NHTSA closes General Motors investigation over difficult steering

Washington, D.C. – June 11, 2022 – The U.S. government’s auto safety regulator has closed an investigation into General Motors (NYSE:GM) over loss of power steering assist, which could increase steering effort and result in a crash. 

The investigation covered a total of 617,166 vehicles, including the following  

  • 2010-2012 Chevrolet Equinox
  • 2010-2012 GMC Terrain

Investigation summary  

The regulator, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), opened an investigation back in January 2020, following complaints regarding an intermittent lack of power steering support.

However, the lengthy investigation has found out that this would only happen on rare occasions and under unique circumstances. In effect, the vehicle needs to travel in a straight line for at least half an hour, with the driver not turning the steering wheel. Even then, the power steering will regain its function after a brief moment. 

With that in mind, and the fact there were no reported accidents or injuries caused by this issue, the regulator did not identify the issue as a “safety defect” and closed the inquiry.


A malfunctioning power steering makes maneuvering more difficult, especially at lower speeds. This increases the risk of a crash and injury.  

The repair

The factory power steering gear on these vehicles suffered from poor lubrication,  which made steering more difficult. General Motors previously addressed this issue in November 2014, as a part of its Special Coverage repair.  During it, dealers have replaced the power steering hardware on affected vehicles with updated components and reprogrammed the “steering gear control module.”

The remedy “appears to be sufficient” to resolve the safety issue, according to NHTSA.

Other General Motors recalls 

In April, the manufacturer recalled GMC Terrain and Chevrolet Equinox cars because of defective windshield wipers, as reported.

There was a GM SUV recall in August of last year because of the loss of power steering assist, as reported.

Could your vehicle be a part of a recall?

This investigation is closed, without any further action being required. However, if GM steering issues led to a recall, it would have affected more than 600,000 vehicles.

Your vehicle could still be part of a different recall. To do a Chevrolet or GMC recall check, use MotorSafety’s free vehicle lookup tool.

Bojan PopicNHTSA closes General Motors investigation over difficult steering