Notes: In many ways, the 2012 Cruze continues the legacy of its predecessor. It's a legacy of sluggish transmissions and coolant leaks, but it's still a legacy.

To be fair, the number of complaints about the cooling system are way down versus the 2011 model which led to a class-action lawsuit.

On the flip-side, there's more concerns about brake problems.

However, there were far more Cruze vehicles sold for the 2012 model year so we'll give it our "Beware of this Clunker" badge rather than the "Avoid Like the Plague."


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
48,069 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.

2012 Chevrolet Cruze miscellaneous problems

miscellaneous problem

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2012 Chevrolet Cruze Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #27

Dec 122016


  • 115,698 miles


I was driving by myself down a busy road, luckily not too busy with traffic and the service engine soon light came on with comment stability traction. I immediately pulled over, turned the car off and called our Chevy dealer. I was instructed to leave the car off a few minutes then turn it back on which I did. All the lights went away. I scheduled an appointment for several days later to have the car checked. The car was fine the rest of the day. The next day around 3 pm I was leaving work the stability traction light came on and then the reduced engine speed light came on. My car dropped to 10 miles an hour I was about rear ended. I turned on hazards. I right at an intersection, I started blowing my horn cause the light turned yellow. I turned into a parking lot. I immediately turned the car off and called the dealer again. The guy on the phone stated turn the car off and on for a few minutes and it did reset. He said I see you have an upcoming appointment. I said yes but I am dropping the car off tonight and he stated okay. Next day they phone me and the"throttle body" was bad. Many, many complaints online about this. He stated he also had to replace the outlet housing, something to do with oil. This was just re-placed 15 months ago but was now out of warranty. A day later I was out $1,053.99. Luckily I had the money! my point is not only myself but others, many others all over the internet have issues with this throttle body. Why not recall it" do you realize what danger I was in??" thank you.

- Dayton, OH, USA

problem #26

Aug 292015


  • 84,548 miles
Hello, I have issues with my Chevrolet Cruze eco about burning smell, coolant burning issue smel. After going through too much back and forth with the dealership and GM and they are busy playing blame game. I feel like I am going through too much and there is absolutely no body who is willing to help. The dealership here said that they performed everything possible things and there is no fix. I have all the paperwork. I have this issue for a while and its really sad that I have to drive the car with the burning smell and have my daughter ( 3 years old ) smell. Please help.

- Plynouth, MA, USA

problem #25

Oct 152016


  • miles
Message came on "ac off due to high engine temp." The temperature gauge has mot not moved from "C" since message appeared. I found a lot of this complaints online. I feel like it needs to be a recalled issue. I love my car. Please help me. I'm on fixed income and afford to have to have it fixed.

- Birmingham, AL, USA

problem #24

Aug 152016


  • 127,247 miles


Takata recall my 2012 Chevy cruize eco will just shut off die while iam driving sometimes will start back and sometime when I when I try to start it it won't start or even turn over have taken to mechanic 3 times have not fixed it said was loose wire and bad battery and gps but it won't start again today just got it fixed 2 days ago it's going to get someone killed dieing when driving G

- Brownsburg, IN, USA

problem #23

May 212016


  • 96,000 miles
I noticed my car wasn't beeping when I tried to lock it. I tried to start my car and it completely shut down. I managed to get my hood open and disconnected the battery cables. It was fine for a few weeks then the "check stabilitrack" went off and my car shut down. I made it to my destination and it shut down completely. I tried to disconnect it and even that didn't work. Upon further investigation many had had this issue and it's not the stabilitrak its apparently the ground cable to the battery (black cable). My car will work but will occasionally completely reset the system so trying to save the time or date is pointless. I want this investigated!

