Notes: The 2011 Sonata has a seriously defective engine that seizes without warning. It was awarded the dubious honor of being the first CarTalk / CarComplaints Turd of the Week in late September 2015.

A class action lawsuit was filed in May 2015 against Hyundai that claims the 2.4L Sonata engine is defective. More info here.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 8
Injuries / Deaths:
5 / 0
Average Mileage:
38,032 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 Sonata electrical problems

electrical problem

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2011 Hyundai Sonata Owner Comments (Page 2 of 10)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #178

Feb 112011


  • miles


"takata recall"I believe that I owned a defected vehicle. Since day 1 there was one electrical problem after the other. My radio comes on and off by itself, Hyundai fairfax found no problem after three visits, until I just gave up. I replace 7 - 8 blubs in my car, a airbag, and now a socket for my brake light because my came on and off, like other items in my car. It's like I have a shortage or electrical problem with my vehicle. After, they replaced the clock sensor in the steering wheel for the airbag, now my passenger door locks and unlock sometimes. Every time I complain to fairfax Hyundai, they deny that anything could be wrong with my vehicle. I understand that Hyundai desire is to meet safety regulation and customer satisfaction by providing good product. Unfortunately, things sometimes happen. It's when a corporation takes the complaints seriously and addresses the customer concerns, is what grows a business. I have yet had anyone contact me of my concerns since I had this vehicle, after making many complaints. I will appreciate someone taking this situation and my concerns seriously by contacting me with a resolution.

- Stafford, VA, USA

problem #177

Jul 162016


  • 80,335 miles
When vehicle was moving it felt like went into a coast but RPM did not increase speed slowed.. gas peddle was pushed in nothing happened when peddle was released and then pushed all functions resumed

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #176

Jun 122016


  • miles
While driving at night, the headlights will turn off when using the turn signal or turning on the high beams, I have to wiggle the headlight switch to get them to come back on. I have sent Hyundai an email concerning this problem as it is a very serious safety issue and the problem is getting worse, but of course there has been no response from Hyundai. With all of the complaints on the internet about this problem. Hyundai needs to issue a recall.

- Nixa, MO, USA

problem #175

Jun 292016


  • 113,000 miles


Car losses power in the highway under 55 miles per hour. When starting from stop or yield it does not take acceleration and almost dies. Almost got in acccident several times as the car doesnt want take gas. More like a suden stop in a trafic.. airbag light is on for more than a year. Brake lights dont work and is not the bulbs. This is becoming almost everyday problem and dealer dont have solution to the problem but I was told it is a known problem for this model. Pls do something about it.

- Minneapolis, MN, USA

problem #174

Jun 232016


  • miles
Key gets hung up stuck in ignition will not shut off at times must work gear shift shoving it back and forth to release key and pull out while doing this car can also roll out of its parking space and cause problems.... the vehicle is and was stationary but this has happened on city streets on a hill as well very dangerous. I have read up and seen this numerous times from other people as well so I know it is not just this car

- Watauga, TN, USA

problem #173

Jun 182016


  • 56,150 miles
Did some research and from what I've been reading my 2011 Hyundai Sonata gls 2.4L is affected by the "starter lever" recall. I went to turn my car on the other day and it wouldn't turn on and just made a hissing sound as I turned the key. Went to the auto parts store to have my starter tested and it failed on the diagnostic right away. I need my started fixed and replaced so my car doesn't die on the freeway! had to turn my key and try start the car at least 10 times before it would crank over.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #172

Jun 112016


  • 112,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. While driving approximately 50 mph, the engine stalled and the brakes failed without warning. The vehicle was restarted and the failure recurred. The vehicle was driven to the mechanic. The failure was diagnosed as an engine issue. The VIN was included in an unknown recall. The failure mileage was 112,000.

- Humble, TX, USA

problem #171

May 222016


  • 174,500 miles
The power steering on my 2011 Hyundai Sonata stopped working approx. 1 week ago without any advance warning. The car is of course very difficult to steer without the assistance of power steering. If my Sonata is not one of the cars covered by the recall notice very recently announced, then the recall needs to be expanded to include my vehicle. The car was stationary and I went to start the car, and the eps light was lit and I had no power steering.

