hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
61,368 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.

2001 Hyundai Santa Fe engine problems

engine problem

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2001 Hyundai Santa Fe Owner Comments

problem #8

Sep 192011

Santa Fe

  • 143,000 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact stated that while driving approximately 25 mph, the engine rpms increased excessively and the vehicle independently accelerated to over 100 mph while the brake was depressed. The contact was able to stop the vehicle and had it towed to a local mechanic. A diagnostic was performed and the failure was located at the cruise control cable. The mechanic re-crimped the cruise control cable and the vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 143,000 and the approximate current mileage was 150,000. The VIN was not available.

- Shoreline , WA, USA

problem #7

Jun 212012

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 113,000 miles
When approaching a stop (<5mph) and braking, the car engages in unintended acceleration. The engine will tach to over 3000 RPM and if you are not hard on the brakes, the car will accelerate. At least one time the car had to be put into neutral and the ignition turned off to keep the car under control.

- San Ramon, CA, USA

problem #6

Jan 312009

Santa Fe

  • 120,295 miles
I am writing in regards to a problem with a 2001 Hyundai Santa Fe. I borrowed the car from my girlfriend to run an errand. Being 6 foot tall and having a size 13 foot I must say the car wasn't very comfortable even with the drivers seat all the way back. It seemed to respond and handle smoothly but as I eased on the brake to slow for a railroad crossing, the toe of my work boot became wedged between the brake pedal and the accelerator. The vehicle suddenly launched like a rocket and my impulse was to press on the brake pedal with my free (left) foot. This only depressed the accelerator further to the floor and the car continued to speed out of control. It went from 30 mph to nearly 90 mph in a very short period of time and in a moment of clarity I reached for the ignition key. I switched the ignition off losing all power steering and braking capabilities but was able to bring the vehicle to a stop without incident. At this point I was able to free my right foot from it's trapped position between the two control pedals and sat in a state of shock. It was 2 days later that I really came back to a somewhat logical state of mind and decided to do some research and hopefully alert other drivers to this potential deadly problem. Much to my horror, I find that I'm not the first one to experience this and being mechanical myself can see that these cars are not designed by 6 foot engineers with size 13 boots. I found a similar complaint on the aboutautomobile.com forum while searching the 2001 Santa Fe ( complaint number 754795) and agree that these vehicles have a serious design flaw in the proximity of the brake / accelerator pedal configuration. For a person of my stature, they can be potential death traps !

- Franktown, VA, USA

problem #5

Nov 162007

Santa Fe

  • 80,000 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact stated that while the vehicle was idling and as the accelerator pedal was depressed, the vehicle dramatically accelerated. The RPM's surged to approximately 3,000. The dealer could not duplicate the failure or provide a sufficient remedy. As of October 8, 2008, the vehicle has not been properly repaired. The manufacturer did not assist. The failure mileage was 80,000 and current mileage was 90,000.

- Staton Island, NY, USA

problem #4

Dec 072007

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I was coming to a red light and let off the gas to coast before putting on my brakes(my dad taught me well to do this instead of being a quick braker to make my brakes last longer). At about 25mph my car began to accelerate back up to 30, then 35, then 40. I panicked. I pressed the brakes very hard but the RPM's were still rising and I could hear the engine still accelerating. I tried putting it into park, no luck. I then turned the car off while in park. Scary!!!! my kids were with me. Had I not been able to stop we'd have been killed while plowing into cross traffic traveling at 55mph or more! after restarting the car, it seemed better. Then 5 miles down the road it did it again. I drove it back home (8miles) with no incident. 2 days later while driving my son home from school, this episode repeated 4 times. With each "restart" it became more difficult to start the car and I had to wait (yes, in traffic) 5 minutes before starting the car again. I needed transmission work, took it in, $2000 rebuild. Told them about the issue and they could find nothing but hot maybe after the transmission work was done it would resolve. Not a chance. They are stumped as to what's wrong. They've checked the throttle body and parts. No codes come up. They've unhooked the cruise control. My husband drove it home this past weekend so a friend could look at it and see what he thought and my husband was driving on a long stretch of road with no stops and the car was driving at 50mph with him not pushing the gas pedal. Help!!! this is going to hurt or kill somebody.

- Ocala, FL, USA

problem #3

Dec 012005

Santa Fe 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 34,650 miles
The contact stated that while parking put the vehicle in reverse then drive and the tachometer went to the red zone. Although the contact's foot was on the brake the vehicle moved approximately 15 feet forward in 30 seconds. Then, he then the vehicle off and back on, and the problem was gone. This repeated a week later. He had the vehicle towed to the dealership, who determined that the battery was run down and needed to be replaced. The dealership was unable to diagnose the cause of the problem. They ruled out a cruise control because it has never been used. Update 1/4/2006 -

- Melville, NY, USA

problem #2

Jan 112002

Santa Fe 4WD

  • miles
My car lurched (due to transmission) out into the middle of a main road and lurched almost into another car at a separate time, and now the speedometer doesn't work.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #1

Oct 192001

Santa Fe 4WD

  • miles
Vehicle hestitates on acceleration, and cuts off. Harness, throttle body, throttle body sensor, compressor, egr gasket, plugs, valves, etc., all replaced. Problem still exists. Manufacturer and dealership can't fix problem. They have had no other complaints of this problem, per steve hickman (man. Rep) and dealership. After replacing harness, steve hickman assured me that the vehicle would be fixed, the vehicle still cuts off and the RPM bounces up and down while the truck is bucking and then it will cut off!! serious safety hazard!! (dot number: Hma010900 tiresize: P225/70-16)

- Arlington, VA, USA

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