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.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
28,235 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.

2013 Kia Sorento engine problems

engine problem

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2013 Kia Sorento Owner Comments (Page 4 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #26

Apr 302013


  • 21,000 miles


In April 2013, we were driving normally at approximately 30 miles an hour when the accelerator went out and all of the engine lights came on. The steering wheel locked and we just had to wait for the car to stop. Brought it in and they worked on the throttle. Last week, it happened again. Kia dealership was not helpful at all. They screened the car and said they couldn't find a problem. They did no repairs, but reported that they had to do an ECM upgrade. Contacted the Kia headquarters regarding this matter and indicated that there has to be a problem if the same issue has occurred twice in a span of several months. We also informed them that we felt the car was unsafe and they opened a case to note the issue. We have children, and this is a serious risk. We just got the car in April of 2013.

- Carson City, NV, USA

problem #25

Sep 112013


  • 14,887 miles
Have a 2013 Kia Sorento. Purchased used end of May 2013. Wife noticed at times the vehicle would stall or shutdown with the engine light on. Happened again 09/11/2013. Took it the Kia place and they did the following: Cause: SA153 xma vq ECM upgrade cause: Found P2111 throttle actuator failure 28325R1A vcm motor assy ( theta eng ), R&R 1 - 35100-3C700 etc-actuator 1 - UM040-CH010 throttle pl & ind cl they claim this resolved it....we will see!

- Alpharetta, GA, USA

problem #24

Sep 082013


  • 5,880 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Kia Sorento. The contact stated that while traveling at various speeds, the vehicle suddenly stalled. The contact also mentioned that the vehicle failed to respond to acceleration attempts. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the failures could not be replicated. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not contacted about the failures. The failure mileage was 5,880.

- Aliso Viejo, CA, USA

problem #23

Jul 172013


  • 11,786 miles


I was approaching a red light and applied the brakes quickly as I was going too quickly to stop at the stop line if I had not. I was only going about 20-25 mph. As I applied the brakes the car shut off. I was unable to place the car in park for a couple of minutes and the car did not respond at all. After I blocked traffic for a couple of light changes and cars were honking, I was able to place car on park and restart it. It has not happened since. I recently noticed a high pitched but very low sound while driving at first I wasn't sure where it was coming from. I am due for an oil change so I will let the dealership know when I take it in soon.

- Ridgewood, NY, USA

problem #22

Aug 052013


  • 22,000 miles
I bought 2 brand new Kia's and one being a 2013 Sorento in November 2012. Yesterday, on the fwy during rush hour I was in the fast lane when my emission light went on and I was losing speed (going up hill). Luckily I was able to make it to the shoulder. I turned the car off, sat for a few and started the car. I was able to drive off the fwy and pull over. I was able to use the navigation system to find a local Kia dealer that was 2 miles away. It was discovered that they needed to replace my throttle and was told that this shouldn't happen till after the car is over 100K. I'm very grateful that the mechanic stayed to fix my car as it was 4:45P and they leave at 5P and I was still 40 miles from home. This is the only issue I've had with my car other than either my key fob not working properly or the rear trunk door has a malfunction; I'm unable to use the key fob to electronically open the rear door. It has never worked since purchasing the vehicle, I just haven't had the time to drop the car off and be without a vehicle for the day on something that is minor.

- Anaheim, CA, USA

problem #21

Jul 172013


  • 13,600 miles
My 2013 Kia Sorento engine shut off while driving about 20 mph. I was able to pull over to the side safely. I was able to start the car and drive off. My husband drove the car about a week ago to pick me up from work and the engine shut off again. He was on the freeway but he was only driving about 30 mph in traffic. He pulled over shut the car off. He turned the car back on put it in gear, but the car would not go. Yesterday and today it happen twice.

- Aliso Viejo, CA, USA

problem #20

Jun 122013


  • 30,556 miles


I had just purchased the vehicle about 2 weeks ago. It was used but only had 29875 miles. As I was driving on the road preparing to stop at a light the engine shut off and the check engine lights turned on. I lost power steering, luckily I was next to a burger king and was able to coast into the parking lot. As soon as I stopped I put the vehicle into park and was able to start it up again. I had brought it into the dealership and they kept it for the day, but told me that they could not duplicate the problem and the diagnostic revealed there was no issue. I thought that it might have been just a rare occurrence, but a week later the same thing happened again. Both times my 4 month old son was in the vehicle. I have brought it back to the dealership and told them to keep it as long as they need to fix the problem. I don't want it back until it is fixed. I hope Kia does the right thing and recalls the vehicle before someone gets seriously injured.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #19

Jun 032013


  • 9,000 miles
On 6/3/2013, pulling into a gas station the car engine just shut off. Couldn't steer the car or break. Put it in park and restarted. On 6/18/2013, slowing down for a pedestrian and coming to a stop the engine shut off. Put it in park and restarted. When I restarted it my seat cooler turned on automatically. Car is at the dealer right now, over night because they cannot diagnose it without it happening to them. I purchased a brand new car so I wouldn't have to go to the mechanic, now I don't even want the car if I have to worry about my safety and the safety of others every time I drive it. I hope Kia makes this right and finds the problem or recalls the car.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #18

