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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
59,898 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 Malibu steering problems

steering problem

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2012 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #19

Jan 012012


  • 0 miles


I just received a letter from GM, informing me of another defect built into my vehicle, only one of which was to recall this vehicle to make a repair, the others, as with this letter has been to warn me of a defect, this letter contains the VIN number of my vehicle, explains what the defect is, however, even though it clearly states that GM is well aware of this defect, because in bold underlined type it states "do not take this vehicle to your Chevrolet dealer as a result of this letter unless you believe that your vehicle has the condition as described above". this is very disturbing to me because long before the ignition switch on the Chevrolet cobalt model caused the deaths that forced NHTSA to force GM to recall that vehicle to make the necessary repair, I had the ignition switch problem a cobalt I owned and when told it would cost me over $400 to have that ignition switch replaced, I created such a commotion in that dealership, that they replaced that ignition switch w/O cost to me, which proves that they were well of off that deadly defect before it caused those deaths, so the fact that this letter clearly states the VIN number of this vehicle, as did they of the deadly ignition switch, ' so my plea to you is to force GM to recall this vehicle to make the necessary repairs mentioned in all four of the letters they have sent to me. Because the only way I would know whether or not my vehicle has this deadly defect, is to experience the death that could result from that defect..

- Yorktown, IN, USA

problem #18

Oct 152012


  • miles
Purchased car from ed bozarth on October 12. Within 1 week the brakes were grinding and you had to step on it hard for it to brake. Have changed brake pads and rotors twice within 3 years. Have complained to ed bozarth since I purchased it. I have taken the car to other GM dealerships and complained about the brakes. September 2015 took it to fletcher jones Chevrolet and had filed a complain with GM for approval to have them pay for the diagnostics. And again, the dealership and GM claim nothing is wrong with the brakes, but they grind horribly and you have to hit hard on the brakes to be able to brake. Another issue is the rubber steering wheel. It is coming apart and it cuts you as you are making right turn. Being diabetic it is a health issue.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #17

Sep 192015

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 18,000 miles
Received letters from GM that this car and two other family owned Malibu's (2009 & 2012 model years) may experience loss of their electric power steering (eps) due to a malfunction in the steering column torque sensor or the eps motor/controller. These vehicles were not part of the earlier recall NHTSA campaign # 14V252000 ( electrical system problem) which could affect steering and several other systems. My complaint is how can this company who covered up the ignition problem which killed over 100 people be allowed not to issue a recall for this problem. I have read horror stories on the NHTSA and Web sites of people who also were not part of the earlier recall crashing when their power steering failed. Do I have to wait until my wife or my two daughters get killed, as well as my grandson before my cars are fixed. This leads me to question why has the NHTSA not gone after GM for this when it is just as dangerous for this possible malfunction to occur as it did with the electrical system problem" also the NHTSA needs to find out if there are replacement parts that do not have this problem or else changing them will serve no purpose other than giving the dealerships money to do useless diagnostic tests which run over $100 each which GM told me I have to pay for. This letter was sent to owners for model years 2007 to 2012 for which the 3 year warranty has expired, promising free repair for 10 years from the date of purchase "if" you have trouble with your eps. The letter stated not to bring the car to the dealer unless you are experiencing a problem? so if you have trouble and get killed in a crash they will fix your car. I wonder if any letters were sent to owners of newer vehicles if the same defects are still in their cars" I have contacted my local paper and the ftc on this matter and I urge everyone who gets this outrageous letter to do the same.

- Staen Island, NY, USA

problem #16

Jul 112015


  • 51,800 miles


We purchased a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu Sept. 2014 and it has been serviced 3 X due to the power steering locking up while driving and failure to start several times. The car would chime and the gauges would all drop to 0 and the engine light, power steering, low fuel and anti-theft light would all light up making the vehicle very difficult to maneuver.

