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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
16,418 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.

2002 Chevrolet Malibu brakes problems

brakes problem

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2002 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments

problem #9

Mar 212008

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10 miles


From the first day I had this car, the brakes do not engage completely in the first few uses of the brakes, especially in wet conditions. I have had many near misses of accidents because of the brakes not engaging and sometimes not releasing-a thumping sound is heard when the brake cylinder piston releases.

- Euclid, OH, USA

problem #8

Oct 142007

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,051 miles
When the weather is wet or snowy, and there is possible slick spots on the road, the ABS is engaged even when you are pulling up slowly to the stop sign, or slowing down to arrive home, or even coming out of the driveway... what happens, is when doing those things in weather as described above, if you attempt to put the breaks on it makes an awful grinding sound and pushed back on you so you cant break... this has happened to me numerous times just backing out of my driveway... I pulled up to a stop sign behind someone this is right on my residential street so I was not speeding at all, it was a rainy day but the rain was light, I have brand new tires on my car too. As I pulled up behind my neighbors car to the stop sign, I was barely pushing down my break peddle when it pushed back at me and made T his deep sound I couldn't stop and I almost hit my neighbor. I went to my long time mechanic and he took it for a drive on a clear day.... he took it on some gravel and stopped hard well the breaks did the same thing. He said it was the ABS even though he didn't look at them. I think it is the wheel bearings. I have had many other vehicles in my life and non of them did that to me on wet or snowy days! I know it isn't normal and I do not feel safe driving the vehicle. I have 2 young children and if the ABS are going to be that stingy then my chances of crashing will be 99% higher!

- Kearns, UT, USA

problem #7

Jun 062006

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 41,000 miles
: the contact stated while driving 40 mph the ABS light illuminated. The vehicle was driven to an independent mechanic who replaced the front passenger hub and speed sensor. The dealer was alerted. The vehicle is a Malibu.

- Clifton Springs, NY, USA

problem #6

Aug 122004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,000 miles


In August 2004 consumer had right and left wheel bearing and hub assemblies replaced. Now the ABS activates at low speeds. This happens all the time. Now consumer is told by the dealer that the right wheel bearing and hub assembly needs to be replaced again. Manufacturer was called and they said the part they put in last August was under a 12 month or 12000 mile warranty and consumer had to pay to have the problem fixed.

- Medina, NY, USA

problem #5

Apr 012005


  • miles
I just bought a used Malibu ls 2002. Three days later my ABS brake light comes on after I hear some vibrating noise while driving. I have taken it to the dealer and he says there is no problem. Now everytime I start up my car after 5 minutes the ABS light comes on.

- Matteson, IL, USA

problem #4

Jul 132004

Malibu 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,700 miles
Brakes 2001 Malibu chev. 35,000 miles brakes and rotors replaced 4 times.

- Middlesex, NC, USA

problem #3

Jun 102004


  • miles


While driving, (ABS) braking light appeared on the dashboard and remained on. The driver was able to drive the vehicle to the dealer for inspection, and mechanic determined ABS brake monitor needed replacement.

- Mount Morris, MI, USA

problem #2

Jul 262002


  • miles
When brakes were applied they didn't hold, causing vehicle to rear end another vehicle.contacted dealer.

- Worcester, MA, USA

problem #1

Mar 292002


  • miles
New car with 13136 miles. Trip to fl. Brakes ground when caught in slow X-way traffic in louisville ky. Had to replace front brake pads, turn rotors at chv dlr. Cost $242. Warranty no good. They blamed it on living (1 mile) down a dirt road which prevented brakes from working. Reported complaint to home dlr. Then needed rotors turned again at 16000 miles. The said that brakes don't always last long, but were able to get srv. Rep. To refund $185. Dlr agreed to replace rotors if I had more trouble w/ brakes in next 10,000 mi. That means I could have a whole brake job at 28,000 at my expense. I am not happy. A commonly held idea is that brakes should last much longer. I don't ride my brakes and travel to work on paved rural roads without much traffic. I do lots of X-way driving and don't tailgate. Traded in a 1998 Malibu due to trouble with manifold gasket, air-con odor. Previously had warped rotors and a need to replace brakes much more often than 6 prev. Cars on same dirt road. Have since read that Malibu brakes have a history of problems. I think GM is ignoring the problem. They should re-engineer the brakes and give consumers a quality product.

- Manchester, MI, USA

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