Notes: The 2012 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 to owners in August 2014, 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.


fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
10,528 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.

2012 Hyundai Santa Fe brakes problems

brakes problem

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2012 Hyundai Santa Fe Owner Comments

problem #3

Mar 202014

Santa Fe

  • 22,985 miles


1st of many total engine de-powerments happened at a stop sign, going approx.15 mph. I had filled the gas tank and at the first stop sign I came to, the engine check light came on; and it died, powerless. I coasted to my destination (less than a block away) and called my service rep at danbury Hyundai (ct). She told me it was due to an incorrect gas cap replacement, to undo the gas cap and start the car. It worked. After the first episode, this absolute powering down of everything, brake, steering, control; happened so often, it became routine. Gas tank filling had no bearing-but it happened at stop lights or stop signs, so I was able to coast to the side of the road, put the car in park and restart it. All that confidence evaporated yesterday. I was due to get on the highway and drive about 45 minutes on a combination of highway and thruway to my daughter's. I was on a busy local road that passes through danbury when the car's engine light came on, without me being at a stop sign or red light, or even braking for any reason, and I lost all control of the vehicle. This happens so suddenly, I might add, that you have no time to even activate the emergency flashers, or do anything besides grab the wheel with both hands and try to get over as far to the right as possible to avoid being hit from behind. I narrowly escaped being rear ended by a dump trunk directly behind me. I put the car into park, started it up, and called my service dept. At Hyundai. I explained that this happened again, since I had originally told them when I had the car serviced in may of 2014, and they had told me then, that they couldn't duplicate it, so they couldn't fix it. I explained that had I been already on the thruway I would be dead instead of on the phone. I came home called my lawyer and found his advice so helpful, I'm sharing it. Go to, auto line. They offer arbitration at 0$.

- Bethel, CT, USA

problem #2

Dec 272011

Santa Fe

  • 5,500 miles
While driving on an overpass and turning to the left, I had just applied the brakes and was applying the gas as I had to get onto the interstate. I noticed the car decelerated, I had no braking power and it was very difficult to steer the car so I coasted to the side of the road. I almost got rear ended by several cars behind me. All the lights were on the car but it seemed dead. I turned the key off and put the car in park. While talking to my husband, I turned the car on and it started and off I drove off with no further problems. What's worse is that day I had my two little girls and my mother in the car. I had to continue to driving since we were on our way to an important doctors appointment. I can't imagine if I were on the interstate at 70 miles an hour. When I called to make an appointment with Hyundai service they acted like it has never happened before.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #1

Dec 022011

Santa Fe

  • 3,100 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe. The contact was driving approximately 35 mph when the brake pedal was engaged; there was a delayed response and she also heard a squeaky noise. In addition, the pedal extended to the floor abruptly and the vehicle eventually came to a stop. The failure occurred intermittently at any given speed. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer who was unable to determine the cause of failure. The technician stated the defect was a common issue. There was a recall related to the brake malfunction associated with the 2011 model year vehicles under NHTSA recall campaign number 10V613000 (service brakes, hydraulic: Foundation disc: Caliper). The manufacturer was notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 3,100.

- Greensboro, PA, USA

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