Jun 162013


  • 11,400 miles
While driving home from a weekend vacation, with roughly 130 miles remaining of the trip, running at 70-80 mph on expressway, the car lost RPM, stalled, and would not accelerate. This happened at roughly 2:15pm. I had to pull over to the side of the road, crossing over 2 lanes of expressway traffic, while coasting, with my wife a 3yr old child in his car seat. I turned the car off and restarted the car in which RPM's were back and car was running. We stopped at my wife's parents and looked up engine stalling issues on the 2013 Kia Sorento. I was shocked at what I saw. There are multiple entries, with individuals with the exact same issue. In reviewing their claims, it appears that mechanics are having issues identifying and fixing the problem. Are our way back from parents, this happened again at 4:45pm, and a third time at 5:06pm. We stayed in the furthest right lane and safely pulled off. The check engine light is on. Since it is Sunday, and the dealer isn't open, the car will be brought to the dealership first thing in the morning tomorrow. This car was just brought to the Kia dealership last week to have front suspension work done, due to jerking and clicking effects, for no accident reason, nor any reason at all, as well as a faulty volume control on the steering wheel. Very disappointed in Kia and this vehicle, and we will be taking action to have this situation rectified.

- Montgomery, IL, USA

problem #17

Feb 012013

Sorento 6-cyl

  • 4,000 miles
While driving my vehicle at about 10 mph on the expressway/street, my car just shut off for no reason and the engine light went on. I had to restart my vehicle. Sometimes, when at a stance, the vechicle shakes a little as if it wants to shut off. I'll restart it and it seems to help a little bit. I am extremely concerned as the car has shut off on me at least 5 separate times. I feel this is a hazard for my four year old son and I. please look into this serious matter. Thank you!

- Skokie, IL, USA

problem #16

Mar 092013

Sorento 6-cyl

  • 9,000 miles


We leased 2013 Kia Sorento in Aug 2012 after driving few months engine starts to shut down by it self, the first time shuts down on my driveway, I didn't contact dealer at that time, after few months I was driving on street and engine shuts down again and I couldn't put the car in park to start the engine again, called aaa tow truck to tow the car to dealer, after few days the couldn't find any problem but dealer contacted Kia center for help and they changed parts and hoping everything is fixed but after few months the problem start again and engine shuts down again and again and again almost five times in one month, the last time engine shuts down when my wife was going to drop off our kids at school and all the cars stopped in the morning rush hour, they were panicked and we contacted dealer again for second time and took the car in for repair, after few days test drive and test everything they couldn't find anything and they did connect a recording device to our car to record the fault or code when engine is shutting down, this is inconvenient all the wires are hanging from that device. We explained this issue to dealer service manager, sales manager and it is high safety issue, I am wondering if those managers will drive this car or their family will drive this car around, it is very easy to tell us we couldn't find anything, thank god we didn't involve in any accident but if happens I am wondering what kind of answer will get from dealer. So we are going to drive around and next time will be third time and by California lemon law they have to take this car away and return our money or give us a new car.

- Glendale, CA, USA

problem #15

May 252013


  • 28,606 miles
My husband and I purchased this vehicle on 5/25/13. We had the car for 2 hours and were driving home when the vehicle stalled and when holding the gas pedal to the floor, the car would not go. The RPM's didn't move either. The engine check light came on as well. I got the vehicle to the side of the road and turned it off and when I turned it back on and pushed the gas pedal down, the RPM's moved and when I put it in gear, the car moved down the road again. My husband then took over driving and this happened to him four times. The last time that it did this, it took turning the car off and restarting it three times before it would even go down the road. We are hoping to return this car to the dealership and get our trade in back and will not get a Kia ever again.

- Spalding, NE, USA

problem #14

Apr 252013

Sorento 4-cyl

  • 9,800 miles
This contact is reporting about 2013 Kia Sorento. I was driving slowly and I heard a noise. It sounded like a rubbing or popping nose. I called and made an appointment. I also complained about the stalling I felt when I was driving 20-30 miles an hour. The mechanic stated yes I noticed that but I think it is the eco system which saves gas. I said cant we turn it off? he stated he did not know. He ordered the part (strut top bearing) for the popping sound, gave me the note he wrote, and it did not say a word about the stall..however, when I drove off the lot and figured out how to turn off the eco system the car stalled worse, it feel T as if the car was having issues shifting in to gear. This is so awful, I am paying 26,000 dollars for this car and it is my first car and here I am having issues already... it also feels like it is veering to side to side when I drive it, but the mechanic stated he was not able to duplicate the problem.

