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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 6
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
55,786 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 Malibu electrical problems

electrical problem

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2011 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 5 of 6)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #23

Jun 022014


  • 72,000 miles


Power locks don't work! the remote key chain button will unlock the doors but will not lock the doors. I can't even use the power locks on the driver door to lock the doors on the inside. I have to lean over to the passenger side to lock the doors then get out of the car and check the handle to make sure my doors are locked. The remote key chain will not lock the doors! also, the trunk release will not work on the remote key chain or in the car. I have to use the key to unlock the trunk...

- Lees Summit, MO, USA

problem #22

Apr 082014


  • 72,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the rear window defogger failed without warning. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the rear fuse box and the wiring harness needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure and current mileage was 72,000. The VIN was not available.

- Chelmsford, MA, USA

problem #21

Apr 092014


  • 54,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the vehicle failed to start. In addition, while driving approximately 30-45 mph, the vehicle decelerated and stalled. The contact was able to restart the vehicle however it failed to accelerate over 20 mph. The warning lights flashed and the contact was unable to unlock the vehicle to exit. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the electrical fuel pump needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 54,000 and the current mileage was 58,800.

- Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #20

Apr 012014

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 73,000 miles


While driving my car a service light came on. The message was "service traction" and "service ESC". the car will loose power and act like it's going to die. I took my car to a Chevrolet dealership on 2 different occasions and the first time they would not look at it because they could not figure out if it was under warranty. The second attend at the dealership they diagnosed the problem as the wiring harness and it needed to be replaced. On May 14, 2014 GM recalled Chevrolet Malibu's for the model year 2004-2014. I contacted GM about the recall and was denied help to fix the problem with my car. I informed the person I spoke with that my car had been diagnosed by a dealership with the same issue as the recall. GM informed me that I could pay to have the vehicle fixed out of my own pocket and maybe get reimburse at a later time. I explained my concern for the safety of my child that gets transported in the vehicle and they did not care. The lady on the phone just kept repeating that I could pay out of pocket for the problem. I have read online that it was all models recalled from 2004-2012 but I am still getting denied help.

- Van Lear, KY, USA

problem #19

May 082013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 36,000 miles
I purchased my 2011 Malibu in April 2012. Initially, I was experiencing power surges upon breaking. I was slowing down to come to a complete stop and my car would surge forward before stopping. The dealership replaced a sensor. I'm still experiencing the surges occasionally. The next time I took it in because I was getting a lot of noise and vibration when driving on a rough a surface. The dealership replaced the steering column. It was fine for a year, now that problem is returning. During the winter 2013, my rear defrost stopped working. I took it in and was told that the rear fuse block was melted and it will cost $535 to have it replaced. And another $230 to have the driver's side seat belt replaced---- it doesn't connect securely without fiddling with it. I think there should be recalls issued on all of these problems because I have read blogs and others are having the same issues, and they are all related to the safety of the vehicle.

- South Bend, IN, USA

problem #18

Mar 202014


  • 36,000 miles
I was driving to work and all the dash warning lights came on. The car slowed down and the steering began to shake. I'm having my boyfriend look at it after work but I found this site so I decided to post this as well.

- Lawton, OK, USA

problem #17

Sep 272013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 27,510 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph, all of the warning lights on the instrument panel illuminated as the vehicle stalled. The vehicle was towed to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the battery and alternator needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred. The approximate failure mileage was 27,510 and the current mileage was 31,913. Updated 6/17/14

- Hampstead , MD, USA

problem #16

Jan 062014


  • 46,640 miles
I was driving my 2011 Chevy Malibu way too work, rush hour and unpleasant weather. As I was driving the car just slowed itself down, started to tremble and the ;engine power reduce / service traction warning lights came on. I was almost rear-ended since car just decided to reduce its engine power. I pulled over for a few minutes, turned car off and restarted but the engine light stayed on. Car started to run smoothly, and then it happened again. I called into work and cautiously drove car to local dealership. I was told car will not be looked at til the following day. The service attendant calls me the following morning, to tell me the car was checked and needs throttle body replacement and is not covered by the manufacturer, due to it being an electrical/mechanical defect possibly caused by the cold weather. I asked why would the throttle body defect, be the consumers fault; I didn't know cars cant be out in the cold weather. So, I decided to look up the 2011 Chevy Malibu recalls/defects and found 22 of 57 complaints over the same car issue/problem/defect. So, I ask; why hasn't this been put up for a safety issue, a recall, and have this taken care of"?" this can cause alot of accidents! as im sure the consumers who have experienced this engine power reduction have felt at that moment and time. So now im too pay $546 (estimated) too have this problem taken care of, since the manufacturer decided to use faulty/defective parts on these vehicles. I thought Chevrolet was a dependable maker. All my friends, neighbors, and my parents have purchased Chevy- from traverse- Malibu's and they are all surprised this is happening.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #15

