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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
69,012 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.

2001 Chevrolet Malibu brakes problems

brakes problem

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2001 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments

problem #11

May 152007

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 600,000 miles


Brakes have been replaced 4 times in last year. There have been continual failures with the rotors and calipers. When braking it appeared that the ABS system that was designed to eliminate braking lock ups was engaging when it was not supposed to. Brakes were wearing at an extremely high rate, which was warping the rotors which have been installed brand new. Pulsating noise was common along with scraping and spongy brake pedal. In researching it appeared that the Malibu had an extensive history of brake failures in a short time. Several close calls due to brake failure. These cars need to be recalled and fixed before any further injuries or death occur.

- Shelley, ID, USA

problem #10

Mar 142006

Malibu 6-cyl

  • miles
2001 Malibu has had front brake disc and battery replaced, 16804 miles on vehicle.. mechanic has now informed consumer that ignition switch needs to be replaced.

- Springfield, PA, USA

problem #9

Apr 012004


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Front brakes wore out prematurely, dealer inspected vehicle several times, but problem recurred.

- Dodgeville, WI, USA

problem #8

Oct 122003

(reported on)

Malibu 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles


The brake rotors warped which caused the vehicle to shimmy while applying pressure to the brake pedal. Consumer had not repaired the vehicle due to cost. The consumer's friend stated this was a problem with all Chevrolet Malibu's.

- Chubbuck, ID, USA

problem #7

May 152003


  • 65,000 miles
When applying brakes vehicle shakes and rattles. Dealer notified.

- Pocono Lake, PA, USA

problem #6

Apr 152003

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 34,133 miles
I purchased a 2001 Malibu ls used back in Feb 2002. I have had nothing but problems with the breaks making a grounding noise when I come to slow stops. As time goes by it seems to be happening more and more oftern. At first it was only when I would be in drive thru lines waiting or the brake noise would come and then go away for awhile. The noise is like a grounding or metal rubbing noise. When you press on the brakes it sound like the brakes are going to snap off. I have brought this car into two difference repair shops and they all stated that this problem is due to how Chevy made the brakes. They tell me something about they now use metal on the brakes and when the brakes get hot they make this noise. I can turn the car on and usually within 15 minutes the brakes start making the noise. I had the brakes oiled, brakes pads repaired and nothing takes the noise away. From what I am told and from what I have read from other peoples complaints is that this is a very common problem and if you get the brakes replaced eventually it will start again. Many people have wondered why no recall has been issued. Like someone else stated what does it take for a recall to be issued. A death or injury due to the brakes. I am lucky compared to what other people who have had the brakes fail. I don't know how much more I can take of hearing the noise. I contacted the Chevy customer service via email and all they told me was to take it to a dealer and have it looked at. Since they can't inspect the car they have to rely on the dealers. Not once did they ever admit to any problems with the brakes. I paid alot for this car and I should have to deal with brake problems. I went back to the dealer many times but they were not helpfull. I won't go back anymore to the dealer because I have spoken to other people who bought cars from there and they had nothing but problems. I just want this brake issue to be resolved.

- Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #5

Jan 282002


  • miles


Front brakes rotors and pads went bad prior to 29,173 miles. Called dealer about problem, told them 25,000+/- miles was too soon for brakes to wear. Dealer said they make brakes different now. Dealer would not replace them under warrenty. Ended up replacing them at my own expense myself. Brakes still scrape when moving vehicle at 5 mph. At 55-60 mph and press the brake pedal hard vehicle will shake vigorously pulling the steering wheel out of hand. Have not driven my vehicle since March 2002. Trying to sell it. Almost had it sold when the person buying the car talked to the dealer that sold me my car. The salesman at the dealer said to her that he wouldn't think of selling her a Malibu and that she should stay away from them. The salesman said that the Malibu has a lot of problems, mostly the brakes and is basically a lemon. Chevrolet knows about the brake problem on earlier models (98-00), but has yet to correct the problem. Now I have a car I can't drive or sell!

- Frankfort, ME, USA

problem #4

Apr 222002


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Front brakes pulsate when vehicle stops. Brakes had failed and dealer stated the problem could reoccur. Consumer states he is hearing a clunk noise in right front wheel area and brake noise in front when braking, vibration is worse after 30 miles of stopping, dealer replaced pads and resurfaced rotors; also, intermittently humming type noise during acceleration.

- Perry, MI, USA

problem #3

Aug 012001


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Vibration and pulsating when applying brakes, grinding noise can be heard. Dealer replaced front rotors and pads. Rotors were replaced a second time in October 2001 for premature wear.

- Centerville, PA, USA

problem #2

Feb 012002


  • miles
When braking vehicle would shake. Took vehicle to dealer, and they stated it was tires. Consumer went to Firestone, and had tires replaced. However, problem reoccurred. Dealer wont look at vehicle.

- Livingston, LA, USA

problem #1

Mar 232001


  • miles
Brakes are spongy. There is a lot of play in the brakes. When applying brakes has to press down hard to stop. Brakes sound like metal to metal rubbing when applying hard. Contacted dealer, and dealer stated couldn't get vehicle to duplicate itself.

- Bismarck, ND, USA

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