6.3

fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
11,565 miles

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problem #38

May 252005

Astro Van 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,000 miles
The torsion bar snapped in half. This bar was inadequate to the vehicle, and GM has a modified version for this. The bar broke while the consumer was driving the vehicle. The consumer was going 10 mph, when this happened and this caused the left front to drop down about 8 to 10 inches and was a violent drop. There were no problems before this. There were no wrecks involved. The consumer had to take in to the midas dealer and have the torsion bars on the left and right replaced with the new modified version. The front shock also broke, as a result of the bar breaking. The total of fixing this was $1,000 at the consumer's expense.

- Girard, OH, USA

problem #37

Aug 042004

Astro Van 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,222 miles
Part#15990701 failed, broke.causing left corner of vechicleto droop almost to interfering with left front wheel.this part is comminly known as a torsion bar and should not be failing/.there was no accident.this vech.is in excellent condition and has never been abused.reparing this is going to be costly;over $1000 dollars.because their are no original parts.the parts have been updated and all new parts for both sides of the vech. Must be used.this tells me their was bad engineering in the original design. Now that they've fixed the problem they want the customer to pay the bill. Thank you. Respectfully richard wagner.

- Odessa, MO, USA

problem #36

Jul 292002

Astro Van 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles
My wife went to move our 1996 Chevrolet Astro van and when she backed up the right front tire was rubbing on the wheel well. Upon further investigation it was determined that one of the torsion bars broke. When I called my local dealer I found the parts were readily available but I would have to replace both sides because they had been "updated". the parts alone were over $500. When I removed the old torsion bars I found out what had caused it to break, the receiver tube that the end of the bar went into had filled with dirt and road crude causing the bar to rust and eventully break. This occured four days before we were leaving on a 2500 mile trip. If this had occured when we were going down the interstate at 75mph or in the mountains while on vacation it could have been diasaterous. My last complaint is that I was required to replace both torsion bars because the new one would not match the old. You should not have to replace something that is not broken and if they do require you to do so the manufacturer is admitting there is a problem with the old design. I checked in your records and found that the Astro and safari vans built from 1992-1996 had almost 200 cases of these torsion bars breaking and a complaint being filed. Who knows how many other ones have broken and gone unreported.the 1997 models did not seem to have a problem because they came out with the updated parts.

- Castana, IA, USA

problem #35

Aug 192003

Astro Van 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 127,261 miles
Fracture of right side torsion bar caused body to drop onto wheel, immobilizing vehicle. Repairs cost $797.12 plus $40 towing and loss of use for three days.

- Boston, MA, USA

problem #34

Aug 022003

Astro Van 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Driver's side torsion bar broke. I've seen numerous complaints of this same failure on various web sites. Fortunately, my torsion bar broke while backing out of our driveway. This could have been a catastrophic failure had it occured while driving on the freeway.

- Depew, NY, USA

problem #33

May 122003

Astro Van

  • miles
While driving, the torsion bar broke (which was the second time the incident happened) dealer and manufacturer were notified.

- Medford, WI, USA

problem #32

Apr 122003

Astro Van

  • miles
The torsion bar snapped without warning.

- Taberg, NY, USA

problem #31

Jan 282003

Astro Van 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Vehicle was backing out of driveway, when a loud noise proceeded the front driver side of the van collapsing onto the front tire. The Chevrolet dealer informed me that the torsion bar had failed, and as the part had been redesigned, the passenger side would also be replaced. I requested the parts be returned, and after visually inspecting, it is very apparent that the part failed due to severe rust and corrosion. The original installation of the torsion bar has a retaining sleeve that fits over the failed end of the torsion bar, and connects into the crossmember. The sleeve is designed in such a way that it collects moisture. This in turn causes approximately 6 inches of the torsion bar to corrode, degrading the integrity of the unit. With over 25 years of experience as a mechanic in the aviation field, I am very familiar with corrosion and metal fatique. The new design of the replacement parts, eliminates the sleeve entirely, and there is no moisture collection points. Chevrolet is aware there is a problem, but as long as the consumer is paying the bill, why publicly admit it? with the repair cost and aggravation set aside, the real issue related to this failure is safety. My family had been on the highway just a few minutes before the torsion bar failed. When the front end collapses, the steering capability of the vehicle is close to non existant. This is a safety issue!!! the safety aspect affects the passengers in the vehicle, other motorists, and pedestrians. I also noticed from the numerous complaints on this web site, that several of the failures occurred while the vehicle was parked. This is even a safety issue to anyone around the vehicle, including children and mechanics who might be near or under the vehicle when the failures occur. In my opinion, Chevrolet has no intention of initiating a recall on their own. Unfortunately, with the number of failures occuring on vehicles that are only a few years old, the majority of failures are yet to come.

