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Cadillac CTS Steering Problems

I bought this car in July of 2002, when it first came out. Since then I have brought it back to the dealership three times to have the steering fixed. The power actuater on the speed sensitive rack and pinon steering, the electronic module that judges the speed of the car with the relationship of more power steering or less keeps burning out. Every time that happens they have to replace the whole rack, because it is a part of the rack system. Has anybody out there have the same problem? :mad: :lemon:


  • I recently purchased a CTS and have had it in to dealer 4 times for vibration and shimmy of steering wheel between 40 - 50 mph. Dealer says it is the tires. They are putting 4 new tires on today. Has anyone else heard of or experienced this?
  • bagsbags Posts: 12
    I've had nothing but problems with my Goodyear tires on my 04 CTS. The tires were worn out at 10,000 miles on the outer edge. They replaced the tires and checked the allignment. Now the wheel shakes at 40-50 mph. Also, at 85 mph it REALLY shakes. I have no answers yet, but I'm going back in this week to talk with them.
  • No, I have not had the problem but was very interested since I just purchased a 2005 CTS and was wondering what type of problems anybody has had with the vehicle?
  • davej3davej3 Posts: 1
    I have an 03 that I have had to the dealer at least 5 times for a vibration that starts around 40-42 mph comes on again at about 70 mph. The dealer first said that it was a motor mount, then hes said it was a throttle body sticking,charged me $200.00. Then he said it was my tires, so I just bought a new set of Michelin's at a cost of $850.00. I still have the vibration. Please let me know if you find out what is going on, I can't afford to keep dumping money into this thing trying to find out what is causing the problem.
  • tmacguytmacguy Posts: 37
    I am so releaved to know that I am not alone. My '03 Lux Sport CTS had this very slight vibration at about 60-80 km/hr since as long as I can remember. the deealer said it was bad wheel alignment and thus not covered b y warranty. Then I replaced all 5 tires during the tire recall campaign, but the problem still persisted. The strange thing is that this only happened when the car is cold, but after the first 10 miles or so the vibration dissapears. So I have learned to ignore it.

    Now, however, and at 100,000 km (62,000 mi) the steering developed strange noises (knocks and rumbels) and the steering wheel creeks as I turn it arround (like an old dooe squeek). Finally, the steering firminess was gone all together. Now the dealer say the whole rack and middle shaft have to be replaces, along with some fittings and brackets. Basically, the entire steering system is shot (about $2000+ fix). And the car have been our of warranty since 4 months. I have stayed clear of American cars since they converted to front wheel drive. When buying the CTS I hated the fact that it had a rack system, I know they are troublesome.

    GM to the rescue. I called GM center in Dubai, and within 3 days i got approved for a good will warranty fix. For the record, I am impressed with GM Arabia's efforts, support, and promptness. They always come through.

