hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
92,861 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 Hyundai Santa Fe drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2003 Hyundai Santa Fe Owner Comments

problem #9

Sep 222014

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 62,450 miles


We purchased this vehicle used in June of 2014 with 62,450 miles on it. The exterior and interior were in great shape. The vehicle was taken to a Hyundai dealer in July for an inspection of the rear suspension per a recall. At that time a complete inspection was done, with only a small oil leak found on one axle shaft. Two months later the vehicle was take back to the dealer for a recall for a broken spring. At this time a second inspection was completed. This time several issues were found from corrosion including leaking transmission lines, leaking engine oil pan, leaking boots at the front drive axles requiring them both needing to be replaced. The service manager at the Hyundai dealer stated he had never seen a vehicle with this level of corrosion. All components under the vehicle have extensive corrosion with apparently a rapid rate of deterioration. The vehicle is used only on-road being driven by our son to and from college. The dealer has no explanation as to what could be the cause of the rapid deterioration. All under body components appear to be vulnerable to this high level of deterioration. The dealer is willing to repair the vehicle but the dealer stated there is no way to tell what or when other components could possibly fail, such as the brake lines etc. Hyundai was contacted regarding the concern but stated there was no action they would take at this time. They did reluctantly agree to call the dealership to inquire with them about the extent of the corrosion.

- Canton, IL, USA

problem #8

May 032014

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 197,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact stated that when ignition key was removed, the engine would not shut off. The gear was in park but the vehicle continued to slowly move forward. The vehicle was taken to the independent mechanic, who stated that the ignition pin controller needed to be replaced to repair the vehicle. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 197,000. Updated 7/7/14 updated 07/14/2014

- Port Orange, FL, USA

problem #7

Feb 222014

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 126,000 miles
3 times this happened on said day. Driving on freeway. With cruise control on car lurched forward jerking all three of us. A couple days later sitting at an intersection waiting for the light to change green. The car lurched forward again. Tossing me back causing my foot to come off the brake! luckily I was able to get my foot back on the brake before I moved too many feet into the crosswalk. I spoke to beaverton Hyundai and they said they were unaware of this... I mentioned it was out on the internet and on the Hyundai forum. I was told it was not their forum therefore they don't look at it... I have owned the car for 10 years. This has happened several times through the years I have driven this car but it is getting worse and scarier!!

- Beaverton, OR, USA

problem #6

Aug 202013

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 201,000 miles


The passenger from sub frame broke dropping the lower control arm bending the wheel out. This was at big O tires checking alignment. I see there was a class action law suit on this matter covering 2001-2003 santafe's. the front sub frame must be replaced.

- Shelbyville, KY, USA

problem #5

Oct 152011

Santa Fe

  • 107,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact was driving 35 mph when the gear shifter would not move into gear, causing the vehicle to stall in the middle of traffic. The vehicle was towed to the contact's residence. The manufacturer was notified of the failure who stated there were no recalls and any repairs would be at the contact's expense. The failure mileage was 107,000.

- Farrell, PA, USA

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problem #4

Aug 082008

Santa Fe

  • 41,000 miles
My 2003 hyuandai sante fe stalls anytime the crankshaft position sensor gets hot (at least this is what the service manager [Mr. Labese] at john amato auto - milwaukee, Wisconsin explains). I've had countless close call vehicle accidents and I have taken my vehicle in to be repaired only to have the vehicle stall over and over again even after the part above was replaced. This is very dangerous and very unsafe I have been very lucky to this point!

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #3

May 252008

Santa Fe

  • 100,000 miles


Leak in the transfer case.

- Lancaster, KY, USA

problem #2

Jun 302003

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • miles
The consumer stated that when he stepped on the pedal to give the vehicle gas to take off, it did not move. The consumer had to apply excessive force to get the vehicle to move. The vehicle had been in the shop 3 times, and the last time the mechanic put in a sensor, but that did not make a difference because the car still was not responding to the pedal. The dealer/mechanic said that there was no way to fix this problem.

- Green Valley, AZ, USA

problem #1

Jun 302003

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 1,300 miles
When the gas pedal was applied, the vehicle had a delay in accelerating. Dealer notified. The dealer stated that the problem was normal. The vehicle did not accelerate normally. The consumer said that other Santa Fe models had displayed the same problem.

- Green Valley, AZ, USA

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