- College Park, MD, USA

problem #170

May 132016


  • miles
The light for both the driver and passenger seatbelt not functioning properly will not turn off. The passenger seatbelt light stays at seatbelt off and the driver's will not turn off after the vehicle has started. Both stay on the entire time the vehicle is on.

- Columbia, MO, USA

problem #169

Apr 272016


  • 101,000 miles
While driving 45mph I experience my steering wheel shaking and it leaves the vehicle hard to control and it pulls to the right. I then started to experience my car not starting after sitting for not even 5 minutes and this has been occurring for 2 days. I took my car to the local dealership and was advised that I needed to replace the starter lever and steering coupler. Both of these are common defects of this model and has been recalled in the past. I called Hyundai today and was told that I am now responsible for the cost of the repairs regardless of what happened in the past. The repairs are going to cost me a little over $600 when the parts are plastic and wouldn't cost more than $20. A complaint has been filed with the BBB as well...this is a major safety issue on this vehicle and the manufacture needs to do a better job at building these parts.

- Lithia Springs, GA, USA

problem #168

Nov 122015


  • miles


To start with the airbag light on the drivers side will not go off even though the vehicle has never been in an accident. Additionally none of the steering wheel controls will work at all. I have looked online and these seem to be a rampant problem with the 2011 model.

- Wahiawa, HI, USA

problem #167

Apr 112016


  • 55,000 miles
When I place my car in park the car is, telling me to shift to park but I'm already in park. My car will turn off but my navigation screen stays on. Also the engine push to start/stop light won't turn off. In addition I am unable to use my favorite to lock the doors because it thinks my keys are still in the vehicle so I have to manually lock it. The car seems to stall occasionally and I have to gas it to pick up speeds and I've only had the car for two months.

- Aurora, CO, USA

problem #166

Sep 012015


  • miles
The airbag light comes on when the car is crunk and will not go off. Has been on for months. No car accidents either.

- Deland, FL, USA

problem #165

Mar 312016


  • 68,500 miles
ECM computer failed. Nothing will work. Not only undrivable, it is unstartable! had to be towed from our driveway. (many systems on this car have failed previously!!) cannot get local dealer to repair it. No one seems to know what to do. Hyundais are a joke!!

- Bastrop, TX, USA

problem #164

Mar 142016


  • 8 miles
Hand brake light doesn't stay on. If the hand brake is applied the dashboard doesn't indicate that it's on. The car still drives and driver unaware that the hand brake is on applies brake causing severe sharing and loosing control of car. The car was driven on street for 8 miles with hand brake on.

- Santa Ana, CA, USA

problem #163

Mar 162016


  • 87,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that the vehicle failed to start without warning. The contact stated that the vehicle was able to start after an hour of attempting. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 87,000.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #162

Mar 012016


  • 105,500 miles
When attempting to start the car yesterday normally, the car did not start. After reading the owners manual I discovered how to insert the smart key into a slot within the center arm rest compartment and the car starts normally. However the car cannot be locked or unlocked with the smart key anymore. The car was in the garage on the day of failure. Also when moving in reverse, and turning the steering wheel, there are clumping sounds from underneath the vehicle and that's getting louder. Unfortunately we owner's do not get any type of resolutions on these issues. Hyundai needs to step up and rectify these concerns. Ooh they got their money already....

- San Tan Valley, AZ, USA

problem #161

Feb 202016


  • 100,000 miles
Car will not start when I hit the start button. Sometimes it will and sometimes it takes 4 or 5 times to start. Car makes an electrical rattle like noise but doesn't turn over. Also, when I try to shut the car off, my display will tell me to shift to park and the radio will stay on. I've had the car in for the shift lever cable recall but I believe there is more to this. The car is doing the same thing before and after the recall fix. I commute 200 miles to work so the miles I post will be high.

- Lansing, MI, USA

problem #160

Dec 012015


  • 80,000 miles
Takata recall brake lamp staying on when turn lights on. Clicking noise under the hood. Car stalling

- Sherman, TX, USA

problem #159

Oct 022015


  • miles
Cant get light to work, have replace bulbs a few times, and have take it to an advance auto place where they have told me it's a problem with the electric work and engine not the bulb. The bulbs were fine and not burnt out. Have been having issues since last October 1st was only one head light now as of this weekend its both.

- Springfield, MA, USA

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