- Whitesboro, TX, USA

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problem #22

Aug 242016


  • 89,689 miles
Victoriathis is the third incident in a three month span I've had with my traction control/ stabilitrack warning. (I got the car three months ago) it is a 2012 Chevy Cruze. This last time after the "service stabilitrack" warning came on my radio and dic menu reset itself. I've read into other complaints about this same problem where others have eventually lost engine power or power steering and driven into a ditch or have just been put in very dangerous positions as a result of this issue. I have not lost any power as of yet but I'm not waiting until I do to say something, after making countless trips to the dealership without prevail.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #21

Aug 022016


  • 71,000 miles


The stability track control and service traction control messages have both happened to me now a few times while driving down city/country roads and down the highway. The first time I had the service traction control was yesterday. (8/02/2016) it's scary because the radio resets and the power steering goes out. I have a 9 year old daughter and she's terrified as well. I wish they would figure this out already. I called the dealer once and like most people write online about this issue they didn't know what it could be and they didn't have a car I could use to go back and forth to work while they checked it out so I haven't taken to the dealer yet. The issue comes and goes. It could go away for months but always comes back. I keep checking online to see if they finally found a fix for this issue and I still haven't found anything. So I'm assuming once someone dies in a bad accident or numerous people do then maybe they will take it more seriously" I'm a single mom and I can't afford to not have a car or have a problem that I have to pay lots of $ to fix when this obviously needs to be a recall when this many people are having the issue and it affects your steering!?!?!?! help pls?!?!"!

- Elgin, SC, USA

problem #20

Jul 272016


  • 79,000 miles
I was taking my wife to work which is only 10 mnutes away, on my way home I had a display on my digital display saying engine over heat/ac off so I panicked and seen the engine light was on and it was super hot and panicked more! I had my 15 month old in the car so I didnt stop but I get home and check the coolant and its completely empty but I just filled it a week or 2 before this incident. Later on after the car is cooled down I fill up the coolant, I then pick my wife up from work and check the coolant after but it was almost completely empty when I had just filled it up. Called the dealership and they want to charge me $125 an hour just to find the problem and I know im not the only person with this problem they sent out a letter about this before but is techniclly not a recall and that needs to change! I take care of our vehicle and to have a problem with it that everyone else is having and not do a recall is just terrible! hope something gets done about this if not ill be sure to be anti GM when talking to friends and family and will never buy GM products again!

- Oceanside, CA, USA

problem #19

Feb 022016


  • 46,680 miles
Have a odor coming through HVAC system strong odor of hot grease or burning oil on cold days with hear on gets very strong and over a period of time smell gets to you and get sickening feeling. Had dealership check it out and was told GM is aware of problem but is not under warranty or recall at this time, I feel this is a defect problem and it should be taken care by GM. GM code #pi0935E (April 9 2015)

- Kings Mountain, NC, USA

problem #18

Dec 272015

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
Ac off due to high temp, thermostat replaced 2014. Ac off due to high temp again, thermostat replaced May 20, 2015.. Dec 27th, 2015 ac off due to high temp again- car overheated in 10 degre weather. Thermostat being replaced for the third time!!

- South Lake Tahoe, CA, USA

problem #17

Sep 252015


  • 35,400 miles


My wife pulled into my daughter's driveway took her foot off the gas pedal and was going to put her foot on the brake when the car accelerated and ran into my daughter's SUV, my wife put the car in reverse and went to step on the gas pedal but she could not feel it, she look down and found the gas pedal and about 4 inches of the stem on the floor completely broken off

- Hilliard, OH, USA

problem #16

Aug 112015


  • 68,492 miles
When the car first started messing up it was minor things I noticed: The in dash lighter not working, trunk latch doesn't work except by key, turn signals would glitch, can't use usb & audio cord at same time without it cutting off both completely. Then a couple weeks later I noticed my car had an unusual delay in increasing speed it was as if I had to push it to the floor just to get to 30 mph. Now the most recent event occurred on 9/17/15 which is what's prompting me to file this complaint (keep in mind I've only owned the vehicle for 8 months, purchased at 54K miles currently has 70.9K) I drove to my house approx 30 min hwy from where I was I got into my car the next morning it didn't start at all. My bf checked the battery voltage & it was too dead to test, with a jumper box my car took approx10 min to even turn over, during the time of me inside the car attempting to start it my steering column locked up, lights in dash, radio system, headlights everything flashing on and off, key was stuck inside ignition, a foul smell & clicking noise is coming from engine, & couldn't lock doors once I turned car off immediately. This all occurred I'd say within a matter of 30 seconds after the car to turned over. Was so freaked out I didn't try to start again for 2-3 min and once I did it started right up. Within 72 hrs I have now seen the stabilitrac service alert, theft alert system needs serviced, along w/ air bags, & battery light flickers on & off. The clicking under my hood has continued, the rotten egg smell from engine comes & goes, dash lights go dim then go back to regular. Drove to O'reillys, they were able to tell me I now have a bad alternator as well. Recall 14801 was issued for reprogram engine control module, getting serviced this week at dealership but could this possibly cause all this?? especially considering I don't want to be responsible for repairs. Help