- Sciotoville, OH, USA

problem #13

Jan 162013


  • miles
We bought the 2013 Kia Sorento in September 2012 with 140miles on it. We've had no issues till this year my wife had her 1st stall in mid January while at a stop sign. She never mentioned it to me until it happened a second time in February. It finally happened to me during the second week in March on a Saturday I was bringing my son to baseball practice I pulled out of my driveway drove to the end of the street and stopped at the corner but when I pressed on the gas the car didn't move. It took me a few seconds till I noticed it had stalled it was so quick and silent I didn't hear or feel it stall. I put it in park then started it and it's been fine till today when my wife went to pick up our kids from school. She was driving slowly on the side streets next to the school looking for a parking space when it just died. This is extremely dangerous if this happens and causes an accident or even a fatality Kia will have a serious law suit on their hands. I'm bringing my Kia to the dealer on April 18, 2013 but when I spoke to the service guy on the phone today he mentioned if there are no codes there's not much to go on to determine a problem.

- New Bedford, MA, USA

problem #12

Nov 292012


  • 350 miles
At an idle, this vehicle runs rough and shakes. It feels as though it will stall. I do not believe this should be happening with a new car. I told the mechanic at my first maintenance check, and he acted as if it would get better with an oil change. It seems to be getting worse. I commute 120 miles a day for work, and I have had the car for 5 months, it has 9000 miles now. Now the radio will not turn on? this concerns me that maybe something electrical is malfunctioning.

- Rehoboth, MA, USA

problem #11

Mar 242013

Sorento 6-cyl

  • 11,000 miles
Engine started making a loud noise, checked oil turned engine off and on again and noise continued. Drove home approx 150 miles from visiting our son at college. After arriving at home engine still made noise. Took into dealer the following day and today was informed we are needing a new short block engine and it's on backorder for a week and a half. Not a happy customer, since I am making car payments and don't have the vehicle. It worries me what is yet to come with this vehicle. The reason we purchased it to begin with was the warranty, but had we known we'd be using it 7 months into owning this Kia I would have never purchased it to begin with. I do want to say the dealership we are dealing with are extremely helpful with a loaner car, although it's a sedan and not what I purchased. So they are doing their part and I appreciate that fact.

- Gloucester, VA, USA

problem #10

Sep 032012


  • 18 miles
On 9-3-12 bought a new 2013 Kia Sorento with the base 4 engine. Next day noticed a vibration when idling in drive. The car shakes. Notified dealer immediately. Dealer noticed concern but could not address. No applicable service bulletin. In December dealer notified me of a possible solution. Dealer installed a new tensioner and alternator pulley. Changes did lesson the vibrations. But an unacceptable vibration still exists when idling in drive. The vibration disappears when the transmission is put in N when idling in drive.

- Lake Zurich, IL, USA

problem #9

Dec 082012

Sorento 4-cyl

  • 23 miles
We purchased 2 Kia vehicles on 12-8-2013, one being the 2013 Kia Sorento AWD 4-cyl-gdi. We took delivery of the vehicle and had to return on Monday to turn in the other trade. We questioned the salesman about the rough idle and loud noise that it made at stops but he said it was normal and it would work itself out after a break-in period. The next day when we were stopped at a red light the vehicle began to shake and the lights stated to flicker, I told my wife to give it gas and then it stopped..until she let off the pedal. We submitted am inquiry to Kia through the website and by the next day we were contacted by a regional rep. We scheduled an appointment to bring it in and then I began researching this which I quickly lost that warm fuzzy feeling of a new Kia owner! we left our vehicle at the dealership for days until we had enough, we were fixing to have to pay a note on a vehicle we didn't have! we called and picked our vehicle back up, we are being told that the parts are on back-order from Korea. We have been contacted from a rep out of Georgia now and we just keep being told to be patient. I am not happy at all as we purchased two new vehicles and we should not be having to deal with this. Had we left our vehicle at the dealership (which is what they wanted while we drove a nasty rental) we be out for at least a month as the parts aren't scheduled to be shipped until the 21st of January! we have no idea of our legal rights if any, and I do not feel comfortable with my wife and children in this vehicle. Kia offers nothing more than a stinky rental car and please be patient....the service manager however at the dealership has been wonderful..unlike the sales manager!

- Orange, TX, USA

problem #8

Dec 142012

Sorento 4-cyl

  • 1,450 miles
2013 Kia Sorento 4 cylinder. While at stop light engine revved up and lunged forward. Applied harder brake until stop light turned green. Vehicle at dealership for two days so far waiting alternator replacement. Service department states never had to replace an alternator before and not in stock, waiting for overnight shipping for two days. Dealer states they have no control over defective parts, but will fix and service vehicle when parts arrive.

- Sutter, IL, USA

problem #7

Sep 252012


  • 25 miles
A day after I purchased a new Kia Sorento ex gdi 2013 (9/25/2012), I noticed that it had rough idle at stop. I took my car to dealership to fix the rough idle issue next day, however after 4 days of troubleshooting by mechanic with Kia support engineer, they were not able to resolve it. Tsb#122 (ECM software upgrade) was alreay applied prior to my purchase. Even today, I still have the same issue. My current mileage is 2800 miles.

- Valencia, CA, USA

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