Notes: There are a fair-number of power steering related complaints which is a continuation of problems from the previous model year. Considering the problem tends to happen beyond the standard warranty (73k+) it's best to avoid this vehicle or at least be prepared for the $1,300+ repair.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
57,814 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 Traverse engine problems

engine problem

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2011 Chevrolet Traverse Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #26

Jan 062015

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 73,500 miles


Driving on the road and all of a sudden the dashboard lights up. The car tells me that the "stabilitrack needs to be serviced" and "reducing speed". the car just slows down and I can't go above 15 mph in the middle of the road with cars all around me driving at the same speed. Thank god I was able to pull over to the right and get off the road. I shut car off and waited a few minutes. I turned car on and the system reset itself and car was fine. Now its doing it again as my wife drove it today. Researching online, I see many people are having this same problem. GM needs to recall these vehicles and fix this problem. Someone is going to get killed in an accident!

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #25

Jan 082015

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 53,235 miles
I was driving along at 60 mph when my traction control light turned off, followed by "service stabilitrack", followed by "reduced engine power" and my vehicle went from 60 mph immediately down to 15 mph. If I were in heavy traffic or had any vehicles following me, this would have caused a major accident and potentially serious injuries, to me, my 1 year old son and whoever was behind me!!!

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #24

Oct 062014

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 116,000 miles
The first time this happened, I was driving a hilly back road from school the service stabilitrac and traction control warning lights came on then the engine power is being reduced warning light came on and the car immediately slowed to a crawl with very little steering control. I was able to drive it on the shoulder to my mechanic at no more than 20 mph and he said that 4 of the 6 coils needed to be replaced. A $700 repair. Second time it happened (12/3/14) I was driving on I-95 doing 65 and all the same lights came on again but this time the car instantly reduced the speed and I was crawling at 10mph. I had several near misses with other cars as we were all traveling at the posted speed in rush hour traffic. I struggled to get the car to the shoulder. I stopped the car and restarted and everything reset and I was able to drive for about a mile or two and it recurred. I happened 8 times before I was able to get it to the Chevy dealer. The dealer took 3 days to try and diagnose it and said it was probably the throttle control. They replaced it $493! and told me they did not know if it would fix the problem - it may last 1,000 miles or 20,000 miles. If it happens again I will have to bring it back and they would have to take apart the engine which would cost me $5000!!! this car is unsafe! I/my family could be injured or killed if it happens again! recall it! codes shown in diagnostic were P0300, P0305, P0221, P0121.

- Rising Sun, MD, USA

problem #23

Jan 042015

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 55,800 miles


Driving at 65 miles per hour, the truck feels like it is losing power, the more gas I give it does not matter. The console say the stability control is off. I pulled off to the side of the road turned the car off and restarted it. It went for about 3 miles and came back on again. In researching this seems to be a defect as this does not appear to be uncommon. This is extremely dangerous. I am glad I was driving and not my 17 year old daughter. The dealer wants $600 to fix a throttle cable.

- Manassas , VA, USA

problem #22

Dec 112014


  • 68,000 miles
I was driving from hagerstown md. When my Traverse went from me driving 70mph. To 35 miles ph. It put my Traverse in limp mode it shut down rightwhen iam getting ready to pass I barely got off of 81 South I didn't have enough power to even pull to the side of the highway the throttle body sensor shut down turned off the traction control slowed the engine down to almost a complete stop.

- Winchester, VA, USA

problem #21

Dec 022014

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
I was entering onto the freeway when my stabilitrack turned off by itself and my engine power was reduced. I was very nearly rear-ended as my car couldn't safely accelerate (accelerate at all really) as I was coming onto the freeway. A search on problems similar to this appears very prevalent within the Chevy line of vehicles, especially the Traverse. This is a very serious issue and was very unsafe where it occurred. It almost caused. It's very disappointing to see how many people are experiencing this same issue and Chevy hasn't issued any kind of recall to try and fix it.

