Notes: Consumer Reports road tests has noted deficiencies in the 2012 Avenger with regard to engine noise, acceleration, braking, handling, transmission, fuel economy, driving position and rear visibility. But at least it has a cool marketing campaign ... right?


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
60,774 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 Dodge Avenger engine problems

engine problem

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2012 Dodge Avenger Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #24

Nov 112016


  • miles


This is the second time that I only have heat on the drivers side. I was told that the problem is caused by casting sand that was in the engine which causes the radiator, heater core, and oil cooler to plug up. Not a cheap fix and I have seen complaints from many others with same issue. Manufacturer aware of problem.

- Matawan, NJ, USA

problem #23

Nov 222016


  • miles
Passenger heater side blows cold air. When changing ac/heater to/from fresh air and re-circulation a loud clicking noise happens. P0306 cylinder misfire when it rains water gets into the trunk though the spoiler.

- Buda, TX, USA

problem #22

Jun 202016


  • 50,313 miles
Poor heating system performance. Sludge builds up in the cooling system and restricts coolant flow to the heater core causing loss of heat in the passenger compartment. Loss of heat also effects the ability to de-ice or prevent ice and snow build up on the windshield in cold weather operation. This can create a hazardous condition as visibility is greatly reduced. Chrysler group llc has no cause for the sludge formation. The only resolution is to replace the radiator, oil cooler, heater core and radiator cap after completely flushing the cooling system. This is to be done at the owners expense and can cost over $2500.

- Kendall, NY, USA

problem #21

Mar 182016


  • 60,000 miles


The air bag warning light illuminated. Few days later began hearing a clicking under the dashboard behind the glove box. Received notice for recall. Due to location nearest Dodge dealership is 2 hours away. Decided to wait. A short time later, the car began to lose power briefly intermittently. Once again, due to location decided to wait. Two days ago the car stalled completely while traveling at 45 miles per hour. No steering, no brakes, nothing. Scared me. Trying to find someone locally to look at it. Today it died in the middle of a very busy intersection. Once again, coming to the intersection the car dropped below 1,000 rpms and then dies.

- Ridgecrest, CA, USA

problem #20

Nov 082013


  • 35,000 miles
The heater is blowing warm air from the drivers side but cold air on the passenger side. I took it to a mechanic and he said he thinks the heater core is blocked. I have looked at other complaints with the same exact situation and have come to find that it is a manufactures defect. My passengers freeze and the front window only defrosts on the drivers side causing poor visibility on the passenger side. The average cost to repair is around $1200 and I don't think car owners should have to pay that kind of money on an issue that was caused by the manufacturer. I would think that it would cause further damage to the engine if certain parts are not receiving coolant.

- Fletcher, NC, USA

problem #19

Jan 292016


  • 119,000 miles
I have continuosly been having problems with my brakes and rotors, engine stalling while driving, and the lock to my drivers side door isnt working properly. I have had my brakes and rotors repaired three times within a 4 month time frame. This is ridiculous. I dont know what kind of mechanical meltdown this vehicle is having. But some needs to provide some answers.

- Lithonia, GA, USA

problem #18

Dec 232015


  • 87,000 miles


Heater not working. (87,000 miles) took the car to the dealership where they gave me an estimate of $2500 to replace the entire coolant system (heater core, radiator, oil cooler, thermostat, water pump). The tech advised there was something restricting flow through the heater core. There is a 100,000 mile power train warranty on the car but they do not agree that the coolant system that cools the engine (power train) should be included. Where did the sediment/sludge come from? possibly oil contamination from the engine (power train)? this problem has been noted in numerous models and Dodge has released a statement to their techs to replace the entire coolant system because they know something they did is wrong. This is very similar to the problem GM had with dex-cool why is there not a recall for this problem the consumer should not be burdened with the failures of the manufacturer to provide a quality product. I hope this matter is taken seriously as it truly is a safety issue. If the heat does not work it is not just uncomfortable for the driver/passengers but it will also reduce visibility through the windshield since the defrost/heat does not work.

- Higginsville, MO, USA

problem #17

Dec 042015


  • 61,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Avenger. The contact stated that when the vehicle was started, a clicking noise was heard from the front end. While driving at any speed, the contact smelled burning wires from somewhere within the vehicle. The manufacturer was made aware of the failures. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The failure mileage was 61,000.

- Humble, TX, USA

problem #16

Dec 042015


  • 81,735 miles
I was driving when my car lost power multiple times with the key in the ingition. The third time all of the lights on the dash went off and I had to coast into a parking spot. I had to jump the vehicle to get it started

- Maple Heights, OH, USA

problem #15

Nov 272015


  • 54,320 miles
While driving on the interstate doing about 65mph at 5am, I disengaged the cruise control on my vehicle, my car all the sudden turned off and lost complete power, including steering, brakes, and acceleration. The key was still in the on position. This is a major safety hazard! had I not been able to coast and engage the emergency break, I would have crashed and most likely suffered serious bodily injuries or death. This is the third time this has happened to me and I have read this has happened to others already as well. The entire electrical system failed because my engine turned off as well as the dashboard completely went dark to include headlights, turn signals, and the hazard lights. My vehicle has stopped in motion all the sudden for no apparent reason two times in one week. I made an appointment with the dealership to get the vehicle diagnosed but I am still afraid to drive to the dealership because it may happen again while driving either on the highway, interstate, or on any street. I am not 100% certain what caused the vehicle to turn off while in motion 3 times already in one week but it has created a major safety hazard for myself and other motorist on the highway/interstate. I believe it has something to do with the electrical system or engine because the lost of complete power is what occurs each time.

