NHTSA — Electrical System Problems

2005 Pontiac Sunfire (Page 2 of 3)


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
63,102 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.

2005 Pontiac Sunfire electrical problems

electrical problem

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2005 Pontiac Sunfire Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #25

Mar 012011

Sunfire 4-cyl

  • 70,000 miles


In looking up what the problem with my car I have found that several other cars seem be having the same problems. The instrument panel cluster works when it feels like it. Most days the only instrument that is working is the speedometer. Generally I use a garmin to make sure that I am at the correct speed. The temperature gauge and the tachometer is no longer working. Recently I have notice that the lights in the radio are not all lighting up. Seems that this should be a recall issue that the dealer should be handling for the amount of complaints I am finding on this vehicle. This problem seems to be a common problem with the 2005 Pontiac Sunfire.

- Conesus, NY, USA

problem #24

Aug 102011

Sunfire 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
We have a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire with 50000 miles on it. The other day the speedometer started fluctuating erratically. It is now stuck on 50mph. After reading several forums on the internet, it is very apparent that this is a common problem with the Sunfire and cavalier vehicles. The instrument panel cluster is defective on these vehicles and it also affects the other gauges. GM has not issued a recall despite the numerous complaints and it is a 500 to 800 dollar repair bill to replace the instrument cluster. To me this is a serious safety issue. Not knowing the correct speed of the vehicle at any given time is an issue. There are several instances on car complaints.com where people have been driving causing panic when their speedometer starts jumping around. To me the car manufacturers are depending on unreliable electronics to do vital tasks that used to be done by more reliable and safer mechanical means. Example being the Toyota throttle problem. It is my hope that if enough complaints are filed, a forced GM recall could be obtained. We are already paying for GM's mistakes through the government bailout. It's time they paid for theirs.

- Oregon, OH, USA

problem #23

Jun 072011


  • 93,000 miles
The instrument panel, driving along and all of a sudden all gauges are lost including speedometer. This happens intermittently, with no rhyme or reason then comes back on own and goes out again. Includes all gauges on instrument panel. Stays out for up to half hour or more.

- Pleasant Valley, NY, USA

problem #22

Dec 102010

Sunfire 4-cyl

  • 121,509 miles


I have a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire 4 door, VIN [xxx]. I have been generally happy with the car. Starting in early December of 2010, my entire intrument panel cluster stopped working. It started with the fuel gauge showing out of the range of the gauge and then the temperature gauge started malfunctioning and reading artificially high. I brought it to scherer Chevrolet, Buick, GMC in kitchener, [xxx] where I work. I asked if there were any hidden or secret warranties on this as I didn't feel this was something that should go on a car. They said there wasn't. they did extend me a "goodwill" discount but even with that it cost me $635.55 parts and labour to replace the instrument cluster. I intend to write to GM Canada and include copies of these other reports and try and negotiate a refund as I think this repair should be covered. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6)

- Ontario, N1h 2r7, 00, USA

problem #21

Oct 092010


  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire. While driving approximately 35-65 mph, the contact noticed the entire instrument panel failed to function including the speed odometer and fuel gauge. The failure occurred during extremely hot or cold weather temperatures. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer who stated the failure was related to a faulty instrument cluster. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 60,000.

- Berwick, PA, USA

problem #20

Jun 212008

Sunfire 4-cyl

  • 35,100 miles
Own a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire and the instrument cluster is failing. It started a month after my vehicle went out of warranty. I took it to the dealership and they said, "oh your car is not really overheating and it will cost too much to fix it, estimating over $800"--there suggestion was to just leave it because I should know when my car is really overheating. Since then both the gas gauge and temperature gauge will get stuck in extremely hot weather or erratically go around in circles like the hands on a clock. This is definitely a safety hazard and GM should really consider fixing it considering all the testimonies that are listed on the internet of people having the same issue. It is a manufacturing problem not the buyers.