- Severn, MD, USA

problem #15

Mar 292015


  • 52,979 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu. While driving 65 mph, the steering wheel seized. The brake pedal was depressed, but the vehicle failed to stop. As a result, the contact lost control of the vehicle and crashed into a guardrail. The air bags deployed. The driver sustained minor cuts, bruises, and wrist injuries that required medical attention. A police report was filed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 52,979.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #14

Sep 052013

Malibu 6-cyl

  • 26,783 miles
We own a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu that has a problem with excessive vibration (shuddering) in the steering of the car especially when turning a corner. But now the car is developing more abnormal issues like the steering wheeling is moving back and forth on its own while driving on a flat straight smooth road. Also noted are clicking noises now heard in the steering wheel hub. With the worsening condition of the steering I am becoming reluctant to drive the car because I am concerned about the steering failing while operating the car. I have notified Chevrolet and I am waiting for them to get back to me. The car has been in the Chevrolet service dept. At least 6 times since 9/05/2013 for this problem and with 3 of those times was with a Chevrolet engineer. But Chevrolet cannot fix the problem and it is getting worse.

- Vancouver, WA, USA

problem #13

Jan 262015


  • 61,000 miles


The contact owns a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the steering failed on the vehicle. The failure caused the contact to drive into a snow bank. The contact stated that the power steering light illuminated on the instrument and the traction control light illuminated on the instrument panel. The contact stated that the failure prevented the vehicle from being steered. The contact spoke with the manufacturer and was informed that the electronic steering module was not under recall and that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 14V252000 (electrical system) even though the body control module needed to be replaced. The contact received this information from a senior safety supervisor from GM. The failure occurred four times. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 61,000.

- Lewiston, ME, USA

problem #12

Feb 182015

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 76,800 miles
Vehicle has random loss of electronic steering assist, which leaves no power steering. Also service ABS, ESC and traction warning lights, eps causes vehicles steering wheel to shake without vehicle being in motion. GM recalled thousands of Malibu's in Feb. Of 2015 for eps issues but my year is not included. Coincidence? highly doubtful. Vehicle it's scheduled for diagnosis on Wednesday. Car was repaired for an earlier recall concerning brake systems.

- Bismarck, ND, USA

problem #11

Aug 122014

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 51,250 miles
While driving the power steering would turn off and it is very difficult to drive (steer). The problem is that it has electronic steering control module which warms up and cuts out the power steering. It will display "power steering service ESC" and symbol comes on. This is an unexpected ongoing problem like in the morning it will be O.K. but late in the afternoon it could happen while driving.

- Vail, AZ, USA

problem #10

Oct 112014


  • 33,000 miles
The contact owned a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while making a left turn, another vehicle crashed into the rear passenger side of the contact's vehicle. The contact stated that the steering wheel and steering column detached from the vehicle, which landed on the contact's lap. The air bags failed to deploy. The contact was concerned that if the steering air bag deployed, he would have sustained possible fatal injuries. A police report was filed. The front passenger sustained back bruises that required medical attention. The vehicle was towed to an impound lot. The vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 33,000.

- Craesson, PA, USA

problem #9

Oct 112014

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 33,000 miles


I was rear ended and the steering wheel and shaft completely dislodged onto my lap.the air bag did not deploy. I was pushed approximately 150 ft. And there was no way I could have steered if there was another vehicle coming up the highway. If airbag would have deployed there would have been serious injury to myself.

- Cresson, PA, USA

problem #8

Jul 112014

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 57,000 miles
Driving and car had severe electrical problem that caused the car to randomly stall while driving. We lost power steering and power brakes. The instrument panel starting going crazy displaying all lights, saying device ESC and the doors locked and unlocked. The engine stalled and transmission started jolting around. The car would not turn back on after turning it off. Took the car to starling Chevrolet to get it fixed the following Monday since closed Sunday. Before taking to the dealer took the car to auto zone to check the battery. Autozone stating battery was great. Chevrolet didn't look at the car at all Monday, and Tuesday stated we need new battery. I advised of auto zone reading and was told autzone was wrong. Picked up the car Tuesday after having a brand new battery put in for $270. Today is the following Friday and the car did everything again while driving and will not start. Now I have to tow the car to Chevy again.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #7

Apr 252014

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 46,000 miles
Started my 2012 Chevy Malibu up and power steering light came on and also service ESC. Car had no power steering. This was after the first night of events I was at. So I drove it to the hotel I was at. Found out when trying to correct the problem that it has a electronic power steering. Drove it to a dealership but they couldn't service it on the weekend. I was 3 hours from my home at an event. So I drove it back to my hotel with no power steering. So I drove for roughly an hour with lights on and no power steering. Then was about to head to the day two of the event about 5 hours later and everything works again. I don't know what I need to fix on it at all now. My girl friend was driving when the power steering messed up and she never has lost power steering before and she couldn't even turn the wheel. So I had to drive it for her.

