really awful
Crashes / Fires:
25 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
70,912 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2004 Chevrolet Malibu:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #192

Nov 112009


  • 97,500 miles
I was driving myself and my 2 year old son home when I lost my power steering and had to stop, I shut off the car and waited ten minutes turned it back on and it started working again. I brought the car to my mechanic and had to have the entire steering column and everything replaced. The day after I picked up my car it was making an awful noise so I had to bring it back and am having another part of the steering replaced.

- Sheffield, MA, USA

problem #191

Oct 142007


  • miles
I purchased my 04 Malibu in 11/06-had the vehicle for 3 days and heard a thumping in the steering column. Called the dealership, took in and they replaced the drive shaft ( a common problem with this year Malibu I have been told). The problem has come back to haunt along with having issues with the power steering, I lost my power steering and almost got into an accident. I can not believe that this car has not been recalled for this problem.

- Buffalo, NY, USA

problem #190

Oct 252009


  • 82,150 miles
The power steering on my 2004 Malibu ls failed while making a turn. I nearly had an accident. My local garage diagnosed the problem as a module in the steeringcolumn and said it's a fairly common problem. This is extremely dangerous and should be considered for a recall or manufactures service bulletin.

- Woodbridge, VA, USA

problem #189

Aug 212009


  • 54,000 miles
The intermediate shaft on this vehicle (steering) locked up making the car unsteerable thus causing an accident. It is unpredictable when the intermediate shaft locks up. Prior to the accident the vehicle experienced shaking at highway speeds and premature tire ware. Part was replaced 2 years ago through warranty but failed again. According to the dealership this is a common problem with most GM vehicles however no recall has been issued. This part will be replaced again and old part will be available upon request.

- New Bedford, MA, USA

problem #188

Sep 292009


  • 78,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. When the contact turned the steering wheel in any direction, he noticed a grinding noise in the intermediate steering shaft. The contact also noticed that the grinding noise occurred each time he drove over a bump or pot hole. The vehicle has not been diagnosed by the dealer and there were no prior warnings. The current and failure mileages were 78000.

- Lowell, OH, USA

problem #187

Oct 052009


  • 66,204 miles
I took vehicle into Goodyear for oil change and told them more steering noises are happening.

- Sterling, VA, USA

problem #186

Apr 302009


  • 64,336 miles
2004 Chevy Malibu. Numerous dealership visits on 'noisy' steering. After warranty Goodyear found $610 intermediated steering shaft problem. Noisy again in steering : steering column went out! another $900 bill. I want reimbursed and a recall on this problem.

- Sterling, VA, USA

problem #185

Sep 292009


  • 106,000 miles
The power steering failed while driving my 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. A "mechanical problem indicator appeared on the dash board when driving my car and the words "power steering" were displayed on the radio display. A few moments later, my power steering failed and the car became very difficult to drive. I turned around and went home.

- Clayton, NC, USA

problem #184

Sep 092009


  • 23,000 miles
I own a 2004; 4 cyl; Chevy Malibu with electronic power steering. The system failed while I was on the interstate. I narrowly escaped causing a collision because of this failure. When towed to Chevy "... their computer shows no problem...". baloney, I have since found out by going on-line that lots of Chevy Malibu have this problem. Chevy will not own up to it because it is a major expensive repair.

- St. Augustine, FL, USA

problem #183

Jun 012009


  • 55,000 miles
Power steering assist fails - causes a msg to appear on info center and steering is difficult while driving at any speed.

- Lavale, MD, USA

problem #182

Sep 042009


  • 116,000 miles
I purchased a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu in June 2009. Since I have had the car the power steering light has come on and I have lost all power steering in the vehicle twice. I took the car the dealerships shop and they told me they could not find anything wrong with the power steering. Driving today I lost all power steering again. I stop the vehicle and turn it off and it resets itself usually, but today it kept going out. I spoke to a Chevrolet dealership and they are very familiar with the problem although there has been no recall. It is very dangerous and needs to be looked into seriously. I am locked into my loan for 3 years on this car.