- Hopewell, VA, USA

problem #19

Oct 152010

Sunfire 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles


Own a 2005 Sunfire and the instrument cluster is malfunctioning. The gas gauge has stopped working altogether and the temp and RPM gauge work erratically. This is definitely a recall issue and has nothing to do with the maintenance of the vehicle. GM wants me to have a dealer check the vehicle when they are well aware of this issue as there are multiple posting from owners of this issue online.

- Berwick , PA, USA

problem #18

Oct 012010


  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire. While driving at an unknown speed, the contact noticed that the instrument cluster and none of the gauges were working. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer nor a local mechanic to diagnose the failure. The failure had been ongoing for three months. The approximate failure mileage was 100,000 and the current mileage was unknown.

- Escondido, CA, USA

problem #17

Dec 072010


  • 35,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire. The contact stated that the all of the gauges on the instrument panel have failed and are misreading. The vehicle had not been inspected by a dealer, but when she called them they informed her that there would be a fee for diagnostic testing. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 35,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #16

Nov 052010

Sunfire 4-cyl

  • 135,000 miles
Odometer and speedometer malfunction and failure Pontiac Sunfire 2005.

- Brooklyn, MI, USA

problem #15

Feb 182008


  • 37,000 miles


Speedometer was not steady during acceleration or deceleration then it just stopped at 55 to 60 mph. Next time I drove the vehicle it did not work at all until the car got warm and all of my other gauges started having problems. My fuel gauge and temperature gauge went all the way around and just stopped and my RPM does not work at all. I took the vehicle to the dealership and they put it on the computer and said that it just needs to be reset and that I needed a new battery, after I got that fixed I took it home and 2 days later it started all over again. I took the vehicle back to the dealership and they said that it might be a gauge cluster they were not sure and that it would be $500. I could not afford it at the time so I decided not to get it fixed since they could not guarantee me that was the problem. My speedometer does work as long as it is warm outside. I looked online for any information on the problem and found out that it is not only my vehicle make, model or year that has the exact same problem and that there is now a class action suit against GM for the issue.

- Raymore, MO, USA

problem #14

Nov 272010

Sunfire 4-cyl

  • 103,000 miles
Purchase a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire in 2006. Vehicle was purchased as a program car. The speedometer started malfunctioning during the winter times when it was cold outside. After the car had warmed up the speedometer would, again, function as intended. This month, November 2010, the vehicle's fuel gauge, speedometer, and tachometer have all malfunctioned and are not correcting after the vehicle warms. The failures have not corrected and are still malfunctioning today, November 27,2010. GMC has class action settlement qualifies certain owners for a special coverage adjustment (special policy adjustment 07187A) to their standard warranty for allegedly defective speedometers. The common cause for all these issues is a faulty stepper motor (XC5.168). The motor was used throughout general motor's entire production line from 2003 to 2007. For those with a technical bent, this includes the gmt800, K20, GM360, and gmx380 platforms. Models effected include : * Buick Lesabre * Buick rendezvous * Chevy Avalanche * Chevy Silverado * Chevy Suburban * Chevy Tahoe * Chevy Impala * Chevy trailblazer * Chevy Monte Carlo * GMC Yukon * GMC Yukon XL * GMC Sierra * GMC Envoy * GMC denali * Cadillac escalade * Cadillac escalade esv * Cadillac escalade ext * Hummer H2 * Pontiac Sunfire on November 7, 2008, the U.S. district court in seattle granted final approval of a class action settlement for owners and lessees of certain 2003 to 2005 General Motors vehicles with allegedly defective speedometers. Those certain vehicles did not include all of the vehicles with this problem. Why not! those included include: Chevrolet Avalanche, Chevrolet Silverado, Chevrolet Suburban, Chevrolet Tahoe, GMC Yukon, GMC Yukon XL, GMC Sierra, Cadillac escalade, Cadillac escalade esv, Cadillac escalade ext. Something should be done to include all vehicles affected due to faulty manufacturing!

