ANNOUNCEMENT: The Car Book 2018 is now online!

Ratings on over 1,000 new & used models going back 5 years, from the Center from Auto Safety. Learn more about The Car Book 2018 here. Notes: So far the 2011 Elantra doesn't have the same volume of transmission problems that 2010 owners are fighting with. It also doesn't have the same pattern of steering and braking complaints that are piling up with the 2013 model year.

We're not saying the 2011 is perfect -- I mean, what were they thinking advertising their MPGs -- but there are worse choices.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
56,525 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 Elantra engine problems

engine problem

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2011 Hyundai Elantra Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #42

Jul 302018


  • 114,000 miles


I had my car for a year. When I first got my car, there was a knocking noise that came from the engine, I took it back to carmax to fix and they stated they did. My car ran good for a while and around August or September after leaving from work that same noise started again. This time it was bad and I almost got into a wreck. I took it to a mechanic they stated that I needed my engine replaced. I have seen that this is a ongoing issue with these models. I also show that there is a recall on my vehicle and my car is showing those exact signs. I have documentation of information from the mechanic and the cost of the labor and new engine

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #41

Feb 232017


  • 180,000 miles
Car was being driven in the highway when the car stalled. Oil flow is malfunctioning in the engine causing rod problems. According to dealership it's a known problem for this make and model. I am told that the engine rods are bad and the engine needs to be replace. I contacted the warranty company however they refused to cover the repair due to tire rotations and spark plugs purchased at the dealership and was replaced personally.

- Bowie, MD, USA

problem #40

Aug 012018


  • 90,000 miles
Possible crankshaft angle sensor failure. Car will not start properly or stalls after starting and shifting gears. New battery installed 9/29/2018. No spark plugs or alternator issues noted after mechanical testing. There should be a recall for this problem as most mechanics cannot locate the issue in testing.

- Chesapeake, VA, USA

problem #39

May 172018


  • 68,000 miles


Vehicle randomly does not start. When key is turned to position one lights, radio, windows, indicator lights all work as expected. When key is turned to start the engine nothing happens. The engine does not turnover or even attempt to turnover. The battery was replaced the first time this happened in April 2018. At that time I had the alternator and starter checked both were functioning properly. After repeated attempts to start the vehicle it has always started, eventually; it can take anywhere from 2 minutes to 30+ minutes for the engine to engage. When it first started occurring it happened pretty often. Prior to last Friday it had been a couple months since it took more than 30 minutes to start. I took the vehicle to another mechanic yesterday. Again starter, battery, alternator are all functioning properly. The mechanic mentioned that this model is known to have issues with the ignition and that I should contact the dealership, they may know what it is exactly. I've called two dealerships today, both say they know nothing about ignition problems in the vehicle.

- Elkridge, MD, USA

problem #38

Sep 082018


  • miles
The car makes a really bad ticking noise in when I came to an complete stop the engine stalled in it kinda jumped like it didn't want to go I'm so afraid of the car jus completely not working anymore in I drive everyday with my kids this is really a sad thing Hyundai has to know these engines are bad.

- Pompano Beach, FL, USA

problem #37

Jun 142017


  • 96,866 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Elantra. The contact stated that the engine stalled while driving various speeds. Also, the front and rear brakes failed intermittently. Furthermore, the electrical system warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer for diagnostic testing or repairs. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failures. The failure mileage was 96,866.

- Memphis, TN, USA

problem #36

Mar 202017


  • 39,000 miles


Bought this car used in 2014 with approx 24,000 miles. Ran great first 2 years but at approx 39,000 miles a very loud engine knock developed and has effected the engine performance. This issue is present at start up, idle, in motion, each time the car is running. Hyundai service mysteriously could not hear or diagnose the problem. Engine knock has continued get worse and power has diminished. The engine has not yet failed but most certainly will very soon. My family is at risk each and every time we use this car. The engine problems are similar to the sonata's and Santa Fe's as well as the Kia optima models from 2011 thru 2014 which were part of a class action lawsuit after which there was a engine recall. My understanding is that Hyundai has extended warranty to used Elantra models to 5 years and 60,000 miles. At this point we have only 56,000 miles but the car is 7 years old. They have a known manufacturing problem and are not owning it for all affected and that's catastrophic for those of us not covered. Dealer has told me if I have engine failure the cost of a new engine will be near $5000. Hyundai makes attractive cars but their lack of compassion to the victims of their poor manufacturing process makes Hyundai a poor choice. There have been class action suits for the sonata and optima but no judgement for the benefit of Elantra motors who's engines suffer the exact same issues. There was a whistle blower who opened this all up and said the judgement was not far reaching enough to cover all victims. Https:// someone like the NHTSA has to step up and protect the consumers who have fallen victim to this corporate malfeasance.

- Glen Ellyn, IL, USA

problem #35

Jun 062018


  • 120,000 miles
My car has making noise for a while. Emailed Hyundai and was told it is not under warranty and no recall for engine. Several complaints ha E been made online for this car regarding the engine which needs to be replaced. I'm afraid to drive it's my only car and I can't afford to pay $5000 for a new engine. I was stuck in the middle of a busy intersection when the car stalled and sounded like it was going to grind the engine up.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #34

Dec 012017


  • 82,000 miles
The contact owned a 2011 Hyundai Elantra. The contact stated that the vehicle made an abnormal tapping noise. The vehicle was taken to winner Hyundai (591 S dupont hwy, dover, de 19901) where it was diagnosed that a new engine was needed. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and did not assist. The vehicle was not repaired. The vehicle was traded in; therefore, the contact no longer owns the vehicle. The failure mileage was 82,000.