- Robinson, IL, USA

problem #6

Dec 132012


  • 24,000 miles
I was heading southbound colerain.. as I was going through a green light this young lady kept on coming at me and I slammed my brakes on and move my steering wheel in a hard way to avoid her hitting me and also last year slamming my brakes to avoid hitting a car infront of me that there was an accident on 75 South bound in Kentucky my steering wheel has some play in it.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #5

Jan 152014


  • 36,999 miles
07/2013 service ESC msg and symbol came on, dealer unable to find 01/07/2014 same 01/15/2014 again, GM paid half of the repair, because the first time it happen and was notice by dealer, I believe GM should paid the whole cost, as this is a safety issue, effects steering and stabilization of the vehicle.

- Burtbarnett, TX, USA

problem #4

Jul 012013


  • miles
I purchased the car in March 2013. It only had 18,000 miles on it. While slowing, such as exiting the interstate, as the car down shifts, it down shifts hard. Especially going from 3rd gear to 2nd and then 1st. It seems to have a slight delay when trying to pick up speed. More so when you have slowed and then sped back up, like when someone is turning and you have to slow for them. There is an awful noise in the dash around the steering column. If you are on a gravel road, it sounds like the dash/steering column is going to fall onto your feet. Its a rattle type sound.

- Ripley, WV, USA

problem #3

Feb 292012

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 11 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the front end of the vehicle started to wobble at 55 mph and above. The contact also stated that the dealer did an alignment four times and replaced the steering column once but the failure recurred. The rear right wheel had been leaning outward from the time the vehicle was purchased and had not been corrected by the alignment. The failure mileage was 11 and the current mileage was 19,500. The consumer stated from the day she purchased the vehicle, the steering was difficult to control. As time went on, the problem became worse. The vehicle was wobbly, choppy and careening. It was difficult to control on uneven pavement roads and streets and extremely difficult to maintain at 55 mph and higher. Each time the consumer went to the dealer, the vehicle was out of alignment. At times, the steering was very loose. Also, the shifting was erratic and lagged. It lagged from stop signs. It often failed to down shift to gain power needed on highway upgrades. When the consumer attempted to pass semi-trucks on an uneven pavement on the interstate, the vehicle pulled to the right, jerked to the left with almost an uncontrollable shifting and swaying. If there were curve, the vehicle would dangerously swing wide out into the curves. The steering wheel, would then freeze up and would become difficult to turn and steer safely. On one occasion, while driving on the interstate highway, the consumer had just passed a semi at a speed of 70 mph and as she was returning to the right lane, the vehicle stuttered and started to stop. She pushed the accelerator pedal to the floor and there was a dangerous lag before enough power came to the vehicle.

- Stevensville, MI, USA

problem #2

Jul 062012

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 1,100 miles
Vehicle (2012 Malibu) was purchased April 2012 - starting July 2012 vehicle would stall going down the road, with loss of engine, power assist steering and power assist brakes. Dealer replaced numerous modules, but it occurred again in Sept 2012 (3 times) then again in January 2013. Two body control modules have been replaced, engine control modules, two power steering modules, onstar module, transmission control module, etc. Unintended power steering assist occurs such that within approximately 5 seconds while driving down the road, power steering comes in and out as module fails (along with engine and transmission). Very unsafe to drive. Dealer would not replace vehicle and GM states they stand by last repair. It has been repaired 6 times now, but we refuse to drive vehicle, as we believe there must be a short somewhere. They keep stating it is defective modules and they just keep replacing them. Please see youtube videos: "2012 Chevy Malibu - unintended power steering assist failure mode"" "2012 Chevy Malibu dangerous electrical problem - any ideas""

- Dallas, TX, USA

problem #1

Jun 192012


  • 500 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the driver was driving 10 mph when a clicking sound emitted from under the hood and the power steering failed. The vehicle was towed to the dealer. The manufacturer was not contacted. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was unknown. The failure mileage was 500 and the current mileage was 550.

- Ocala, FL, USA

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