- Springfield, MO, USA

problem #15

Sep 122015


  • 83,508 miles
For the whole month the red warning lights have been flashing, today the lights were dimming and radio was going on and off. The steering wheel locked on its own and the key wouldn't come out when tried to remove and the truck wouldn't pop up when tried to open it from the outside. Vehicle is not cranking at moment and key is still in ignition. This is a serious safety problem or issue. Electrical problem hazard that could kill any driver or passengers when driving. Has to be as major safety recall. Contact the owner as soon as possible at 334-368-4373 this is my daughter latoria womack cell number and I am her dad ronnal womack at 843-870-2625. Please is there a recall on vehicle? my daughter drives this car to college classes every day. Please advice asap. Her life is in danger here. James and pamela are the owners but daughter drives vehicle to college. I am biological father and very concerned. Due to mother and stepfather at wife's surgery please notify me of matter to get help.

- Greenville, AL, USA

problem #14

Aug 212015


  • 66,000 miles
Purchased car new for my daughter going to college. Car has been good but she called me that she started her car in a parking lot and she had a stabilitrac light, power steering, and tones going off. She was scared but I called a repair shop and they suggested to turn off and on. She did this and all but stabilitrac went off. She drove to take to dealer. She stopped to get gas and when turned car back on, all lights stopped. She drove car home and took to local repair. He said he could not find issue. A week later, she was driving on the interstate and the lights came on again. She video taped the lights. She pulled off and turned car off and then on and everything was reset. We are concerned that error cant be tracted but continues to be issue.

- Cynthiana, KY, USA

problem #13

Feb 022015


  • 22,150 miles
Strong sickening coolant smell inside car while heater system is on. May 7,2015 dealer pressure checked found no leaks. Can't find problem. No leaks visible. Smell still exists while heater is on.

- Caribou, MD, USA

problem #12

Oct 312014


  • 56,000 miles
The electrical pad that you push to open the trunk is faulty and does not work anymore. Only way to get into trunk is to push key fob. If a child or adult got trapped inside it could be harmful due to fact that the push pad for the trunk open is faulty.

- Mount Pleasant, MI, USA

problem #11

May 042015


  • 45,000 miles
While driving on highway with my sunroof raised I heard an explosion and felt pieces of glass falling. When I pulled over I noticed my sunroof glass exploded from the inside out. Nothing hit my car. I did not hear a thud or see anything roll off my car. There is no dent. Just a hole where the glass exploded.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #10

Aug 212014


  • miles
Air bag indicator came on 1 month after I bought the car and called to see if it was cpvered by the million recalls but was told my VIN number isnt on the recall list. How is it that my car is doing the very thing the other 40,000 recalls from Chevy but mine isnt covered. Will never buy another Chevy and I am counting down the days til I can trade it in!!!!

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #9

Aug 292014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 32,945 miles
Vehicle turned off in the middle of taking a left turn. Caused the car to go off the road into a graded lot. At this point causing my tire to go flat and damaging the fender and passenger door. This is not the first time the car has turned off on me. I have had it in the shop 3 times in the 4 months that I have owned this vehicle and still nothing is resolved.

- Lake Havasu City, AZ, USA

problem #8

Jul 092014

Cruze 4-cyl

  • 21,500 miles
When the speed of the car starts to reach 50 miles a high pitch sound occurs. I cannot determined if it is related to when air conditioner is turned on. The noise will diminish when speed is lowered to about 45 miles. I cannot recall if this happens in the colder months but it does seem to happen in the summer.

- North Wales, PA, USA

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