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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
30,624 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.

2013 Chevrolet Malibu steering problems

steering problem

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2013 Chevrolet Malibu Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #80

Jan 142017


  • 62,000 miles


My 2013 Malibu keeps having power steering failure. The power steering light flashed and stayed on. At the same time it lock the steering wheel while driving. I see this is a major problem happening with the Malibu 2013 models and owners have been complaining about this defect to the dealers. Not sure if there has been any recalls on this; however, the defects are causing people driving the Malibu to have accidents because the power steering locks as soon as the power steering light is displayed. The car also seems to stall a bit when the light comes on. The wheels are locked and I cannot turn the wheels at all until it unlocks on its own.

- Statesville, NC, USA

problem #79

Dec 292016


  • 68,000 miles
Several times now the car radio and electrical has just shut off. Shortly there after --- the steering locked up while driving. Such that there was an inability to maintain control, and the steering wheel was unable to be moved at all. This happened multiple times. This vehicle was purchased for my daughter and my grandchildren. Thus safety is a major concern. If indeed my daughter were to have been in a busy intersection when this happened today, she or my grandchildren could have easily been killed. Chevrolet dealer refuse to do anything without a recall and have said that the diagnostic would be $100 to perform. In my 30 years of driving experience and my husbands 22 years of active duty army service and many mechanical fixes that we have done to numerous vehicles we have never seen something as dangerous that a manufacturer would refuse to recall. This is a huge safety issue and god forbid anything happens to my daughter or my grandchildren there is now documentation to request Chevrolet fix the problem, as I will be sure to hold them accountable for their negligence. We have maintained proper maintenance, there are no fault codes that have come up that will indicate an issue that would cause the steering to just lock up straight. We had the battery checked, the battery terminals checked and we keep trying to narrow down the cause. But we are now at an impasse and this is most certainly a manufacturer's defect. This is an issue that we have found on multiple forums in common with other owners. Vehicle was in motion, mid turn, city street, and unable to make the turn. Would have crashed had been going faster, or had other cars been coming.

- Watertown, NY, USA

problem #78

Jun 012016


  • 75,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the steering seized and the vehicle experienced a loss of electrical functions and power. The failure occurred without warning. The vehicle was towed to the dealer, but the failure could not be replicated. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 75,000.

- Wellington, FL, USA

problem #77

Dec 112016


  • 61,212 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu. While driving various speeds, the rpms decreased and the vehicle stalled. The vehicle would only restart after receiving a jump start. In addition, the check engine warning indicator illuminated and battery charge, stability track, and service power steering warning messages appeared on the instrument panel display. The contact mentioned that the failures occurred on several occasions. The vehicle was taken to a dealer, but the cause of the failure could not be determined. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 61,212.

- Upper Marlboro, MD, USA

problem #76

Jan 122016


  • 53,000 miles
There are periods of time when I put my turn signal on and my wheel lock up, the radio turns off and all the power shuts down in the car. The brakes feel like they are locking.

- Goldsboro, NC, USA

problem #75

Dec 012016


  • 57,700 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that the vehicle was experiencing power loss and loss of power steering. There were no warning indicators illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The failure mileage was 57,700.

- Shirley, IN, USA

problem #74

Nov 152016


  • 77,452 miles


2013 Chevrolet Malibu (lt) has been experiencing serve electrical issues. This highly dangerous defect I have been experiencing as well yet there is no recall! first the my link/navigation/radio module would shut off and come back on. While this occurs, the battery voltage would jump down then jump back up. I called Chevy/GMC and they recommended to shut the car off, remove the key, open the driver side door so the computer can reset itself. It continued to happy through the course of couple hours then finally stopped and was working from over the course of 4 days. As of yesterday the vehicle completely shut off, entire touchscreen module shut off, and turned back on in a split second. Once the car turned on, the steering wheel was completely tight, almost locked, and we would barely turn into our driveway while in motion on a 25pm street. Thank god I was not coming off a highway or driving fast like reports of this issue like other consumers but this is dangerous. I am terrified of this vehicle and will be taking it to Chevy. There are over a hundred complaints and videos I saw after I looked up if this issue was common, which it appears to be, online. This issue needs to be on the recall list because this can cause accidents and someone can get seriously injured.

