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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
17,517 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 Kia Optima seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2003 Kia Optima Owner Comments

problem #4

Jun 282006

Optima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,000 miles


: the contact stated, while traveling through an intersection at 25 mph., the vehicle was struck on the driver's front door by a police vehicle running a red light, without the emergency lights on. Both frontal and side airbags failed to deploy. Injuries were incurred in the collision. A police report was filed and pictures were taken at the scene. The airbag sensor light was replaced by a service dealer, approximately one-year prior to the accident.

- Annapolis, MD, USA

problem #3

Jun 262005

Optima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 21,569 miles
I was involved in an accident where the front and side airbags failed to deploy. My car was a 2003 Kia Optima. The site of impact was on the left front end but substained major damage to the entire front of the vehicle. I have several photo's of the car, which was totaled by my insurance adjuster. My concern is if there is a defect with this car regarding the airbags. A close male friend, who was a mechanical engineer for chysler, could not explain/understand why the airbags failed. Please help me get to the bottom is this matter.

- Florence, KY, USA

problem #2

Mar 092004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,000 miles
Air bag light is on. Dealer ordered the part. However, they have been unable to obtain the part, this makes driver's side air bag inoperable.

- Saint Joseph, MO, USA

problem #1

Jul 082004

Optima 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,500 miles
The consumer rear ended another vehicle. The consumer was wearing his seat belt, however the air bags did not deploy. The dealer claimed that the collision was under the truck's bumper. The consumer's vehicle was totaled. The consumer suffered shoulder and head injuries in the collision.

- Herndon, PA, USA

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