    I have my share of problems with my CTS, but I was so fond on GM Arabia professinalism that I did buy an SRX a year later. And I am planning on trading in the CTS for STS within a year time.
  • bill86bill86 Posts: 7
    i have a 2006 CTS with 3.6 and 6-speed. I love the car for its handling, ride compact size and great gas mileage. I had a small crash at 2000 mi to the left front, which was repaired flawlessly by the dealer. Then at about 5000 mi it developed an annoying bucking in low and 2nd gears when accelerating at about half throttle- just the normal amount you use when pulling out into traffic. The first service mgr at the dealer put it onto the big computer, got no codes, so pronounced "there is no problem."
    This was annoying enough that I was going to lemon-law the car. Fortunately I took it back to the same dealer, had the other svc mgr who drove the car and agreed that it was a problem. Cadillac sent an engineer out, who discovered that when the air intake housing was replaced from the accident it was not properly secured. Thus, over 3000 mi it worked loose and air got in after the mas-airflow sensor, resulting in a too-lean condition, since the sensor did not know that more fuel was needed.
    The car now runs as it should and I am pleased, esp that Cad thought it important enough to send an engineer out to find the cause.
    I never suspected that the cause could be the repair since it ran fine for 3000 mi after.
  • I have a 2006 CTS that was at the dealers for steering wheel dancing & seat vibration at 351K. It has been back a total of 5 times, new tires front & back. Front left matched balanced. The problem is still there. The problem is worse when the car is cold and seems slightly better in long damp spells. GM wants me to go away. Has anyone come up with an answer as to what is causing this problem.
  • I bought this car in june 2005. I have brought it back 5+ times to have steering fixed. At first I was treated with great respect now I feel like I am a nuisance. The goodyear tires keep wearing on the outer edge.They have been replaced x 2 The wheel shimmies between 40 and 50 otherwise I still feel a vibration in the wheel. Also it seems to be worse when the car is cold. the dealership acts as if they have never heard of this problem before and it must be me. Now they have said it's the goodyear tires and @ first were going to charge me over $300 to replace 1 tire (throw one in for free)and alignment.After throwing a fit over having to pay for an ongoing problem they can't or won't fix they decided this series of tires are defective and replaced them with 4 michelin tires and alignment. I picked up the car and they assured me it was fixed with no more vibration. Guess what! I drove off the lot and the wheel shakes @ 40 more than ever. How do you deal with this. So back I go today and will be treated like a moron. Help! Anybody have an answer
  • jjctsjjcts Posts: 1
    I have 06 CTS 2.8. I had noise from the back at 40mph and up. It was a rear differential problem. I have noticed that lots of CTS have a same real differential problem. And dealers are trying to hide it. Just go to dealer and ask for replacing differential. I did mine this week.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    the GETRAG a short coming not only in the CTS but in the Pontiac Solstice as well....leaking seals..noisy, etc......GETRAG supplies more difs to other domestic auto makers as well as imports..but they just cant seem to get this one right.....been a long standing problem with CTS as far as I can research.....and now it carrys over into the Solstice.....GM needs to look at QC or changing suppliers on this on IMHO
  • I dissapointed to hear of the steering issues. I have an 02 Saturn L series which was plagued by the same vibraion issues at 65+mph. Never resolved even with mulitple balancing, shim kits, new tires. The new Aura has the same vibration issues at 60+ mph according to Saturn forum pages. Looked at going to a Buick LaCrosse (I believe) but others post of the same issues. Was looking forward to upgrading to tha CTS but may have to skip. Ive lived with this for 5 years and but never again.
  • steve140steve140 Posts: 1
    I know its been a while, but did you get your problem resolved? I have a 2005 cts that vibrates at 47mph and very bad at 85mph. Tires replaced and "force balanced", but still has the problem.
  • My 2005 has the exact same problem, dealship did and said the same things. Went back for the 3rd time last week and they said it was the brand new Bridgestone G009 I had put on a month and a half ago, even after explaining this happens with my snow tires as well. They are sticking to there guns and won't do anything further until the tire dealership does something about the ties after charging me 200$ because they "Can't find anything wrong". The very reputable tire dealership re-balanced with an on car balancer, which balances the tire while on the car at 200KM/hr and the vibration is still there. I see you posted in January, have you got it worked out yet? Sorry for rambling on, but this vibration is literally driving me nuts!
  • My only advice to those who are experiencing the steering dancing problem is to forget it. The dealer will always blame the tyres and you will have a hard time exhibiting the problem because it too faint of a shake and happens under specific and limited conditions.

    I lived with it till the whole steering system failed (see my previous posting). Now that lots of the steering assembly have been changed the problem is gone. Fixing my problem also included replacing engine mounts and tie links, it was a major repair.

    The only problem with my advice is that by the time the system is shot (and it will) you will be out of warranty (as was in my case). In my case I contacted GM customer service and they granted my a good will waranty, the entire repare was for free :)
  • Find a different tire dealer who throws these on the car balancers in the junk heap where they belong and uses a good stationary spin balancer with a mechanic who knows how to use it. I used a tire dealer for a while who used one of those on the car balancers.. nothing ever worked well. My current dealer uses the old standby, knows how to use it and it works perfectly. I have never had an out of balance tire... on my CTS (Goodyear F1's and the Firestone Blizzak snows) or on my wifes saturn.. which had constant balance problems before I brought the car to my current tire dealer.
  • I have had my CTS since 2004, the first year it had a shimmy at 55mph plus. The problem was NOT my tires. The dealer recommended a front AND a rear end alignment which I had done. It has driven like a dream ever since.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 61,425
    yes, excessive negative caster can cause shimmy. A negative caster angle is when the lower ball joint is behind the upper.

    If the caster is unequal on either front wheel, you will get wander or pull toward the side with the more negative caster.

    You may have experienced this with shimmying supermarket carts. That's what causes that, negative caster.