Dec 122013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 63,800 miles
I was driving this vehicle on one of the main highways where there is a lot of traffic and several lights appeared first it was the service ESC, engine power reduced, and service traction light, along with my check engine light, and traction light, the car then dropped from a speed of 65 to a speed of 20 and would not go on the highway this almost got me killed. I feel that GM should look into this issue as there are several people having the same issue, I would rather my life be saved than driving in a defective vehicle.

- Bedford, TX, USA

problem #14

Nov 052013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 78,989 miles
I was driving on the highway and out of no where the check engine light came on. My car than started to jerk like it was running out of oxygen, the car felt like it didn't want to shift in gear.. took to have check and come to find out its the (tcm) transmission control module which isn't covered under warranty for and extra two thousand dollars from santander consumer and bronx Suzuki/victory in bronx, NY. I have been ripped off in a car payment that's more than the car is worth.

- Yonkers, NY, USA

problem #13

Jul 122013


  • 26,800 miles


The manufacturer forgot to install a clamp on the moon roof drain. The tube fell off and flooded the interior of the car with 3 inches of standing water on July 12, 2013. The entire passenger side including ceiling, dash (in front and behind), seats, flooring, and electrical components have water damage. It then happened again on July 14, 2013. Contact was made to the dealer on July 16, 2013. After numerous, meaningless phone conversations with Chevrolet, they would only replace some cosmetic parts. Only the flooring was replaced at first. After more complaints, the seat covers and head liner were replaced, but not the factory carpeted floor mats. They refused to replace or inspect anything else that water came in contact with including electrical components, seat cushions, safety restraints, wiring harnesses, or airbag system behind the dash. Our 10 year old son had a kidney transplant two years ago and has a suppressed immune system. Due to this, he cannot be around mold which Chevrolet is refusing to test for. Being that only 50% or less of the components have been replaced, we are concerned of the presence of mold. Our physician has requested that the car be tested and signed off that no mold is present before our son can ride in the car again. Our son's health depends on having a safe, clean car to be transported in. Chevrolet has no concerns for his safety or life threatening issues. Unknown electrical safety components may or may not have been compromised with this much water or moisture in the vehicle. These parts were not checked, tested or replaced.

- Duluth, MN, USA

problem #12

Mar 082012


  • 28,000 miles
I purchased my car in Feb. Of 2012 as of today my car has been in the shop 10 different times for the same thing. The steering vibrates when you drive and it loses power when shifting. Then, I had to get a new motor in the car May 2013, then it was rattling again so I took it up there. They told me that the transmission problem was that it needed a program upgrade and that I had to pay out of pocket $60.70 for this upgrade. Two days later the whole car shuts down on me and they are now saying that it is an app module and it needs to be re-programmed. I am tired of paying all this tow bills and fees for a car that does not run and it not safe for my kids to ride in.