- Deville, LA, USA

problem #13

Mar 182010


  • 67,800 miles
My husband and I purchased a 2005 Pontiac Sunfire in 2006. It had 13,000 miles at that time and had been a really reliable car. My husband has changed the oil and filter on a regular schedule as well as the air filter. It still gets 33 mpg on the freeway and the mileage was about 68,000 when the instrument cluster started to go bad. If the gauges hadn't started to malfunction about 6-8 months ago I would have no complaints. The vehicle's temperature gauge started climbing off the charts one day when we were about forty miles from home. We we driving 65 mph. On the freeway when it started. We pulled off as soon as we could to check the motor and found that it was not overheated at all and we had no leaks in sight. I feel very blesses that no one was injured. With in a month the gauge eventually spun all the way around and started effecting the tachometer. Now the speedometer is not working properly because of the tachometer. If the cluster had been designed with a bumper pin to stop the gauges from making a complete 360 rotation, it might have not burned out so soon. Our temperature gauge has made about 3 or 4 revolutions so far making the other gauges even more inaccurate. The tachometer is on it's second trip around the gauge so we know the speedometer is not far behind. We are very disappointed with our choice at this time and are considering a different manufacture for our next vehicle. My father was a diesel mechanic for fifty years and he always instilled on me to buy american when it came to my cars. I always have and don't plan to change that but, I will do more research next time. This problem was posted on every web sight I found and has been happening for years. It's time to be more cautious.

- Stockton, CA, USA

problem #12

May 092010


  • 50,000 miles
2005 Pontiac Sunfire 2 door coupe; serious electrical failure...all dash components do not work and shops that we take car to try to fix problems with speedometer, tach, and temp gauges...not fixed; then ac goes off and on sometimes works/sometimes does not. Have spent over 2K in repairs, still not fixed and now the trunk latch has malfunctioned and has to be replaced. Car dies in extreme heat. Shops say electrical system malfunctions a lot on this model.

- Malakoff, TX, USA

problem #11

Jan 102009


  • 27,600 miles
2005 Pontiac Sunfire..instrument gauges erratic....temp gauge pegs all the way to RPM gauge and sometimes RPM gauge does not work.

- Debary, FL, USA

problem #10

Sep 202008


  • 40,000 miles
The gas gauge is having major problems especially when it is really hot or cold outside. The gas gauge will go the opposite direction into the speedometer. Now it is stuck on the dash and will not move. I also had problems with the speedometer getting stuck. It was telling me I was doing 100mph while I was stopped. This is extremely frustrating because I am not able to tell how much gas I have in my tank and how fast I am going. This item really needs to be recalled.

- Ocoee, FL, USA

problem #9

Dec 202009


  • 65,000 miles
2005 Pontiac Sunfire gas gauge & speedometer has finally stopped working, after many sporadic failures. Can't tell how fast car is going - can't judge when car may run out of gas. Driving in inclement weather makes this all the more dangerous. Had this happen on the 2003 model and had to replace full component. This is obviously a dangerous and ongoing defect in Sunfires and Pontiac needs to recall & correct. To continue to have this problem in models shows a total lack of safety concern on the auto makers part. Please investigate.

- Jamestown, OH, USA

problem #8

Jul 252009


  • 33,250 miles
Speedometer stops working during driving.

- Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #7

May 012009


  • 77,240 miles
The speedometer and tachometer failed on my 2005 Pontiac Sunfire while driving down I-4 in Florida. This causes a serve safety hazard not knowing how fast you are gong. From research done on the internet, this is an all to common problem with this vehicle. It seems to occur just after the vehicle comes out of warranty.

- Davenport, FL, USA

problem #6

Jan 022009


  • 59,650 miles
All dash gauges have ultimately failed. First, speedometer was erratic. Then tachometer failed. Now all dash gauges are inoperative. Requires full replacement of gauge module.

- Rockwall, TX, USA

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