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  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    agree...and use a hunter road force balancer....but the key is a mechanic who knows how to properly use the machine..and balance a tire correctly
  • rjd4rjd4 Posts: 1
    From what I see with most CTS's is that people never rotate tires at the 5000 mile interval. Another good thing to do would be to have your local repair shop to set the toe on the alignment to 0 degrees for front and rear
  • I just recently bought a 2003 CTS and the car sometimes moves side to side on the road. Does anybody know what is causing this? Would it be the sway bars, or steering?
  • aaronvaaronv Posts: 2
    I just bought an 08 CTS4 (which I absolutely love) but when you turn the steering wheel either left or right it makes a clicking sound and you can actually feel it in the gas pedal (not too sure about the brake.. never use it :) ) . I brought it into the dealer and they ordered parts but said this is a first they have ever seen an issue like this in a 08 CTS. Anyone else out there have/had this problem?
  • I've been seeing reports of issues here similar to the one I have with my CTS. There is a vibration coming through that is not from the road or the tires since on occasion the same road will feel smoother. I have a lowered stiffer WRX that drives more comfortably on black straight roads. Additionally I have a slight drift to the right more than I believe it should, which causes me to pull left and lose the benefit of a dead spot, which in turn means more work on long trips.

    The dealer blamed tire pressure last time and I had the tires that were not OEM (bought car used) were replaced by another shop I trust. I've had the alignment and balancing done by the same shop I trust, but the issues still seem to be there. The shop acknowledges the issue, but the dealer is another matter since they like to blame the user/weather/road/anything else. I have an extended warranty, but it is useless until someone figures out the cause.

    The silver lining here seems to be that others with these issues have had them fixed by the replacement of the rack. I hate going back to the Cadillac dealer because they always assault me with unwanted and superfluous services, and other places may not quite know the Cadillac as well as the dealer techs... so it's a rock and a hard place for me until I get them to find the problem.
  • I have been trying to figure out this issue my '08 CTS4 for two years now. It has been continually getting worse. Took it to the dealer 3 times now with no success. I removed and greased the intermediate steering shaft which had no effect. Can't seem to understand why its felt in the gas pedal. Have you had any luck fixing this yet?
  • After a couple of times taking it to a dealer, they finally replaced the whole steering column which fixed the problem for a couple of months; but the problem is back again. I am going to try another dealer this week to see what they say, it is apparently a bearing in the bottom of the column that is worn. I am also going to call Cadillac to see if they've had any other issues like this as I've read a couple others with the exact problem.
  • I turned in the lease on my 2008 CTS4/Premium Package and purchased the same car, but a 2010 model year. I have noticed that the car seems to "weave" when driving. It feels like I am driving on a windy day but the wind is coming from both sides. The weaving isn't violent, but enough where it's not acceptable to me in a new car, particularly a Cadillac. I have taken it to the dealer once and the tech found the same issue during a test drive. He adjusted the "toe" and the tire air pressure but the problem still exists.

    Three questions:
    1) Has anyone else experienced this same problem?
    2) Any advice on how to work with GM on this assuming the Tech cannot solve the problem?
    3) Any advice on working the lemon law rules under a worse case scenario?

  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,252
    Hello Rspruitt,
    Did you call the dealership and let them know the concern is still present? If the technician cannot figure out the problem please let me know. I will open a case and have an agent look at your situation further. Thank you,
    Mariah GM Customer Service
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 61,425
    Control Arm Bushings

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  • Thanks Mariah- Yes, I was back to the dealership (Wiers- Demotte, IN) last week and they were unable to resolve the problem. I even took another vehicle on the lot for a test drive (same make/model) and could not duplicate the problem. I would like to proceed to the next step as you suggest and have an agent look at the case. Please advise, thanks.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,252
    Hello Rspruitt,
    That is not a problem. What I will need from you is to have you e-mail me the following: contact information, VIN, current mileage, dealership and best time to contact you. I just want you to know the agent will probably have you take the vehicle in to have it diagnosed. You can get my e-mail by clicking on gmcustsvc. Thank you,
    Mariah GM Customer Service
  • Like others here, I have a 2010 CTS with steering vibration. Local dealer forced balanced but this has not resolved the issue. I have never driven a car that has this issue in the last 25 years of driving. What is worse, is the local service manager and dealership employees are not interested in resolving it. In fact, not only did this not fix the issue, someone scrapped my new leather steering wheel and also damaged the dash covering when completing a required glove box recall! I am utterly disappointed that my 3 week old car has had this happen.

    I have never experienced this type of attitude from any GM dealer. The service manager sent me a letter making sure I checked the boxes "Completely satisfied" or call me. I called him and never heard back. I just moved to Chicago and just chaulk it up to this area's customer service culture - which is very lacking.
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