- Interlachen, FL, USA

problem #14

Mar 042015


  • 73,396 miles


Engine shut off while driving twice then wouldn't start, had to get towed. It was diagnosed at code P0513 for invalid skim key and B1A25 for invalid key, I was on a neighbor street in srymna Delaware miles from home.

- Newcastle, DE, USA

problem #13

May 022015


  • 58,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Avenger. While driving at 25 mph uphill, the vehicle stalled without warning and rolled down the hill. Consequently, the vehicle struck a pole on the driver side door. The driver sustained minor injuries, but did not require medical attention. A police report was not filed. The vehicle was able to restart after one attempt. The failure did not recur. The vehicle was towed to the dealer, but was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 58,000.

- Warner Robins, GA, USA

problem #12

Feb 202015


  • 35,730 miles
While driving home with my pregnant wife at night, car all of a sudden stalled. After coming to a complete stop, car was put in park and restarted. Go out and inspected car even looking under hood. Nothing looked out of place so restarted car. Check engine light came on but car made no unusual noises and drove the last mile home with emergency flashers on. Car stalled once again one block from our home but again restarted. Took it to the dealership the following business day for a diagnostic where I was told it was the crankshaft position sensor and was not covered under the powertrain warranty. Total cost including labor to replace sensor was $224. This is a major safety issue. Thankfully my pregnant wife was not on the highway during heavy traffic. I called Dodge to inform them of the problem and they documented but didn't seem very concerned with issue. Again, stalling on a busy highway can result in a major accident

- Amherst, OH, USA

problem #11

Feb 052015


  • 36,500 miles
Driving home from work at 5:40 pm, 3 deer ran out and after slamming on brakes the last one was struck, head on. The hood buckled and the entire engine of the car imploded in flames. No airbags went off and the car immediately died. I was able to pull car over to the side of the road and get out of car however, the car burned completely. The car engulfed in flames and the engine, windows, entire inside, everything burned. There is no dash, no steering wheel, seats, front tires, etc are gone. There is very little left and the manufacturer had an investigation done and will not tell me why this happened. My husband has a 2014 Avenger and we want to know if it is safe. But were told my manufacturer representative they would not tell me because they would not want it out in the public.

- Amherst, WI, USA

problem #10

Mar 132014

Avenger 6-cyl

  • 30,000 miles
Hit a deer at 60 mph the car started on fire and completely burned up no air bags went off Dodge investigated but will not tell us why the car burned up.

- Amherst, WI, USA

problem #9

Feb 052015


  • 58,163 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Avenger. The contact stated that the vehicle stalled but would automatically restart. As a result, the ABS, the seat belt, and the traction warning lights illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the alternator needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 14V634000 (electrical system). The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 58,163.

- Stayton , OR, USA

problem #8

Dec 242014


  • 34,800 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Dodge Avenger. The contact stated that when the vehicle was taken in for an oil change, the technician notified her that the vehicle was leaking oil. The contact stated that the bolts that held down the oil pan were loose. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, where the bolts were tightened. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 34,800.

- Carthage, MO, USA

problem #7

May 192014


  • 30,000 miles
The contact rented a 2013 Dodge Avenger. The contact stated that the vehicle failed to start on the first attempt. The contact had to make several attempts to start the vehicle. In addition, the contact stated that while driving approximately 65 mph, the under carriage became separated from the vehicle. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was unavailable. The approximate failure mileage was 30,000. Updated 01/20/15

- San Diego , CA, USA

problem #6

Oct 282014


  • 410,234 miles
Lack of heat in the car. The system was flushed and found a huge amount of sludge build up due in the heater core. The windshield would not defrost enough for the car to be driven. We had a family emergency and could not drive it. The system could fail during a drive cycle of day with extreme cold weather and put my family in danger. Dodge has admitted it was due to a casting problem. I can not sell this vehicle or I will be upside down in the value. The cost of the fix at the dealer ship is over $1200.

- Farmville, NC, USA

problem #5

Oct 042014


  • 28,000 miles
[xxx] was driving down the 294 expressway and the car just turned off all electric items went dead. I called for a tow and was at the dealership 3 to 4 days. Dealer mechanic took car home same thing happened to him needed a tow to the shop. Then on 10/13 the car wouldn't start again. The alternator was replaced from first visit and Dodge says no codes are coming up and are not fixing anything. My guess it will continue happening until further investigated by Dodge. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Buffalo Grove, IL, USA

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