really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
33,434 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 Sonata accessories - exterior problems

accessories - exterior problem

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2003 Hyundai Sonata Owner Comments

problem #5

Dec 012009


  • 47,782 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Hyundai Sonata. He received recall 09V171000 pertaining to rust on the frame. He was not satisfied with the method used to correct the recall repair. He stated that the manufacturer placed stickers on the door handle and that they were unfolding due to the temperature in his state. He also stated that since the stickers were metallic, they could possibly cut you if handled incorrectly. Neither the dealer nor the manufacturer were willing to assist any further and advised the contact to simply remove the stickers. The contact was not satisfied with their response. There were no failures at this time. The current mileage was 47,782.

- Minneappolis, MN, USA

problem #4

Mar 072005


  • 30,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 hyundia Sonata. The vehicle was parked when the contact observed that the interior front driver and passenger chrome door handle exhibited a crack and began to separate. There was also a sharp edge on the chrome plate surface. A passenger in the front seat sustained an injury to a finger on the defective door handle. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer for inspection. The vehicle was repaired under the NHTSA campaign id number 09V171000 (latches/locks/linkages:doors:latch). The recall remedy was insufficient and did not address the recall defect. The contact had concerns of the safety risk involved. The failure mileage was 30,000. The current mileage was 96,000.

- Brea, CA, USA

problem #3

Aug 052009


  • 42,193 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Hyundai Sonata. During a routine oil change the dealer repaired recall #09V171000, component: Latches/locks/linkages:doors:latch Hyundai recall# 093. The repair consisted of placing a plastic cover on the door handle. The mileage was 42,193.

- Cape Canaveral, FL, USA

problem #2

Aug 132006

Sonata 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,000 miles
2003 Hyundai Sonata 4 door sedan. Chrome is peeling from metal interior door handles at random such that passenger or driver will grasp handle to open door and several lacerations to hands and fingers will result. Lacerations are deep enough to release blood. I was a driver and passenger on separate occasions in same vehicle and cut right and left hands on both interior door handles. Upon first encountering peeling chrome on drivers side handle, the vehicle was returned to Hyundai dealership at 3675 sheridan drive amherst, New York (716) 835-8500. Said dealership replaced the driver side handle but did not replace any others. Subsequently, when opening the passenger side door on August 13, 2006, I cut my right hand in several locations resulting in a release of blood. My wife had also cut her hand on the driver side handle. Apparently Hyundai is aware of this issue which is a safety related manufacturing defect resulting from a defective plating / cleaning process prior to plating. Hyundai however, has not issued a voluntary recall of all vehicles for this reason. Plating defects such as this are process related and will be present in thousands of vehicles assembled. I am a experienced quality engineer and director and am knowledgeable of the plating process. My claim is based upon the fact that the Hyundai dealership maintains stock replacement handles and other claims posted on www.edmunds.com as follows: Chrome on interior door handles peel off and causes major cuts on hands when opening door.... 03/10/2004, review of a 2003 Sonata 4 cylinder sedan by jbs... www.edmunds.com/used/2003/Hyundai/Sonata/100188028/ratings_consumer.html - 124K - cached - similar pages.

- Grand Island , NY, USA

problem #1

Jul 232004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,196 miles
My car door caught on fire while I was driving. The insurance adjuster and the body repair technician both concluded after investigation that the fire appeared to be caused by a faulty door actuator. The dealer refused to correct the problem or even acknowledge or investigate the conclusions. I had to repair the problem out of my pocket. Nothing has been done to correct the failure by the dealer.

- Tenino, WA, USA

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