really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
33,400 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. replace engine (1 reports)
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2012 Chevrolet Malibu:

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

Get free help with your lemon!
close ad
problem #1

Nov 192017


  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,382 miles

click to see larger images

engine knocking

Just the Facts on the car issue, then the Customer service compliant:

Stop at light, knocking noise starts. Thought it was the heat and shut it off. Then hesitation at next light. A mile later, check engine light turns on. Take it home to have my nephew check the car out. He is a tech at a Chevy Dealer, not close to my home. Otherwise, I would have taken it there. Codes checked, P00011 & P00013 - Take to Dealership #1 (with codes from my nephew) and had previous engine work done under warranty and other work - Plus, I bought it there. Service person reported - foreign debris on the screen of the Cam Position Actuators She also reported - either the filter broke, or someone where I had the oil changed (Valvoline) put a rag or bottle cape in my engine and I needed a new one. She continued to advise me to take the car to Valvoline.

After persistent questioning, she suggests an engine flush but no guarantee. Refused Flush - Paid $133. for "diagnostic" Took to Valvoline - They spoke to tech at Dealership #1 who said filter intact but tilted - They viewed the filter, said it was fine but showed me the metallic sparkles in it. They mentioned it was tilted. - They took pictures and they have a video where they said a rag or bottle cap was not near the engine. I have not view this tape. Called GM - Made a compliant against Dealer - They escalate and someone calls back. GM Rep - Take to dealership - Anyone of my choice. Took to another - Do not trust the original. GM Dealership #2 - Said filter had metal parts in it - They said it was crushed - Asked to drop Pain - quoted $350. Dealer #2 - Drops pan and says the following in an email and sent pictures: THE FOLLOWING PICTURES SHOW THE VEHICLES OIL PAN REMOVED AND FOREIGN DEBRIS IN THE BOTTOM. TECHNICIAN BELIEVES THE PLASTIC FROM THE TIMING CHAIN GUIDES AND VISIBLE METAL IN THE OIL ITSELF. They continue to advise me that I need an Engine. Rebuilt is approx: $6000, and $7500. Advise I will call GM back - We are now at the point where I don't know what is going happen.

Now the Customer Service Compliant: The lack of concern and customer service is the worst that I have experienced. My car has 33K miles and as I understand, their warranty is up at 5 years, I just missed it by 2 months. I bought the car at just under 5K and I do not have it 5 years, so, in essence, the way I see it, I paid for a fairly new car and got to drive it 28k miles before needing an engine.

There have been 2 issues with this engine before. The one incident, 6 months prior to the current issue: I stalled approaching a highway. Was never reimbursed for towing ($110) from OnSTAR (which is another story and a complete disaster of customer service) and lost of money since I was on my way to my second job.

There was another issue 8 months prior to that which was under warranty but each time was never offered a loaner. Had to borrow a car, mind you, I was there in between these times for 4 new brakes at $980, which they offered a rental....so, it cost $1000. Plus some recalls which to me equals time spend and lost wages.

This is why a bought a new car, because my old one was too costly and now I am back to where I started. Thanks Chevy!!!!!

The rest of my compliant is that:

The lack of care, concern or understanding of the issue. I use my car to make visits for my job, so it has been difficult to keep borrowing a car. Unfortunately, I can not afford a rental for 4 weeks as of today..

The lack of professionalism by the Service Person at Dealership # when I mentioned that this was the 3rd time with this engine and would never buy a Chevy again, her answer was " it's a machine, it breaks" and offered a rental car since I mentioned that I didn't know it would take 2 days or more and have to work. I told her I wouldn't pay for the rental since it isn't worth the time and money. Her next comment was " it is better to rent a car than to lose a days pay" .

These are the answers you get instead of offering a loaner since I was there 2 times without a car and it was covered under warranty and the time when I had my brakes serviced and paid 1K after all was said and done. It would have been a nice on their part to try to keep customers.

After receiving the call that the oil service company is to blame for needing a new engine. I went to get the car, paid the fee and the service person says "I hope that Valvoline does the right thing". So, she just drops the ball instead of trying to help.

The stress this has created is at it's highest as I have had days of confusion due to trying to get to work appointments and finding time for the logistics for all of this. I have had to turn work down because I do not have a vehicle at the time of the work. I don't know what to do first at times because life has become overwhelming with other issues as well. So, this just compounds daily life in a very negative way.

I have lost total trust in Chevrolet, GM and their Dealerships. I will never ever buy from them again. This was my 3rd Chevy and I bought it because of my other 2 were great. Time to change vehicle companies.

