Notes: The 2011 Hyundai Santa Fe has a problem with the engine stalling while driving. Both our data & the NHTSA's complaint data show a significant defect trend at low mileage.

In a 2-page letter sent August 2014 to Santa Fe owners, Hyundai claims the engine stalling only occurs under a "specific set of operating conditions".

However a class action lawsuit filed around the same time details multiple claims from Sante Fe owners that claim the engine stalling happens at any time, under any conditions.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
20,606 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 Santa Fe engine problems

engine problem

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2011 Hyundai Santa Fe Owner Comments

problem #6

Jul 112014

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 55,369 miles


On June 11, 2014 my 2011 Hyundai Santa Fe ( 55051 miles) started making a whining sound when the car is first started. I took the car into a Hyundai dealer and they discovered that the pulley idler needed to be replaced. Fortunately my car is still under warranty. On June 27th, 2014 my Hyundai Santa Fe (55376 miles), check engine light came on. The car did not want to accelerate. Above 20 mph. I took the car back to the dealer and they discovered the 55376 PO638 lost communication and had to replace the throttle sensor. Coming home today July 17th 2014, the car was a little hesitant when accelerating after coming to a complete stop and trying to step on the gas pedal. Has anyone reported these problems?

- Missouri City, TX, USA

problem #5

May 132013

Santa Fe

  • 31,095 miles
Vehicle has stalled in traffic when driving under 10mph and also when at a standstill at a four way intersection. Took the vehicle to Hyundai dealership 5.13.2013 and a throttle body part was ordered and installed 5.21.2013. Vehicle again stalled twice at low speed and on 10.11.2013 (mileage 37,710) an ECM upgrade was done. Yesterday,10.26.2013, the car stalled again.

- Sonoma, CA, USA

problem #4

Jul 042013

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 26,000 miles
Twice, the engine has shut off, while trying to accelerate from an idle or stopped position. Luckily, both incidents were in an empty parking lot. The engine simply stopped running and I had to put it into parking gear, and restart the engine.

- Mission Viejo, CA, USA

problem #3

Mar 102012

Santa Fe 6-cyl

  • 7,600 miles


Driving slowly in traffic down a hill my steering wheel, gear shift and brakes locked up. Immediately my generator light came on my dashboard. I managed to pull over and somehow get the car in park. I turned the car off and realized through my manual my generator light was on. I opened the hood and couldn't see anything. When turning the car back on the light went off and everything was fine. That Monday I took the car to my dealership where I bought it and they told me they checked everything. Put the car up to a computer, drove it around, test everything couldn't find anything. I haven't had a problem since but something had to occur for this to happen. I am please with my car otherwise. Just hope this never happens again. It couldn't be weather related because it was neither super warm or super cold it was approximately 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Fortunately I was stuck in traffic otherwise if I was driving the speed limit this could have ended up very badly possibly even fatal.

- Aliquippa, PA, USA

problem #2

Nov 082011

Santa Fe

  • 673 miles
The contact owned a 2011 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact stated that while driving 68 mph, the engine began to emit a loud banging noise and caught on fire. The vehicle was maneuvered to the shoulder and stopped. A state trooper appeared on the scene to extinguish the fire. The vehicle was destroyed and towed to an authorized dealer. The failure was not diagnosed and the manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure and the current mileages were 673.

- Canton, OH, USA

problem #1

Jun 262011

Santa Fe

  • 2,900 miles
On May 26th 2011 around 6:20 pm when I drove on a local down hill road which is about 400 yard long, at a speed about 20 mph, my car lost brake and power steering. I supposed to stop at a stop sign and make a left turn. When I pressed my brake pedal, my car can't stop and the pedal was very heavy, and I can't turn the steering wheel either. My car kept going straight. I kept stepping on the brake pedal very hard and my car finally stopped in the middle of street gradually. When I looked, I noticed check engine light and oil light were on. I then turn off my car and rest a while. I then turned my car back on and found check engine light and oil light went off and everything seemed back to normal. Worth to note that it was hot that day about 90 degree and I ride on brake slightly for about 300 yard on that down hill road before this incident happened. I was able to drive slowly back home that day and brought my car to the closest Hyundai dealer at 7:30 am the next morning. However the dealer was not able to reproduce the failure and found nothing. I then contacted Hyundai and Hyundai created a case number and suggested me go to the selling dealer. On June 7th, I brought my car to the selling dealer and they could not reproduce the failure either and asked me to come back to them when it happens again. However, it could be dangerous when my car loses brake again when I am driving. I am wondering if there is any other way to investigate root causes or stress my car to reproduce this issue.

- Winchester, MA, USA

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