- Lincoln, DE, USA

problem #33

Apr 192018


  • 85,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Elantra. The contact noticed an odor of antifreeze coming through the air conditioning vents while driving at an unknown speed. The contact pulled the vehicle over after noticing smoke coming from the engine. The vehicle was towed to piazza Hyundai of pottstown (84 autopark blvd, limerick, pa 19468 (484) 933-4074) where the contact was advised that the engine block needed to be replaced; however, the long engine block was no longer being made by Hyundai and the vehicle was no longer under warranty. The contact inquired about Hyundai buying back the vehicle. The manufacturer was notified. The failure mileage was 85,000.

- Chadsford, PA, USA

problem #32

Oct 312017


  • 105,695 miles


While driving the car, engine went into a loud whine sound and the car lost power. Car would not start or even try to turn over when trying to start. We have had previous problems involving the engine and even contacted Hyundai because I was told by my mechanic that there was a recall on the exact engine that is involved here, but Hyundai refused to acknowledge this because it wasn't the same model car involved in the engine recall. But it was the exact engine model. Attached is a letter from my mechanic

- Great Neck, NY, USA

problem #31

Oct 012017


  • miles
"takata recall" its was alright going to store but going back home the car just shut off and it wont start

- Philadelphia, MS, USA

problem #30

Jan 082018


  • 82,000 miles
I started my car and it had developed a loud knock. My car has just over 82K miles. My mechanic informed me that it needed a new engine. I took my car to two dealerships and both said it was a common problem/defect for this make and model year. The dealership informed me that it was caused by a coating on the pistons coming off that eventually causes the knock and engine failure. One dealership had 3 Elantras in their shop for the same issue. My car is not under warranty as I am the second owner. This defect should be addressed as it is exactly the same issue as the sonatas which were recalled.

- Mt. Vernon, IA, USA

problem #29

Nov 082017


  • 12,554 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Elantra. The contact stated that the vehicle experienced a loss of engine power while being operated at approximately 55 mph. The failure occurred without warning. Vision Hyundai webster (755 ride rd, webster, NY) was contacted, but the failure was not diagnosed. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 12,554.

- Penfield, NY, USA

problem #28

Sep 102017


  • 90,000 miles
While driving city or highway there is a loud knocking sound and as you accelerate it gets faster and louder. My car has been at Hyundai in valley stream, NY for 4 days with no conclusion.

- Lynbrook, NY, USA

problem #27

Jun 272017


  • 89,196 miles
Our car has been intermittently not starting and rattling. We it took to a Hyundai dealer three times in 9 months and paid over $600 but each time the problem continued. Finally the mechanic drained the oil and took a magnet to it. Metal fragments were pulled out. The mechanic said the car needed a new engine as the result of a manufacturer defect-same as the sonatas that have been recalled. We called Hyundai to report the problem. They said since the car is no longer under warranty there is nothing they are able to do.

- Clear Lake, MN, USA

problem #26

Jun 172017


  • 47,440 miles
While I was driving, the car stalled. The tach reading droped to zero, and engine light was on. I tried restarting my car. I could drive slowly, but the engine light was still on, and the tach reading was still zero. This happened for a few times --- when I drove on highway, on a local street, and when I waited for a long light. If starting after a long enough rest, those symptoms might disappear temporarily.

- Natick, MA, USA

problem #25

Feb 222016


  • 28,000 miles
I bought my car brand new in 2011. I don't drive much at all so my car has 33,000 miles. So when my car stared making a ticking noise in the engine, that was louder when idling but never went away completely. I didn't think to much of it. Dropped it off to get looked at and that's when I found out there was metal in my engine. This meant I needed a new engine, this was about 14 months ago, so it went in for 3-4 days after waiting a month to get the part. After the replaced engine it worked well and the noise was gone, so I thought that was the end. So when the noise came back just 11 months later I wasn't happy. Dropped it off and sure enough it needs a new engine. This time it took 3 weeks for them to replace my engine. The service at my local Hyundai is so bad. Everyday I called to see if my car was ready because it was supposed to last 3 days, 3 weeks later I had a second new engine. Now yesterday just 2 months later my car is yet again making the ticking noise and now is having trouble starting. I called my local Hyundai to make a service appointment and had to leave a message, still haven't heard back its been 2 business days. I'm really disappointed my car is 6 years old and has just 33,000 miles and working on its 3rd new engine.

- Salem, MA, USA

problem #24

Jan 012017


  • miles
While running in park, idling in drive, or driving less than 30mph the engine makes a ticking/knocking noise. The noise could still be there after 30mph but I can't hear it over the motor and road noise. Hyundai and Kia recently recalled 1.4 million cars for this exact reason for engine failure. But for some reason this model/year is not included. Researching online, you can see that many people have had to replace the engine despite being only a few years old with low miles. My vehicle is a 2011 with 70,000 miles.

- Chisholm, MN, USA

problem #23

Mar 082017


  • 77,800 miles
Ticking sound coming from car, louder when accelerating, took to dealer and was told engine needs to be replaced at only 77,800 miles

- Mchenry, IL, USA

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