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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
15 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
38,159 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2003 Hyundai Elantra seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2003 Hyundai Elantra Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #25

Jul 132016


  • miles


Replaced sensors because the check engine light came on, now the car won't pass inspection. The diagnostic tests won't read any malfunction and the airbag light won't go off

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #24

Feb 222016


  • 91,785 miles
I had to replace struts in front

- Athens, AL, USA

problem #23

Sep 092015


  • 151,000 miles
The contact owned a 2003 Hyundai Elantra. While driving 30 mph, the brake pedal was depressed and traveled to the floorboard. The brakes failed to respond and another vehicle crashed into the front passenger side of the contact's vehicle. The vehicle spun around several times. Only the passenger side curtain air bags deployed. The contact was taken from the accident by ambulance to a nearby hospital. The contact was treated for neck and lower back pain. A police report was filed. The vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 151,000.

- Scottdale , GA, USA

problem #22

Jun 062015


  • 65,000 miles


Driving at 45mpd air bag light activated. Went to my repair service Ram auto(ft. Pierce, fl. Tech tested with car diagnostic device. Could not find issue. Tried to delete code for air bag, light comes back on. Suggested I see if any recalls for this vehicle- no reports of air bag recalls for a Hyundai 2003 gls.

- Fort Pierce, FL, USA

problem #21

Jun 022014

Elantra 4-cyl

  • 57,465 miles
I had a low speed accident approximately 10-20mph in a parking lot where I hit a cement surrounding of a pole on the driver side and the airbag deployed on the passengers side causing significant damage to the windshield, busted the dash vents, locked my drivers seatbelt and shattered windshield glass all over the car.

- Stanardsville, VA, USA

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problem #20

Jul 012013


  • 105,000 miles
A few months back I began noticing that my check engine light came on. Would take 10- 15 mins to fill up gas tank. Sensor was triggered every few seconds, suggesting gas tank was full, but it was not. Took it to the dealer and was told there was nothing wrong with the car. With in the last month I have been noticing that rear automatic locking seat belt is not staying locked. Child car seats do not stay secured. Car occasionally stalls when started, and air bag light does not illuminate to determine if air bag will deploy or not.

- Peoria, AZ, USA

problem #19

Apr 142010

Elantra 4-cyl

  • miles


The vehicle was involved in a front end collision, totaling said vehicle, and the airbags did not deploy. Nothing was done to correct this failure as the vehicle was a total loss. However, Hyundai motors never came to inspect the car, despite being given ample notice. The vehicle has since been scraped.

- Ambridge, Pa 15003, PA, USA

problem #18

Apr 142010

Elantra 4-cyl

  • miles
2003 Hyundai Elantra. Consumer states vehicle was in an accident and airbags did not deploy the vehicle was totaled.

- Ambridge, PA, USA

problem #17

Jul 282007


  • 30,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Hyundai Elantra. The air bag light began to intermittently illuminate on the dashboard. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where an unknown cable within the one of the front seats was replaced under warranty. Approximately 2 years later the failure began to recur. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the contact was informed this was not a known failure and he would have to pay to have the vehicle repaired. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 30,000 and the current mileage was 50,000.

- Portsmouth, RI, USA

problem #16

May 012009


  • 34,486 miles
I had taken my car in for service in April 09 for oil change, tire balancing. I had to return it because car was veering to the left. When I picked it up the 2nd time the the airbag light came on and now stays on while driving. On 5/1/09 I took the car back to dealer and they said the cause is "ppd sensor open" which they want to charge me $390 to fix. Since the Elantra of 2001-2002 had the same issue with an airbag light this may be a defect in the 2003S as well.

- Bellflower, CA, USA

problem #15

Oct 202008

Elantra 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Hyundai Elantra. While driving 15 mph on normal road conditions, another vehicle crashed into the passenger side of the contact's vehicle. The air bags failed to deploy. There were no warning indicators illuminated on the instrument panel. The contact sustained moderate injuries. The vehicle was completely destroyed. The police and ambulance were called to the scene and a police report was filed. The vehicle was towed to a collision center. The failure and current mileages were 72,000. Updated 01/14/09. Updated 01/21/09

- Sumterville , FL, USA

problem #14

Dec 022008


  • 64,000 miles
My 2003 Hyundai Elantra has 64,000 miles on it & the airbag module went out & am told it will cost over $800 to fix & it won't deploy if I have an accident. I have Hyundai extended coverage plan of 10 years/100,000 miles & was told it covers 'everything but the sink' they tell me it won't cover this. This seems like a safety issue to me.

- Longview, WA, USA

problem #13

Mar 102007

Elantra 4-cyl

  • miles
The airbag light is on, I it replaced. I have no idea if it will work, if it will go off and kill someone driving the car. Please recall the cars and have Hyundai replace or repair this situation before more people are killed. Thanks

- Clifton, NJ, USA

problem #12

Aug 152006

Elantra 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Hyundai Elantra. On August 15, 2006, while driving 40 mph, the front end of the contact's vehicle crashed (T-boned) into the front end of another vehicle. The vehicle was destroyed. The air bags failed to deploy. The contact sustained chest pains from the steering wheel pressing into her chest. A police report was filed. The powertrain was unknown. The current and failure mileages were 150,000.

- Jacksonville, NC, USA

problem #11

Dec 172005

Elantra 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,450 miles
My vehicle, a 2003 Hyundai Elantra, was in an accident and the air bags failed to deploy. My vehicle right front bumper struck a Jeep Cherokee in the rear tearing the wheel completely off and most of the rear fender, at 40 mph.

- Molino, FL, USA

problem #10

Oct 042005

Elantra 4-cyl

  • 25,000 miles
The airbags in this car have failed to open even though this car has been involved in 3 collisions in which caused severe damage to the front of the car. The bumpers and front quarter panels had to be replaced in all three cases.

- Katy, TX, USA

problem #9

Jan 132005

Elantra 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
My husband was in an accident, where he rear ended a Dodge truck. The airbag didn't go off until the car had stopped. When the airbag went off, it went off to the side instead of full face. My husband broke his clavicle as a result of this failure. The car was a total loss per the insurance company. My car was a 2003 Hyundai Elantra.

- Anaheim, CA, USA

problem #8

Dec 012004

Elantra 4-cyl

  • miles
While driving consumer's vehicle rearended another vehicle. Upon slaming on the brakes gear automatically put itself into neutral, causing the steering to lock up. Also, the air bag did not deploy.

- Ocklawaha, FL, USA

problem #7

Sep 152004


  • 24,000 miles
Driver's front airbag light remains on while driving. Have not received recall notice as of 12/11/04. Abl.pco

- Aberdeen, WA, USA

problem #6

Oct 132004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 14,800 miles
Brakes failed, and consumer's vehicle rear ended another vehicle at 35 mph. Steering failed, and air bags did not deploy. Consumer was not notified of any recalls. Recall 03V496000 was issued.

- Cleveland, OH, USA

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