Notes: What’s that smell – it’s a tad sweet with a tinge of chemical toxicity? If you own a 2011 Cruze it’s probably a coolant leak. It’s a widespread and notorious problem for the car and is the subject of a class-action lawsuit filed in the state of New York. And that’s not the only problem 2011 owners face…

Many say the 2011 model year suffers from a throttle lag that is probably due to a fauly electronic throttle control. The problem is signifigant enough that some owners say they are too scared to drive their cars. Those that do get behind the wheel often say their transmission isn’t shifting properly and problems start occuring as early as 15,000 miles.

All of this leads us to say you’re probably better off without this car’s headaches (they’re probably chemically-induced anyway).


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
400 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.

2011 Chevrolet Cruze transmission problems

transmission problem

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2011 Chevrolet Cruze Owner Comments

problem #3

Jul 182011


  • 200 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Cruze. The contact stated that the shifter was very difficult to maneuver and that the shift cable was faulty. The contact was unable to shift into first or second gear. While downshifting at 25 mph, the shifter would become stuck and cause the vehicle to coast while in traffic. The contact took the vehicle to a dealer but the dealer was unable to locate a failure within the shifter. The contact called the manufacturer regarding the failure and was advised to take the vehicle back to the dealer. The dealer then adjusted the shifter cable, which remedied the failure. The failure mileage was 200.

- Killeen, TX, USA

problem #2

May 202011

Cruze 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 1,000 miles
I am very disappointed with my new 2011 Chevy Cruze eco (1.4L 6 speed manual transmission) the car looses power especially when try to accelerate up hills, total loss of power and lack of response. This keeps happening out on the freeway. I have my foot pressed all the way down on accelerator, but no response from the car. Car has slowed down to 30 mph going up the hills on freeway putting me in an unsafe position. It happens on level services too, try to get the car going when at a stop light is hard too, I give the car gas and get very slow response, when it does respond the car is very jerky going thru the gears, afraid this may cause an accident for failure to move out and with the traffic. It happens with all the gears ! I have problems too with the car over- accelerating going now hills. All the above continue to happen despite following the owners manual for operating the vehicle. I feel strongly that this is a unsafe vehicle. I bought the car with a 4 cyl turbo with hopes I would have a little extra power, I haven't seen it yet.

- Ohio, OH, USA

problem #1

Mar 082011


  • miles
I bought a brand new 2011 Chevy Cruze ls. After about two weeks of driving the vehicle I notice that when driving it in manual and coming to a stop the car would violently shift into first gear. I took the car back to the dealership and they contacted GM. They also test drove every Chevy Cruze ls model and non-turbo engine Cruze they had in stock and found the same problem. They contacted GM again and GM informed them that they were aware of the problem with the ls an non-turbo engine models and that they do not have a solution of fix to the problem. I then contacted GM and asked them about their 30 day guarantee on their vehicles. They then informed me that they do have that policy but unfortunately would not honor it because of my case. When I asked them what they planned to do about the problem they informed me that they will continue to sell the vehicle and recall them later when they are able to find a solution of fix to the problem. The car now has 1000 miles on it and I am afraid to drive the car with my family in it for fear that something will happen while I am driving. I think it is ridiculous that GM is aware of the problem and will not recall that affected models. I also find it very disheartening that GM does not honor their customers like they are always advertising they do.

- Pottsville, PA, USA

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