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.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
24,513 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 Sorento seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2003 Kia Sorento Owner Comments

problem #5

Oct 232005

Sorento 4WD 6-cyl

  • 20,000 miles


Air bag light keeps coming on. Kia fixed this issue at least 5 times now the light is back on and they will not repair because I am out of warranty. If air bag light is on air bags will not deploy at time of impact I have 3 small children. They have not been able to resolve the issue.

- Gloucester, NJ, USA

problem #4

Nov 032006

Sorento 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,000 miles
I had a 1 year old battery replaced, which was defective (non-Kia dealer). Afterwards, I noticed that the air bag warning light was illuminated. Kia dealer said it was due to a bad sensor ($300 part, $300 labor). It was too expensive for me to pursue correcting. I told the dealer to forget the repair.

- Stone Mountain, GA, USA

problem #3

Jul 152006


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving on Saturday, 7/15/06, I noticed a high pitched noise while steering. I was under the impression that the power steering fluid was low. After having an oil change and capping off my fluids, the noise continues and remains while driving. It is loud enough to hear over the radio and the air conditioner at the same time. I have placed this car in the shop for numerous repairs since its purchase in 2003 and have spent countless amounts of money on various problems, including replacing the bulbs, repairing the braks, the check engine light coming on immediately after purchase, the air bag sensor remains on and the list goes on and on. I have placed numerous complains to Kia directly as well as filed a compliant with the better business bureau to no avail. It would be my assumption that Kia will only be concerned about fixing these issues or recalling these vehicles only after some serious incidents have occurred.

- Upper Marlboro, MD, USA

problem #2

Jan 142005

Sorento 4WD 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 65 miles
The air bag sensor located in the front passenger seat did not engaged when a passenger sat in the, seat. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and they were unable to resolve the problem.

- New Egypt, NJ, USA

problem #1

May 262004

Sorento 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 31,500 miles
I was driving my vehicle to work. For the past 2 to 3 days, I noticed some noise from my engine that sounded like a loose belt. No problem, I could replace it on the weekend. On the way to work, my power steering went and the engine light flickered on and off. I didn't want to be stuck on a backroad in Maine with no cell service so I continued, slowly, to work. After reaching work, I had the 24 hour service tow my Kia Sorento to the nearest dealer. This vehicle is 18 months old and they tell me the bolt holding the crankshaft to the pulley has sheared off. They cannot remove the bolt pieces from the crankshaft and have to replace it. To top it off, the airbag light was on, for the second time, and the radio has been replace twice.

- Sanford, ME, USA

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