really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
20,200 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 Volt drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2013 Chevrolet Volt Owner Comments

problem #10

Apr 042016


  • 56,500 miles


While driving on the road, my hand pressed against the gear shifter and it shifted from L to D without pressing the gear release.

- Locust Grove, GA, USA

problem #9

Mar 232016


  • 32,800 miles
While driving down a road in indianapolis at 35 miles per hour, my car suddenly slowed down and a message reading " engine not available - service soon" appeared on my hud. My car only has 32,800 miles on it and a clean title. Nothing about my driving changed to cause this issue, it was sudden and without apparent cause. I had the car taken to the mechanic, and GM just reset the codes. It is driving ok for now, but a reset of codes is a temporary fix to the issue, and I've read extensively about many, many other Volt owners with the same issue. It is extremely dangerous to have your engine shut off while driving, especially if I had been on the high way during rush hour. This is something that needs looked into, and I feel that GM is trying to bury it with resets which aren't working for most people.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #8

Jan 152016


  • 52,000 miles
While driving at 40mph on a straight road, I went to change the drive mode, but I accidentally hit the power button. When I hit the power bottom the car shut down. I was not able to restart the car while the shift lever was in drive, so I had to coast to a stop, place the vehicle in park, and reboot the car. I was very surprised that I was able to power off the car while I was driving around 40-45 mph.

- Corona, CA, USA

problem #7

Sep 162015


  • miles


While entering in the highway the car started to decelerate regardless the fact the gas pedal was pushed several times. The car decelerated and then stalled. The car has been rear ended by the car behind. This could have been a much more serious accident and it was a vehicle failure.

- Royal Oak, MI, USA

problem #6

Apr 132015

Volt 4-cyl

  • 17,400 miles
A warning message appeared on the dash, which said "propulsion power is reduced, " followed by, "engine not available. Service soon, " as well as a check engine light. I pressed the onstar button to find out what was wrong but they had never heard of the error message and could not establish communication with the vehicle to perform diagnostics. While on hold with onstar, the vehicle began to spontaneously decelerate very rapidly despite my attempts to accelerate, in the middle of fast highway traffic. I made it over to the side of the road safely, limping along at 3-10 mph, with the help of a good samaritan who blocked traffic for me. This is a spontaneous occurrence, with no maintenance negligence to explain the event. The car was towed to a dealer, which has yet to determine the source of the issue.

- Berkley, MI, USA

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problem #5

Jun 162013

Volt 6-cyl

  • 21,000 miles
Was entering highway in the dark and went to put the car into "hold" mode to run the gas engine and save battery charge. This requires pushing a button 3 times. I reached over and pushed the button. Accidently was pushing the "power" button which is right below the "mode" button shutting down the car. The entire car shuts off, no lights, powertrain, ps, pb just dead. This is easy to do if you are watching the road and just glance down to the buttons. They are placed too close together and this is going to be a serious problem if in traffic or on winding roads. Numerous reports of this on the Volt forum!

- Sutherlin, OR, USA

problem #4

Aug 312012


  • 800 miles


When in low gear (higher regenerative braking), when braking and going over some bumps, the regen braking stops causing a feeling of a lurch forward. A 'low traction" light appears. This causes a reduction in braking force of approximately 35bhp, a very unsafe condition. An anti-lock brake style pulsation of the regen should be employed, not a discontinuation of the regen brakes.

- Manchester, NH, USA

problem #3

Apr 062014


  • 19,900 miles
My Chevy Volt was at a car wash and the attendant was able to turn the car off while still in "D" gear. The car is able to roll and move while in this gear. I was surprised so I tested it for myself, and sure enough you're able to turn the power off and exit the vehicle while still in 'd'. every car I've owned (automatic) forces you to shift into P or N before allowing the key to remove. This is a great concern for me, so I called my Volt advisor today and was informed that other customers rolled into their garage, and the behavior was by design and normal.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #2

Jun 062013

Volt 4-cyl

  • 1,400 miles
This is the second Volt I owned in a year that exhibited this issue. Upon braking and passive deceleration the car makes a loud audible whining noise coming from the engine compartment. The dealer states it is a regenerative brake bearing failure. This issue is related to the bearing cage failing causing the bearing to lose its integrity. GM-Volt.com/forum/showthread.php?17877-loud-whining-during-regen.

- Nashville, TN, USA

problem #1

Jun 172013

Volt 4-cyl

  • 196 miles
I leased a new 2013 Volt on Friday and drove it to work and home on Monday. The battery display showed it was at minimum, zero miles remaining. The Volt was running with the internal combustion engine. As I pulled out of a parking lot, "┐propulsion power is reduced"Ł, "┐engine not available"Ł, and "service stabilitrac" displayed on the driver information center. After going about 500 feet, I stopped at an intersection to make a left turn and the Volt stalled. I turned on the flashers and attempted to restore power by pressing the brake and the power button. The displays lit up but the instrument cluster continued to display "┐initializing-wait to shift"Ł. I turned the Volt off by pressing the power button again and attempted to restore power several times with the same result. Cars behind me were attempting to pull around on the left side but were blocked by cars turning onto the two-lane street. I pushed the on-star button and requested assistance. Soon, a Volt specialist came on the line and said she suspected the security system or the 12V battery. She had me turn everything off and walk 200 feet from the car. When I returned and tried to start the Volt, it started briefly but shut down. She said the 12V battery might be low and they would have the tow truck driver bring booster cables to charge the battery. I had managed to push the Volt to the curb and got some cables to boost it. The Volt initialized and the displays looked normal. I drove to the next intersection and stopped for the light. When the light changed, it stalled again. I was able to continue to my house on battery power but it would not go up the slope of the driveway. I tried to charge it but the charge cycle would not start. The next morning, it had "┐plug in to charge" light on. I started the charge cycle. It goes to the dealer tonight.

- Dublin, OH, USA

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