Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The 2011 Sonata has a seriously defective engine that seizes without warning. It was awarded the dubious honor of being the first CarTalk / CarComplaints Turd of the Week in late September 2015.

A class action lawsuit was filed in May 2015 against Hyundai that claims the 2.4L Sonata engine is defective. More info here.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
16 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
16 / 2
Average Mileage:
115,227 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.

2011 Hyundai Sonata seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2011 Hyundai Sonata Owner Comments (Page 6 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #21

Mar 022015


  • 98,600 miles


Front passenger weight classification sensor failure. Dealership says the only why to fix it is to replace seat for $1800. Dealership cannot tell me if SRS will work when needed. After doing so research online this looks like a big problem with hyundal cars throughout many model years. Hyundai has failed to remit this problem and is selling vehicles to the public with faulty air bag systems.

- Hanford , CA, USA

problem #20

Jul 232014


  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. While driving at 25 mph, the air bag warning light illuminated. In addition, the contact stated that the horn functioned intermittently. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 60,000.

- Columbus, OH, USA

problem #19

Apr 192015

Sonata 4-cyl

  • 112,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that the air bag light intermittently illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 112,000. Updated 6/8/15 the consumer also stated a month after getting an oil change, the oil was low and she had to add more oil. Updated 06/11/15

- Winston-Salem, NC, USA

problem #18

Jan 292014

Sonata 4-cyl

  • 3,000 miles


Sensors cause air system light to illuminate. System needs to be reset at dealership to clear. Technician said airbag won't deploy while this fault occurs. I have had this issue 4or 5 times. When I google Hyundai Sonata airbag issues I see many similar experiences with other people. This could be a potential safety hazard. I was told it was caused by a seat sensor. Yet under warranty they did not replace. No car is out of warranty.

- Belford, NJ, USA

problem #17

Feb 022015


  • miles
2011 Hyundai Sonata was on 2nd recall for transmission. The air bag light came on and would not turn off...updated 02/12/15

- West Covina, CA, USA

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problem #16

Nov 232012


  • miles
I have had so much warranty work done to this car, that I will never buy Hyundai again! I would estimate around $10,000 worth or warranty and recall work has been done, not including the other issues that are not under warranty. My airbag pressure is too high so the light is on, on my dash. It's a $300 job and then there is some sensor for the gas that causes the check engine light to stay on. That's another $200 to get fixed. Also the motor in my driver side window is going out. Seems like there's just one problem after another. I'll never will buy Hyundai again and can't wait until I can afford to trade this Sonata in.

- Midland, TX, USA

problem #15

Dec 152014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that while driving 45 mph, another vehicle crashed into the rear of the contact's vehicle. As a result, the contact crashed into another vehicle and the seat belt became unlatched. The air bags also failed to deploy. The contact sustained neck, back and shoulder injuries that required medical attention. A police report was filed. The vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 112,000. The VIN was not available. Updated 3/13/15 updated 03/26/15

- Tickfaw, LA, USA

problem #14

Dec 142014

Sonata 4-cyl

  • 127,839 miles
Airbag sensor has been illuminated stating that there is an error with the airbags. Concerned that airbag wont function in case of an accident.

- La Puente, CA, USA

problem #13

Dec 052014


  • 147,000 miles
This vehicle has a manufactured defect and has been rejected by a state certified state inspector. It was failed due to the air bag light continued to show on the dash board. The state inspector indicated that this vehicle would not pass inspection until the air bag situation has been resolved. I am not concerned if other Hyundai vehicles are recalled or not. My primary concern at this present time is my 2011 Hyundai Sonata limited is taken care of in accordance with the requirements of the national traffic and motor vehicle Safety Act. I have asked Hyundai to repair this vehicle. However, I was told that the warranty has run out on this vehicle. I indicated that this is a manufactured defect and should resolved immediately.

- Petersburg, VA, USA

problem #12

Sep 042014

Sonata 4-cyl

  • 55,000 miles
I was rear ended while at a stop by a large truck that was going 40 mph. My airbags didn't deploy, which didn't surprise me, but my seatbelt did not properly engage. When I was rearended, I went forward and my head hit something, possible the steering wheel. The seatbelt finally engaged and strapped me back to the seat. Due to the failure of engagement, and my head hitting an object, I sustained a substantial concussion due to the head trauma and have post concussion syndrome which is greatly effecting me at home and at work.

- Stillwater, OK, USA

problem #11

Aug 012014

Sonata 4-cyl

  • 54,000 miles


Hello, I'm not sure if this qualifies, but this vehicle has a major defect in the compressor kicking on for air conditioning (per my own experience and examining forums of other users). The A/C does not come on intermittently, especially when the car hasn't been turned on for 3 or 4 hours. This can be a major safety concern in warm areas.