- Carteret, NJ, USA

problem #73

Oct 252016

Malibu 4-cyl

  • 53,000 miles
While driving the radio and interior lights go out and power steering stops working. Seems to happen when left blinker is used. Headlights will flicker when this happens also. There is no warning prior to shutdown. One occurrence car completely shut off on its own after power surge. Very unsafe to drive this vehicle, I almost hit a parked car because of this failure. It happens on highway or neighborhood. Car is parked at dealership til problem can be resolved. Odometer has 53,000 miles on it.

- Wentzville, MO, USA

problem #72

Jun 012016


  • 48,000 miles
2013 Chevy Malibu continues to power down while driving. Radio will shut off then electrical panel and often times it would lose complete power and cause the power steering to shut off. Very dangerous. Took to dealership 3 times they continue to finagle the negative wiring. But the problem persists. No check engine light; no fix. Something is defective and pose rlly Chevy can't figure it out.

- Auburn, CA, USA

problem #71

Oct 212016


  • 44,000 miles
Vehicle moving on city street, lost power to radio, navigation system, etc., then lost steering. Lost steering while making U-turn. Lost steering in forward and reverse while parking vehicle. Power to control panels shut down during both incidents. Occurred briefly on highway while traveling at high rate of speed. The loss of power and steering has become more frequent and lasting for a longer period of time. Vehicle is now at dealership for same issue. I purchased vehicle 3 months ago. My 17 Y/O son uses this vehicle and I am concerned about his safety. I looked into this problem on the web and discovered that this has been an ongoing problem with this make and model. I received a phone call from the dealership where my car is being serviced. They cannot find a problem. This was expected based on what I have read. I find it hard to believe that they have never heard of this happening before especially since GM has recalled earlier models with the same problem but refuse to do anything about the 2013. You cannot understand the nervousness you feel before getting into the driver's seat unless you have experienced this yourself. For GM and dealership to knowingly allow a person to purchase this vehicle and drive off their lot with a serious issue such as this is mind blowing.

- Plympton, MA, USA

problem #70

Oct 162016


  • 66,400 miles


My car initially started with the radio and touch screen powering off for a few seconds. Then, I was driving and went to make a left turn, the radio power went off as well as the steering wheel locked up, again only for a few seconds. Now, when it happens (it's happening more frequently), the headlights and dash lights flicker as well as the radio power shuts off and the steering locks up. It all only lasts around 4-5 seconds, but can be very dangerous at the wrong time. I took it to the dealer who could not reproduce the problem, in which I explained it's sporadic and unpredictable. This is becoming a safety issue and more frightening that dealerships are unaware of the issue or how to fix it. GM really needs to do something about this before it causes a serious accident.

- Streetsboro, OH, USA

problem #69

Sep 222016

Malibu 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,968 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving at any speed, the electronic screen blanked out, the engine shut down and the steering wheel seized. The vehicle was driven to the dealer. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The failure recurred multiple times. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 49,968. Updated 12/01/16*****updated 12/22/16

- Ridgefield Park, NJ, USA

problem #68

Aug 222016


  • 70,000 miles
On numerous occasions my 2013 Malibu has lost power causing a steering issue. It could be while driving, turning, stopping or accelerating. The car will lose power to the touch screen radio causing the screen to go black, then I lose the steering momentarily and then everything will come back on. This can happen once or sometimes it continues to happen which causes the service stabilitrack warning light to come on or the service power steering light to come on. This has also led to the car stalling and losing all electricity and then starting back up right away. The more electronics you use such as the blinker causes the problem to get worse and usually ends up in the car stalling. I have taken it to the dealer four separate times for this issue and nothing has been fixed. I have not had my car more than a week since August 22,2016 because I refuse to drive the car until it is fixed. The dealer is focusing on my after market remote starter which is wrong seeing there are many of the same occurrences listed on tis website.