- Valmeyer, IL, USA

problem #11

Nov 012012


  • miles
I've owned the car for 18 months. November 2012, I reported to my GM dealer of loss of power when driving. Car's resistant to acceleration attempts, loses power at varying speeds from 30 mph and up. Vehicle brought in, dealer stated there were no problems. December 2012, while driving at approximately 30mph, car engine stopped running, car came to stop on active train tracks with children in car, no power steering, not able to shift into drive, neutral or reverse, park. Once ignition was turned off, vehicle would not start. Towed vehicle in for service, was told transmission needed to be replaced due to a bad solenoid. Vehicle still having problems two months after. January 2013 brought vehicle in for same issue, losing power, no acceleration, RPM's would rev and then rapidly drop while driving without foot on gas pedal. Was told by dealer nothing is wrong with car. February 2013, change oil light was one for three months, even after having oil changed. Brought to dealer to have reset. May 2013, vehicle still losing power, RPM's revving and rapidly dropping, dash lights randomly dimming without touching dimmer knob, driver's door will not open from inside and will not lock/unlock despite multiple methods, once open door will not latch to close and door bounces open again, auto start lags at time and randomly doesn't work. I have an appointment to bring vehicle in for service next Monday, not optimistic as the dealer keeps telling me there's nothing wrong with the car and they are unable to replicate, they state they are not aware of any other known issues on this vehicle, despite there being many many tsb's online for the same issues I've been experiencing. I haven't owned the car for even two years, traded in a beautiful new camaro for it to Transport my children in a safe car, yet this vehicle has been nothing but problems and headaches.

- Randolph, MA, USA

problem #10

Mar 132013


  • 42,568 miles
Driving 65 mph on interstate and service ESC and all other lights came on and engine died. I had to maneuver 3 lanes to the right in rush hour to get to the breakdown lane without power steering. "faulty alternator" ruled to be at fault. No warning that morning prior to event. Two days before the battery light stayed on a little longer (5 minutes) than usual and then went off. It never came on again to warn of something wrong. I called Chevrolet and the customer service was indifferent so I filed a complaint with my state's BBB as this is the third, and most severe issue, I have had with this car and I have not had it two years quite yet. I did receive a call back from GM. They are working on their response to this life threatening event as well as the other problems, which were the exhaust solenoid died ( service engine light came on) and the driver's side door handle covering came off exposing the sharp metal it is made of).

- Goffstown, NH, USA

problem #9

Feb 212013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 30,000 miles
Check air bag light came on, then reset itself, windshield wipers on intermittent mode shut off and on again. Reported to Chevy dealer, said if light wasn't on they couldn't check it, if the wipers are working properly they couldn't check it. Did this on my last oil change.

- Rehoboth, MA, USA

problem #8

Mar 032013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 68,343 miles
The contact just bought a 2011 Chevrolet Malibu used November 2012. The contact stated that while driving approximately 35mph, the vehicle became resistant to acceleration attempts. The esp, slippery /traction light, engine light and reducing engine power warning lights came on and the car decreased speed to 20mph.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #7

Feb 212013

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 44,078 miles
The fuel pump has burned connectors that are inside the fuel tank, the board lights intensity increases or decreases or stays off, all fuses are good, the GM is aware of this and 72 hours ago I'm waiting for an answer, I have fear that happen again, so I'm not using the car, where I can send pictures of the fuel pump, when I opened the case I ask them GM car rent it and revise mine to see if it was safe but until now no response, it seems that they want the car to burn.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #6

Jan 302013


  • 39,265 miles
Went out to crank the car. It would not start. Sent in to be fixed. Picked car up today and inside panel is not working neither is the lights. I have to call service again in the a.M.

- Clinton , SC, USA

problem #5

Aug 042012

Malibu 4-cyl Diesel

  • 12,000 miles
Backed out of driveway and drove to the end of street and vehicle was sluggish to move into gear by the end of the street which is roughly 4 house down from driveway I backed out of it would no longer go forward so I had to back up all the way to my driveway and cal dealership to tow in. Monday morning dealer service dept said it was diagnosed as a sensor in transmission and it was ordered and car was back to me within two days. I am worried this will be a continuing problem as I had a similar situation with previous 2009 Ford Taurus X that just kept happening with and nothing was done to resolve the situation. When you buy a new car you do not expect these issues. But, more importantly, I do not want this to occur when I am driving on a highway since this happens with no warning.

- Granite City , IL, USA

problem #4

Sep 152011

Malibu 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the instrument panel was inoperable and he was unable to determine how fast he was traveling or how many miles were on the vehicle. The dealer made three attempts to duplicate the failure. The manufacturer was notified and the contact was awaiting a response. The approximate failure mileage was 10,000 and the current mileage was 10,900. The VIN was unavailable. When driving along dash board lights and gauges go off and on day and night no speed indication either. Updated 11/03/2011

- Howell, NJ, USA

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