I will make sure to tell (in person or online) my story to anyone that is considering buying a GM Product as their parts are not made well, or you can say, they are made well if you only want to drive your car for just over 33K miles.

Update from Dec 20, 2017: Update: Was advised that I need to tear down the engine (GM said this before but dealer wanted to look at the pan first) quoted $848. and no guarantee that GM would pay for part of the tear down or for the solution. So, it is I would have to pay $350 + $848 then the amount of the repair and nothing in writing. Just that they "might pay" but "may not".

Going to have it towed to another shop since I received a quote for way less for a new engine, if that is what it needs. Who knows, maybe it can be saved but the worst case scenario is still less expensive than $7500 for a new engine plus the oil pan drop of $350 + $848. for the tear down which would equal to $8700.

Never, Ever will I buy a GM Product. Wasted my time and money.

The stress is almost unbearable with trying to go on with daily life, work, home, Family ...etc....

Will give updates when time permits.

Update from Mar 10, 2018: Correction to above quote of Dealer#2 Engine cost of $7700.00.

Towed my car to independent BBB / AAA Certified Garage because the quote was lower, plus no charge for "Tear Down" services as requested by GM and then the dealer, after they charged $381. including tax to drop the oil pan and to kill my battery of energy.

Neither the Dealers, Bellavia, East Rutherford, NJ, Schumacher, Clifton, NJ or GM tried to help. This is the same for GM.

The car needed a new engine and paid for one. It drives 100% better than ever before. I used to have a delay when pressing the gas before the car would move after a complete stop. I thought it was because it was a 4 cylinder engine. I have never had one before. This new engine has not done this once in 6 weeks.

Complained to BBB and GM asked for all my paper work to be fax. What a waste of time again for me. They came back to BBB and said that I didn't bring it to a Certified Dealer and they do not represent the garage I finally took it to. Which, I know this but needed to get my car fix. I took it to 2 dealers, the first one didn't offer a "tear down" or any services to replace the engine. Just to take it to Valvoline and to also take it to my nephew since he gave me the codes that I gave to them before bringing in the car for service. The 2nd dealer took a week to drop the oil pan for $381 and another week to advise that they needed to "tear down" the engine. They didn't even make sure that my car's battery was charged. They put it in the lot only an hour before I arrived and gave it back to me with a dead battery. When I called to say I was going to pick up the car and have it towed, they said it was still on the lift, then called me back and said it was ready and in the lot. The tow truck driver charged it in their lot...disgraceful. They jerked me around long enough and it was just another fee after the other and at that point, they weren't sure if GM would contribute or not, they might but nothing in writing. I couldn't afford all of the fees, oil pan drop, tear down, new engine. Had they worked with me, they would have not lost the sale, instead, someone else made the money and they have an unhappy customer and perhaps more when they hear my story.

GM also mentioned to BBB that this would have been covered under Bumper to Bumper which is 3 years and long past this time. When speaking with GM from the beginning, the rep mentioned POWERTRAIN WARRANTY over and over. They say they record our conversations and advised them to queue up the recordings for proof.

GM has a 6 year Certified Used Car Powertrain Warranty on their website. My car at the time the engine broke was under six years. It includes cars from 2012 to 2017 and that they "Believe in our vehicles and aren't afraid to stand behind them"..yeah, they stand behind them and watch you drive away with their problematic, dysfunctional engines. I questioned this and the rep on the phone could only answer, "excuse me"? and then it was that the garage I took it to was not a certified GM dealer. Again, it is the customer that is at fault, not them from the get go when I was sold a piece of crap. Why did I go elsewhere? Price, Service, reliability, workmanship, friendliness, knowledgeable and helpful. They don't even care that their dealerships could care less about customers. Surprised that they didn't care about keeping the sale because all they care about is money, not people. Not the people who bailed them out with tax dollars and then buy their products or the people that have been long standing customers. Just Money.

How could they NOT offer this Warranty to me if they cover other 2012 cars? Why is my 2012 different? Money.

I will continue to tell my story, in person and online as well as a sign on my car. Bellavia thinks they can put their name on my car and get free advertising? They will get advertising and people can read the sentence after their name which states " is where I purchased this car and needed a new engine after 33k Miles, never again GM"

I refused their response through BBB and gave the reasons above in detail. I am still waiting for an answer from GM and until then and most likely after, since I do not trust they will "stand behind" anything they sell, I will continue to tell my story.

- Gina M., Rutherford, US