- Olathe, KS, USA

problem #20

Nov 192014

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 52,000 miles


I bought a 2011 Traverse last winter. I was so excited about my new family car. Wednesday, the service stabilitrak, service traction control and reduced engine speed came on with no notice. Luckily, I was on a neighborhood side street taking my kids to school. I called to setup an appt to have a Chevy dealer look at it but after turning it off while filling the tires up the lights all went off. Called back to see if they still wanted to see it and they said no because it must have just been a sensor... appt canceled. Thursday drove with no problems. Now today, Friday, I hop on the expressway in Chicago traffic and bam right as I am merging, ding ding and my car just revs and won't get up past 40 mph, all the same service lights came on. So scary! I have my little kids in the backseat and terrified to pull over on the side of the eisenhower, slowly get to the next exit as I pray we won't get rear ended. Call as soon as I make it home for another appt and the first time any Chevy dealer near me has open is 4 days from now. Looks like we will be parked at home for the next 4 days. It really frustrates me that we bought this "reliable family vehicle" that I am now scared to drive my family in. It's even worse now googling this issue and seeing many other having the exact same issues and nothing is being done for us.

- Glendale Heights, IL, USA

problem #19

Nov 112014

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 67,000 miles
Stabilitrak control, anti lock brakes and engine speed reduced. Wife's car while on her way to work. There are hundreds if not thousands of consumers with this exact same issue with various makes/models of GM vehicles. Once the throttle body / throttle positions sensor becomes dirty, it sets off a series of failures causing the vehicle to reduce power to the point where it can only travel at about 35 mph. This is a very dangerous situation to place drivers in. I called my local Chevrolet dealer to inquire about whether or not this was covered under the 5 year 100,000 mile power train warranty and was told that it was. When the dealer verified that it was the throttle body, they told me that it would cost me about 500 dollars and that it was not covered under the powertrain warranty. This is a vital engine component. How can it not be considered to be part of the power train?

- Petoskey, MI, USA

problem #18

Nov 062013

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 5,700 miles
When driving my 2011 Traverse, it would reduce engine power and advise service. It would drop power to the point car was not drive able. I would shut car off. Wait and then able to drive it at low speeds (15 mph). This of course created a dangerous situation on the highway.

- Overland Park, KS, USA

problem #17

Sep 112013


  • 73,000 miles
When driving 2 different days this week on highway with cruise set service traction control light and service stabilitrak light came on.when car turned off it will go off and not come back on for a few days.

- Chesapeake, OH, USA

problem #16

Mar 152014

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 38,000 miles


Vehicle was 2011 Chevy Traverse w/ AWD with history (four instances) of engine oil leaks/requiring engine removal and reinstall. Vehicle was on interstate when AWD/vehicle stability control lights went on. Dic indicated 'service stabiltrack', 'service AWD' and 'AWD disabled'. at that time, vehicle was 'chugging' but shortly after chugging got much worse to the extent that the vehicle could not accelerate or maintain speed at cruise, or without cruise up normal hills on an interstate. When gas pedal was pressed further, RPM/speed would increase but then drop sharply (500-1000rpm) multiple times and no further power could be applied. Vehicle slowed down to about 50mph at the top of a hill. Happened for the next 15-20 miles until it could be pulled over. Vehicle was taken in once right after original occurrence, all three lights had gone off at point and vehicle drove normally after that. Service center indicated a wheel censor (front right) was reading defective information. They cleaned 'dust' from the sensor. Happened again about two weeks later, similar circumstances/results. Service center indicated wheel sensor was bad, they replaced (at my cost) and had no further instances for about four months. Similar situation happened again today (7/19/2014, conditions and results). However, the engine chugging was much worse and vehicle could not be driven safely on the interstate, would not accelerate or maintain safe interstate speed.

- North Liberty, IA, USA

problem #15

Aug 232011

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 4,007 miles
Hesitation upon acceleration.incident reported to cox Chevy 08/23/11, maher Chevy 11/02/12,04/16/14 and an accident 06/07/14 with bodily injury hitting a concrete wall.

- St Petersburg, FL, USA

problem #14

Apr 252014


  • 76,780 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Traverse. The contact stated that while driving approximately 70 mph, the reduce engine speed warning message illuminated and the vehicle independently decelerated. The failure was recurring. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic, who stated that the throttle body position sensor needed to be replaced. The vehicle has not been repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 76,780.

- Sevierville, TN, USA

problem #13

Feb 022014


  • 58,000 miles
While driving on the highway, multiple warnings and lights came on and speed was reduced by the engine to 20 mph from 65mph. If there had been another vehicle behind us at the time we would have easily been hit because of the rapid deceleration. The fix was to replace the throttle body on the engine. After much research this appears to be a very common issue in Chevrolet vehicles, and because of the manner of the vehicle slowing down so rapidly I fear that there have probably already been accidents related to this issue.

- Cottage Grove, MN, USA

problem #12

Jan 172014


  • 59,154 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Traverse. The contact stated while traveling approximately 75 mph the vehicle stalled without warning. The contact had to coast vehicle onto the emergency lane. The following warning light indicators were illuminated, service engine light, engine power reduced, and service traction contol sensor as the vehicle stalled. The contact attempted to restart the vehicle at least three times. The contact was able to restart the vehicle and then it stalled again. An authorized dealer diagnosed that the throttle body needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 59154.

- Louisburg, KS, USA

problem #11

Mar 212014

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 71,905 miles
My check engine light came on Wednesday, March 19, 2014. On Friday morning, while driving to work, my car accelerated and then slowed down; going from approximately 70 mph to 15 mph. When I took it to the dealer they called me back and said the throttle body had gone bad and had to be replace. I was told by several other people that a throttle body should not be going bad this early in a car; as a matter if fact I have drive several cars well over 100,000 miles and never had a problem with the throttle body. This needs to be a recall because this is a family vehicle and many people are transporting precious family cargo. A car should not forcibly be decreasing from 70 to 15 mph. Having a bad crash is an understatement. Also the air conditioning has already had to be checked. This vehicle is putting a bad taste in my mouth. Anymore problems and it will get traded in. I will not get another Chevrolet for sure.

- Lyman, SC, USA

problem #10

Dec 092013


  • 61,900 miles
Driving on the highway and all of a sudden there was an alert on the dashboard saying that "traction control off" then immediately after another alert came on stating that "engine power has been reduced". I was unable to accelerate fully. I turned the car off and back on and it reset it but the same alerts came back on minutes later. The next day I took it to the dealership and they said the throttle body had to be replaced. This seems to be a common occurrence for these vehicles and after researching online I have found hundreds of others that have had the same problem. This is extremely dangerous and Chevy/GM should seriously consider recalling this part.

- Aurora, IL, USA

problem #9

Dec 092013

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 48,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Traverse. The contact stated that while driving approximately 20 mph, there was a sudden loss of engine power as the check engine warning light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the throttle body needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure and current mileage was 48,000.

- Dilworth, MN, USA

problem #8

Jun 102013


  • 26,285 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Chevrolet Traverse. The contact stated while traveling 65 mph, the vehicle erroneously accelerated. The vehicle continued to accelerate for several minutes. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the failure could not be replicated. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 26,285.

- San Juan, TX, USA

problem #7

Feb 092013

Traverse 6-cyl

  • 45,000 miles
We were moving from South Carolina to Wisconsin which is a 1,000 mile trip. On the morning of February 9th, 2013 we were about to enter cincinnati on the second leg of our trip when all the sudden the dash displayed a message that said trak system failed, soon followed by another message indicating the engine power had been reduced. The vehicle went from 60 mph to approximately 20 mph and the engine began to shudder with a feeling of loss of firing cylinders, and loss of vehicle steering control. So we pulled over, read the book, and shut the car off like it said, waited 15 seconds and then turned the car back on. The car was fine and we finished that leg of the trip hoping nothing else would happen. It happened on a very busy stretch of I-75N near covington, ky and it could have caused a crash. My entire family was in the car. So I called and spoke to a GM technician at tire discounters in cincinnati who stated it probably is your throttle body as he had just repaired the same issue on another GM car. Being that it was Saturday, there was nothing I could do and we had to still travel an additional 300 miles to Wisconsin. The car only had 45,000 miles on it the day of incident. The next day February 10 2013 we continued our trip and right in the middle of Indiana the same issue happened and again we took the same action. Again it could have caused an accident but we were able to pull over. On Tuesday February 19, 2013 I took the car in to be looked at by andrew Chevrolet in glendale, wi and the diagnosis was the same. The throttle body had gone bad and would need to be repaired for $519. The service manager stated that they too had changed them on multiple cars. GM needs to recall the 2011 Traverse and repair this part before someone gets in an accident and gets killed. I also noticed this is the second time in three months NHTSA has received a complaint about this issue. Udpated 03/14/13

- Brown Deer, WI, USA

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