- Statesboro, GA, USA

problem #10

Mar 242014


  • 62,804 miles
My vehicle hyndai Sonata 2011, crashed into a parked construction in a parking lot at the speeds of up to 30 mph. The crash damaged basically the whole front side of the driver side and damaged the front two wheels. The front windshield was damaged as well with cracks on the shield and it also knocked out the rearview mirrors. I was in the driver seat when the crash happened and my head crashed up against the steering wheel, which left a little soreness. What I was wondering is with such an impact and such damage, how did the airbags not go off". my head slammed pretty good up against the steering wheel and a little more impact I could've been severely hurt. So I just want to ask why did the airbags not work"

- Breckenridge, TX, USA

problem #9

Feb 252012

Sonata 4-cyl

  • 28,000 miles
While entering a parking spot to a diner, the car unintended accelerated crashing into the side of the diner. Minor damage to the side of the diner as I was no more than 3 feet from the bldg. My foot was on the brake pedal when this acceleration occurred without warning. I was entering the parking spot at no more than 5 mph planning to put the car in park and exit for lunch. My leg hit the hood latch and I obtained a nasty cut on my shin. The consumer stated other components were replaced, such as the tires and transmission. The consumer also stated, when she turned the ignition, there was an odor of smoke and rubber burning. Updated 11/16/15.

- Manchester, NJ, USA

problem #8

Dec 272013

Sonata 4-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
Fatal accident, lost control of vehicle hitting a tree head on. Air bags did not deploy, engine caught on fire. Steering column air bag and passenger air bags intact. Notified Hyundai dealer where vehicle was purchased with 49995 miles, 2nd owner no previous incidents to the vehicle, had approx 80000 miles at time of crash.

- Myrtle, MS, USA

problem #7

May 012012


  • 700 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata hybrid. The driver was traveling between 35-40 mph when the vehicle was crashed into another vehicle. The air bags failed to deploy. Four passengers were injured in the crash. The police were contacted and a police report was filed. The vehicle was towed to a local repair shop and the manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired or inspected for the cause of the failure. The VIN was unavailable. The failure and the current mileages were 700.

- Springfield , OH, USA

problem #6

Mar 262011


  • 14,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that the air bag warning light was illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where they advised him that the air bag sensor needed to be reprogrammed. The vehicle was repaired for the sensor. After leaving the dealer, the light illuminated again. In addition, the vehicle refused to start on one occasion and the contact noticed smoke coming from the engine. The vehicle was later towed to the dealer where they advised him that the ground cable was defective and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired for the ground cable. The contact also stated that the front driver side window was open and could not be closed. The window failure was not repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 14,000.

- East Jewett, NY, USA

problem #5

Aug 252011


  • 10,550 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated as he stopped at a red light another vehicle crashed into the rear of his vehicle and he then into a vehicle in front of him. Both the driver and front passenger door opened simultaneously. No one fell out of the vehicle since they both were wearing seat belts. There was extensive damage to the front and back of the vehicle. Three people were transported to the hospital with head, chest and back injuries, they were treated and released. None of the air bags deployed. The warning light illuminated indicating that the air bags malfunctioned. The police was notified and a report was filed. The vehicle was driven to his residence. The insurance company and the dealer were notified. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 10,550. Updated 09/27/11 updated 2/23/12

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #4

Jul 242011


  • 9,900 miles
Tonight I was rear ended by a woman in an SUV, who's brakes did not work in her durango, she said. There were no skid marks indicating an attempted stop. Her impact on my vehicle was severe. Police officer guessed she was going 40 mph when she hit my car. My car was shoved forward into the car in front of mine, that car then hit the car in front of it. There were 3 cars, mine last in line, sitting at a red light. We were all stopped. Then there was a 4th car that hit mine from behind. The matter im reporting is that the airbags in my Hyundai Sonata SE 2011 car did not deploy when I then hit the car in front of me. The impact was great enough to cause that car to then hit another car and that caused a crack in the radiator of the car in front of mine. Also, after I hit that car in front of me, I then bounced back about 10 feet. More evidence of impact. Why no airbags? I did not see very much damage to the front of my car nor the back of the car that was directly in front of mine, while the back of my car was bad enough that I expect to be told it is not repairable.. im reporting just in case you receive any other reports indicating there is something faulty concerning airbags in the Hyundai. I know airbags are not to deploy in rear end collision but since I then hit another car frontally, I would think the airbags would deploy. My husband was in the passenger, front seat and in order to brace himself, he put his hand up at the windshield. The glass was broken in an area the size of a cantaloupe from the impact against his hand. Im thinking the impact must have been moderate to severe. On the up side, my Sonata took that hit and sustained the damage to the outside and up into the air at the trunk rather than into the cab of the car. My father and son were in the backseat and were not killed, I think because the car is a good, safe vehicle in a crash.

- Merriam, KS, USA

problem #3

Apr 212011


  • miles
While driving my 2001 Sonata, airbag light came on for the third time...going to the dealer to see if they can locate the problem.

- Ann Arbor, MI, USA

problem #2

Mar 132011


  • 16,000 miles
I was exiting one interstate highway onto another. Exit ramp direction was misjudged and car hit a guard rail. There was a frontal area crash causing in excess of $14,000 damage to the vehicle. Not any of the air bags deployed during the accident.

- Cumming, GA, USA

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