- Akron, OH, USA

problem #181

Sep 022009


  • 92,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. The contact stated that while driving approximately 10 mph the "power steering" warning light illuminated on the instrument panel, then the power steering failed. As a consequence the risk for vehicle crash was increased. The vehicle was towed to a local repair facility, and a mechanic concluded that the steering shaft needed replacement. As of current date the vehicle has not been repaired. The failure and current mileages were 92,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Auburn, ME, USA

problem #180

Aug 102009


  • 34,100 miles
Driving the 2004 Chevy Malibu in a parking lot when power steering turned off. Power steering will reset after restarting the car but will subsequently turn off again. Looses power steering more frequently since the initial loss of power steering.

- Mililani, HI, USA

problem #179

Aug 052009


  • 115,006 miles
Electric power steering goes of suddenly w/O advance notice of any kind.

- Manassa, CO, USA

problem #178

Aug 032009


  • 84,900 miles
I own a 2004 Chevy Malibu and the electronic power steering quit. The wrench light came on and the display said power steering. It has happened several times. The last time it happened was right after I had picked my son up from day care. I was on my home and the power steering went out. I could barely steer the car. I had to pull hard on the steering wheel to get the car to steer. It started working again on my way to work, but now it over steers to the right. If the power steering had come back on while I was pulling on the steering wheel I would have went into the other lane and caused and accident (with my son in the car). I took it to the Chevy dealer and they said the steering column was already replaced due to a recall. The dealer said they could replace the steering column at my expense. If the steering column was already replaced, then why is the same problem still happening. I will not pay to have a new one put in when it only temporarily fixes the problem. I have read many complaints on this same issue. Some have caused accidents. I will not drive the car with my son in the car. I cannot believe that GM does not admit that there is a problem. What will it take for GM to correct the problem a "death".

- Bay City, MI, USA

problem #177

Jul 302009


  • 70,520 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. While driving approximately 40 mph at night, the power steering failed unexpectedly. The driver had to exert greater effort to turn the steering wheel. The vehicle has not been repaired and is currently not being driven. The failure and current mileages were 70,520.

- Salem, OH, USA

problem #176

Oct 172006


  • 22,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. While attempting to make a right turn, the power steering failed and caused the vehicle to drive onto the sidewalk. The vehicle has not been diagnosed by the dealer. The current mileage was 55,000 and failure mileage was 22,000.

- Burnszille, MN, USA

problem #175

May 132008


  • miles
I reported this to NHTSA and no contact from anyone. I own a 2004 Chevy Malibu. I have spent over $2400 to have this repaired. Failure of power steering indicator and a loss of power steering while driving this vehicle. I have had to paid to have 2 new GM steering columns installed in the last year and half. Have had the sensor adjusted on the new steering column. And I still continue to have this problem. I have written to GM with a less than acceptable reply. There is a serious matter and it appear nothing is being done. Are you waiting for someone to get hurt. Please look into this matter. GM sure is refusing. Unfortunately I do not have records from the beginning of the vehicles history for I am 2nd owner however, because I have already installed 2 new columns I can assure you that this has been going on for sometime.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #174

Jul 112006


  • 56,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu. In July of 2006, the steering column was replaced at only 15,000 miles. Recently, the contact felt the steering loosen while driving 20 mph. On July 21, 2009, the steering knuckle failed and she lost control of the steering. She had to place the gear into park in order to stop the vehicle. A report was filed with the manufacturer. The current and failure mileages were 56,000.

- Rochester , NY, USA

problem #173

Jul 162009


  • 20,000 miles
This car is terrible. Not only did my brakes not work which made my car crash through the front of my house the steering has been replaced twice and the problem still exists. The electrical system has major problems. The blinker burned a hole through the lens cover and makes the horn, doors and lights not work. I have contacted GM several times over the last 5 years and they don't care because the warranty is out. Then you read how many people have the same problems. They got their bailout how about a bailout for the people who bought GM products. There seems to be no help for the consumer.

- Irving, TX, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »