NHTSA — Tires: Sidewall Problems


fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
13,159 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.

2004 Pontiac GTO wheels / hubs problems

wheels / hubs problem

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2004 Pontiac GTO Owner Comments

problem #10

Sep 202005

GTO 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 16,000 miles


Inner sidewall of both front tires were worn down the steel radials. This was observed with 16,000 miles on the car. Regular tire rotations occurred, wear seemed to take place over the duration of an extended road trip.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #9

Nov 072007

GTO 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles
I was on the internet and I came across defects on the 2004-2006 Gtos and since I have one I investigated. The complaints were that the stock size tires were rubbing on the struts in front of the vehicle. So, I have a 2004 GTO with only 7,800 miles on it. I went out turned said vehicle on turned the wheel almost till it would stop and peeked under the car and low and behold contact with strut;on both sides. Called GM in detroit, they had no idea of the problem. Ignored me. Did not return my phone calls, they said they would. Took vechicle to dealership to fix car. Dealer said everything looked good except the camber in front of car. Dealer fixed camber, made me pay $100. Dollars. I call GM 10 times in detroit, have not received call back from my representitive. Also spent $400 on two new 235/45 for the front; because even after they "fixed it" the stock tires wre stll 1/4 inch away from the strut. So it has cost me $500 to hopefully fix the car I do not even own.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #8

Jul 012007

GTO 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 45,000 miles
Last year I puchased a 2004 GTO. Brand new tires along with a balance and alignment were done with the purchase. Shortly after the purchase(approx. 5,000 miles) I started to notice a vibration in my steering wheel. I took it to the local Pontiac dealership after realizing that a small chunk of my tire had been taken out of the inside wall of my front left tire. Pontiac sent me away telling me there was no rubbing. I read up on some forums saying that it was because of the width of the tires(245) so I decided to purchase new tires for the front(225). I have now had the tires on the front for 6,000 miles and the driver side tire blew out 2 nights ago. Looking at the inside of the tire I saw that the whole inside had been shredded away and the passenger side is close behind it with all of the metal cords showing. Now with putting the skinnier tires on your would think the problem would be corrected since Pontiac was saying it was the width of the tire which was causing it to rub but in my experience that was false. This should seriously be taken into consideration of having a recall on whatever is making these tires blow out considering the money that people have already spent on the car and then having to replace new tires everytime they blow out.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #7

May 152007


  • miles


I am an owner of a defective 2004 Pontiac GTO. I am also an automotive designer and engineer. My wife and I first learned of the potential for this problem along with many others through our company owned websites. www.aedcentral.com. proper rotation techniques were used etc to insure this was not an issue with our vehicle. Under my first inspections this problem was not detected. Yesterday my, wife and I were driving in the 2004 Pontiac GTO in the rule area, California mountains, and discovered this potential problem in the most frightening manner. While driving at the posted speed limit 55 mph through curves in the mountains and vehicle had almost drifted right off a cliff's edge. Realizing that we were heading in this direction, off the cliff, I was forced to engage the emergency brake and slide the vehicle away from going off the cliff. Two lives could have been lost due to this engineering oversight. The outer rubber layer on the inner edges of the front tires started to roll off the inner sub-trait, thus allowing an uncontrollable lateral shift in the car's vector/direction. Right and left inner sidewall section of both front tires were clearly friction-cut or rubbed clean through from contact with the bottom of the spring pad on the lower end of the strut assembly. The packaging tolerance complied with the factory tire choice has closed this required space to an unsafe dimension and with time, bound to an eminent pre-mature component failure. The vehicle was taken to the Pontiac dealer, still under warranty, and we were told this was tire wear and not covered under warranty. Thank you for your time, and am looking forward to your reply.

- Aguanga, CA, USA

problem #6

Dec 052006

GTO 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 30,000 miles
Had noises coming from front suspension, took vehicle to GM dealer they replaced strut and did alignment under warranty. But had to replace front tires on my own with less than 30,000 on the tires. The set I replaced on the front had both come in contact with the struts and wore the inside of the sidewall out, cut a groove into the driver' S side that blew the tire out. The tires were replaced at 36,000 miles, and now has 8, 000 miles on them and were showing the same kind of sidewall wear to the fronts. Had the front of the car aligned again and it was to specs. No worn out suspension parts were found. The tire store had noticed this before on other vehicles the same as mine, and had them change tire size to give the tires clearance from the struts. So again another tire change.

- West Bend, WI, USA

problem #5

Mar 272007

GTO 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,589 miles
I dropped off my 2004 Pontiac GTO at the local dealership on about 3/21/07 for a number of warranty issues. One of the "issues" to be checked was a slight vibration in the steering wheel. The dealership stated the problem was due to wheel alignment and all four tires needed to be replaced. I don't drive the car in inclement weather, avoid potholes, and there was no pulling to either side. As I had only 15,589 miles on the vehicle, I declined the alignment & tires when called by the service representative. Upon pickup, the rep indicated the tire were extremely dangerous and pointed out how the steel belts were showing on the inside of the right front tire. The rep indicated that tire replacement on this vehicle was common for that mileage. Researching on the internet disclosed these tires have a 35,000 warranty and that there had been other complaints related to premature tire wear on 2004 and 2005 Gtos. Complaints have been filed stating the tires were rubbing the struts, primarily front left, causing the premature failures. Today, March 30, I pulled the front left tire off the vehicle to look at the tire and strut. There are obvious wear marks on the strut and a groove cut into the inside of the tire. All four tires have excessive wear on the inside due to regular tire rotation. It appears GM misaligned the wheels at the factory and installed too large of tires creating a situation of inadequate spacing between the struts and the tires. I have requested GM rectify the situation and am waiting for its reply. I am filing this complaint with NHTSA because this is a serious safety concern that may result in fatal accidents due to tire blowouts caused by inaccurate alignment and insufficient clearance. Please investigate this issue and require the manufacturer to recall 2004 and 2005 Gtos and rectify this dangerous situation.

- Littleton, CO, USA

problem #4

Mar 262007

GTO 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 1 miles


Reference: 2004 Pontiac GTO stock correct size front tires were rubbing on the struts. Confirmed by Pontiac dealer. Tires wore out on the inner sidewall due to contact with the strut. Victory Pontiac, calera, Alabama 205-664-0046 will not correct this after being handed the NHTSA paper adressing this issue. Just confirmed it was a problem that is happening that I must pay to fix. The 2004 Pontiac GTO is under full gmac warranty as well as an extended platinum warranty.

- Calera, AL, USA

problem #3

Oct 172006


  • 20,000 miles
I would like to add my vehicle to the complaint list about the '04 Pontiac GTO tire wear problem where the front tires contact the struts. I became aware of the problem at 20,000 miles when I was doing my 5,000 mile tire rotation and found both front tires with abnormal wear where the sidewall meets the tread. I brought this to the attention of my dealer and directed them to see other complaints identical to mine as shown on gtoforum.com. They said they new of no service bulletins released yet. I removed the original wheels from the car and replaced them with properly offset ones. The dealer did an alignment and found one wheel was in camber limits and the other was slightly out. Both indicated wear, but the one that was out of alignment by.3 degrees was worn down to metal strands. No damage occurred other than that to my original tires and wallet for replacement.

- Winston-Salem, NC, USA

problem #2

Dec 202006

GTO 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 5,000 miles
- the contact has owns 2004 Pontiac GTO. The contact stated that the front tires were rubbing on the struts. The car shook very badly due to the tire rubbing against the strut. This happened with only 5,000 miles on the tires, and the tires had to be replaced. The contact he replaced the tires, and the next set of tires did the exact samething. This happened only with the front tires. The contact sold the vehicle for that reason, because the manufacturer would not even look at the vehicle. The contact stated that the problem with the vehicle was under warranty at the time he was refused the repair. The current mileage was 26000. Updated 03/30/07.

- Augusta, GA, USA

problem #1

Mar 142005

GTO 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles
Tire rubbing on the passenger side due to lack of testing from Pontiac.. the sidewall has a new grove cut in the tire all the way around now and im worried about tire malfunction.

- Ridgeland, MS, USA

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