has refused to acknowledge this issue we are having and claims that we are responsible for this fix entirely because the factory warranty has expired. I have asked them to consider the safety of my family and help me fix this issue and they have not changed their position. This car has had 4-5 recalls in the last 5 years and there is already documented problems with the power steering of this car.

- Mesa, AZ, USA

problem #149

Jun 072014


  • 64,400 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevy Cobalt. The contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph, the power steering suddenly malfunctioned causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle and crashed into a tree. The contact indicated that during the crash, the airbags failed to deploy. The driver suffered a concussion, a neck injury and lacerations to the hands and face. A police report was filed. The vehicle was completely destroyed. The failure mileage was 64,400.

- Yadkinville, NC, USA

problem #148

Jun 072014

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • 82,000 miles
Driving down a residential road at less than 30 miles per hour. All of a sudden without any warning, everything went haywire: I got a low fuel warning even though the tank was half-full, myriad warning lights flashed, the tachometer needle moved erratically, I lost power steering, and the automatic transmission started shifting very roughly. I pulled over and stopped the car, removed and reinserted the key, and restarted the car. The problem persisted. All without the car key attached to a key chain - GM's proposed solution until new parts can be installed for the recall. I drove the car a half-mile back to my home and shut it off. I restarted the car several minutes later and the problem was gone - the only lingering symptom was a check engine light. I drove it to the dealership that day. As yet (2 days later), they have been unable to recreate the problem. They say they're still unsure whether it's related to the recall. I registered my car for the recall over 3 weeks ago but the dealership hasn't received the replacement part yet. My latest information is they are looking for a spare replacement part because they think it will take another three weeks before the part for my car arrives (that's a 6-week wait-list for a replacement part known to cause fatal accidents).

- Parker, CO, USA

problem #147

May 222014

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 91,778 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated that while driving approximately 60 mph, the steering wheel was hard to turn which caused the driver to crash into another vehicle. The air bags failed to deploy. The other driver sustained neck injuries. A police report was filed of the incident. The vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 91,778. Updated 08-20-14...updated 09-09-14. Updated 09/15/2014

- Lewisville, TX, USA

problem #146

Jun 202013


  • 94,000 miles
I have a 2008 Chevy Cobalt, I have many problems with it. It shut off itself 3 times at 60 miller per hour, the lights start blink and the power lock it's locking and unlocking by itself many times. I call the Chevy recall center and they told me that I have to pay for the diagnostic, but I am doing payments on this car still and I can't pay for the diagnostic. The recall # is.. 14V047 and 14V171.

- Vallejo, CA, USA

problem #145

Jun 012014

Cobalt 4-cyl

  • miles
I am very disappointed in GM's handling of the February 10 and April 10, 2014 recalls of 2008 Chevrolet Cobalts. I am a 2008 Cobalt owner, and I still have not received a letter nor has my uncle who is the registered owner. I bought the vehicle used but do not feel that is an adequate excuse for not being notified of this recall. I was not able to order the designated parts for repair until 3 days ago, as the dealership I contacted in regards to the problem did not get back to me. I do not feel that this recall is a situation to make light of. People are dying from this deficiency in the vehicle, and I was never even informed of the possibility of my air bags not deploying. I do not feel safe driving my car and I do not feel secure knowing that without my taking the initiative to investigate this problem, I would never have known that my car had been recalled. I also am not satisfied with the listing on the official GM letter on the NHTSA website that all ignition switches will be replaced, when the posted recall on cars.com from GM states a problem with the ignition cylinder as well. I also feel that my air bags, steering and entire electrical system should be tested and replaced if there is even the slightest chance that they have be ineffective. I lose power steering if my ignition switch fails, in addition to my air bags failing, further compromising my safety. I am very concerned about these defects on my vehicle, as I have no other form of transportation back and forth to work etc., and the length of time it is taking for it to be repaired. The dealership that ordered the parts for me told me it would be 6 weeks before the parts arrived, at which point I could make my appointment which may mean additional waiting. I, as a consumer, feel slighted and certainly disregarded. I will not recommend any GM sedan of this nature to anyone.

- Kenmore, NY, USA

problem #144

May 232014


  • miles
The contact owns a 2008 Chevrolet Cobalt. The contact stated after the vehicle was repaired per NHTSA recall campaign number: 14V171000, electrical system the air bag light illuminated sporadically and the power steering failed to function normally. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer or an independent mechanic for the failures. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was unknown. The current mileage was 79,873.

- Lebanon, TN, USA

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