- Hanson, MA, USA

problem #67

Aug 132016


  • 35,655 miles
While driving car instrument panel turns off, after which steering locks up and brakes become inoperable. Instrument panel turns off for seconds, then as the instrument panel turns back on, all messages on instrument panel flash (ie engine light, low battery, etc). Most common message is about stabilink. Even after instrument panel turns back on, the steering wheel will remain stiff and hard to move until you leave the car off for an extended period of time. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to the problem, other than driving it. I've had it happen in stop and go traffic where I'm going from not moving to at max 5 mph, I've had it happen on an empty highway going 65 mph, I've had it happen two minutes into my drive, and I've had it happen 40 minutes into my drive. Steering wheel does not always lock up in the middle of a turn, but most frequently it happens when making a sharp turn. I have video of the occurrence of the steering wheel and what happens to the instrument panel but am unable to upload it. I've tried to get the whole thing on video but it really just depends on if someone is in the car with me or if my phone was at the ready and I'm in a safe environment to record. It's scary enough to have the steering and brakes be useless to me, so my Focus is usually more on controlling the car.

- Fair Oaks, CA, USA

problem #66

Aug 242016


  • 59,588 miles
The check engine light comes on and stays on - when checked at the dealer they told me no code found for two years, then as time went on it started adding service power steering and ac/DC shut down. After numerous visits to the dealer and two major repairs, the check engine light still comes on, and the power steering locks up. On August 24, 2016, I was driving 50+ mph on a curvy road when the check engine light came on, followed immediately by the service power steering, followed by something stabilizer, followed by ac/DC shut down, to engine overheated idle engine. The power steering locked up and I was unable to steer the car and ran off the road. The car was towed to the dealer who had just worked on the car for the second time in a month, and they found no codes - no surprise! I complained to Chevy for the third time at corporate level and they had denied my claim as being safety related. I find it hard to believe that a car you suddenly can't steer isn't considered a safety issues. I also find it hard to believe that Chevy can't recognize that there is a problem with the 2013 Malibu. How many people have to die before they address this issue? also, why are they waiting on codes when the problem is most likely an electrical/computer problem. If the computer isn't working its no surprise that the warnings are not throwing a code! common sense! also, a car doesn't throw warning lights and check engine lights without something setting it off! hence you have a problem!

- Martinez, GA, USA

problem #65

Sep 082016


  • 48,000 miles
While driving down the highway first the windshield wipers quit during a down pour, the anti traction was malfunctioning on the screen then said anti theft system needed service then the steering went out and locked the car down. All of this happened while the car remained running. Was very scary. Have done some research and it appears GM is aware of a problem. The car is currently at the dealership. No known reason why yet although the dealership stated it did this to them when they were trying to pull it in the garage. GM needs to figure this out and issue a recall before there is serious injury including possible death the car was in motion on a highway when this occurred

- Mattoon, IL, USA

problem #64

May 312016


  • 52,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu. While driving various speeds, the electrical system failed. As a result, the power steering seized. The failure recurred numerous times. In addition, the ignition switch failed to release the key and the check engine warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed and the sensor circuit was replaced in the camshaft. The manufacturer was notified of the failures. The VIN was unknown. The approximate failure mileage was 52,000.

- Muscatine, IA, USA

problem #63

Sep 022016


  • miles
I got my car 6 months ago, and now my car steering wheel locked, and lost battery voltage, I'm getting message to service wheel steering system ann battery charge system

- Albany, NY, USA

problem #62

Aug 112016


  • 80,000 miles
While driving, all of the sudden the raio/ screen goes out, steering locks up! has happened right after started, day & night, may be fine for an hour to 4 or 5 hours, never know! has happened when turning, very dangerous! I've almost had 4-5 accidents due to this problem! Chevy says they haven't had any knowledge! dought this, complaints all over the internet. This started around 45,000 ruth just the radio /screen going off for a few seconds, by 60,000 started effecting the steering! I now have 80,000 miles on car. This needs quick attention from ntsb, wonder if any deaths from this? help!

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #61

Jul 312016


  • 66,300 miles
Our 2103 Chevy Malibu "loses electrical power and power steering" whuile being driven. This is now happening even more frequently. The dash and steering, etc goes blank and resets after a few seconds. This is happening more often and is dangerous. I see on the internet that dozens or hundreds of other 2013 Malibu owners are having the same problem. Some have had accidents as a result. My mechanic is not able to find an error code, nor to fix, and it seems like neither GM nor the other mechanics are able to fix either. This happens in a variety of movement settings, slow speed, high speed, turning and not, etc. This last happened 5+ times the evening of July 31.

- Raymond, NE, USA

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