- Westminster, CO, USA

problem #30

Sep 272002

Astro Van

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The owner made an attempt to step into the van when the torsion bar snapped. This caused the van to collapse in the front, to the ground with no warning. Nlm

- Dubuque, IA, USA

problem #29

Sep 052002

(reported on)

Astro Van

  • miles
Consumer was in the garage, when there was a loud noise. The left front end had collasped. The vehicle was towed to a local garage, and they said that the torsion had broken.

- Kenmore, NY, USA

problem #28

Jul 202002

Astro Van 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles
While driving the consumer heard a popping noise. When the vehicle was pulled over, and the front end dropped a few inches. Dealer determined that torsion bar had broken. The consumer stated that this wasn't the first time this problem happened, in re: 1988 Astro van. Scc

- Marcellas, NY, USA

problem #27

Aug 152002

Astro Van

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving 25-30 mph driver's front side of vehicle dropped onto wheel well vehicle was towed to dealer, front torsion bar had broken.

- Groveland, MA, USA

problem #26

Jul 202002

Astro Van 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving at 65mph on the highway and going over an overpass 2 torison bars broke causing the front end to fall which almost resulted in an accident.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #25

Jul 052002

Astro Van 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Consumer states after the torson bar failed, the front tire rubbed against frame of vehicle.

- Albany, MN, USA

problem #24

Jul 052002

Astro Van 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While the vehicle was parked the right and left side torsion bars broke within the retainer and caused the vehicle to drop. Dealer has been notified at this time.

- Albany, MN, USA

problem #23

Jun 081999

Astro Van 4WD

  • miles
The left torsion bar on the front suspension failed while the van was sitting in the driveway. Champion Chevrolet in howell, mi said this is common. They also intsructed me to replace the right torsion bar because it could fail at any time. My complaint is Chevrolet is suggesting (which I did) replace an original part that is not broken. GM had an updated part# because they new this is a common failure. I think if a dealer is suggesting you replace a part that is not broken and says it is for your safety, then that should be a warranty item replacement.

- Howell, MI, USA

problem #22

May 232002

Astro Van 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While vehicle was parked and had gotten out of the front end and fell to the ground due to the torsion bar breaking. Dealer contacted.

- Seperance, NY, USA

problem #21

Apr 212002

Astro Van 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Front torsion bar snapped while consumer was pulling out of parking lot. Contacted dealer.

- Clifton Park, NY, USA

problem #20

Nov 142001

Astro Van 4WD

  • miles
Left front torsion bar failed and vehicle's front end dropped approximately 6 inches. I was told that there was a design change that required both left and front torsion bars to be replaced. Additionally, when the van collapsed, an engine oil line was damaged. Total cost: $891.47. Design change indicates that engineering was aware of the problem and designed a more robust torsion bar. This is a critical safety issue, and yet I was told that the vehicle is out of warranty. It is not reasonable to expect this type of failure, no matter how old the vehicle. One would not reasonably expect the frame of a 10 year old vehicle to collapse. Likewise, one would not expect failure of torsion bars that support the vehicle. I was lucky that the vehicle was parked when the incident happened. If moving, total loss of control would have been the result.

- Shorewood, IL, USA

problem #19

Oct 022001

Astro Van 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Torsion bar broke and front suspension dropped about 5 inches while driving vehicle. Contacted dealer, and dealer stated there was no recall. Dealer told consumer to call NHTSA.

- Prior Lake, MN, USA

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