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:
17 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
18 / 2
Average Mileage:
110,364 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 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2011 Hyundai Sonata Owner Comments (Page 4 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #69

Jul 012016


  • miles


Air bag light stays on. Dealer says it's a faulty clock spring and will cost $450 for parts and labor. This can be deadly if in a crash and air bags don't deploy!

- Mcdonough, GA, USA

problem #68

Dec 102015


  • 96,000 miles
Airbag light on instrument cluster came on during vehicle startup, while stationary, during its built-in test. Mileage on vehicle was approximately 96,000 miles. Took to dealer for diagnosis. Result was, "...not covered under warranty, but we can fix it for $1,000". research indicates this is a systemic problem for this vehicle.

- Crestview, FL, USA

problem #67

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 #66

Jul 152016


  • 5 miles


The air bag light has recently illuminated and stays on. There is nothing obstructing the wires under the seats and the vehicle has not been in a crash. The light illuminated while driving down the road and has remained on. Contacted the dealership and was informed that airbags and sensors are only covered under the first 5 years and 60,000 miles. Based on the recent plethora of recalls on the 2011 Hyundai Sonata and after reading countless complaints online with other vehicles of the same make and model having the exact same issues, I am concerned that not only are the airbags covered under a limited warranty, but that this may be another possible recall in the long line of recalls for the Hyundai Sonata. I do not feel that this is a safe car for anyone and feel that the airbag light/deactivation could result in deaths should Hyundai not cover the airbags longer and for individuals who may not be able to afford the repair.

- Thompsons Station, TN, USA

problem #65

Jul 112016


  • 85,000 miles
Air bag light is on and will not turn off. I was advised by the dealership that I have to pay $450 to replace a spring inside the steering column for the air bags to deploy. I have never been in an accident. This is frustrating and should be considered a manufacture defect.

- Mesquite, TX, USA

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problem #64

Jul 112016


  • 90,000 miles
Airbag warning light came on and will not go off.

- Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #63

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 #62

May 052016


  • 112,000 miles
Air bag light is on indicating something is wrong, this is a safety issue not an wear and tear problem. I have replace several bulbs in my vehicle each year for five years. Every bulb that I have went out indicating a electrical problem.

- Stafford, VA, USA

problem #61

Jun 202016


  • 10 miles
My air bag light wont go off. Many people on line have the same problem. You should make this a recall. It stays on the dashboard. Manycar owners of Sonata are complaining about this.

- Hollywood, FL, USA

problem #60

Apr 012016


  • miles
Airbag light in the dash randomly came on and will not turn off. The car was never hit, never in an accident or involved in any incident to cause the light to come on. The light has remained on for 2 months now and will not turn off, meaning if I were in an accident the airbags will not deploy.

- Marietta, GA, USA

problem #59

Jun 142016


  • 63,000 miles


"takata recall". the airbag light stays on after starting car. Took the car to jenkins Hyundai of leesburg fl. After about 35-45 minutes later the service man came back and said the problem is a clock spring that needs to be replaced. They said it is not under warranty and would cost us $350 to fix it. He said that if it is not fixed the airbags will not deploy during a crash. I don't understand why I have to pay to fix a part that is obviously defective. Hyundai has had many problems with airbags over the years. Takata airbags have caused many injuries and deaths because of defects. Why Hyundai even uses takata airbags is beyond me (unless they manufacture them). I am not in a financial position to fix the problem right now or buy another car. If I continue to drive the car and I am in a crash, I might not survive because of Hyundai's refusal to cover the cost of replacing a part that was more than likely defective when the car was built. There is no way that I can believe it is normal wear and tear on the part, the airbags have never been deployed. Please expedite this complaint as I am now driving a vehicle that I feel is unsafe.

- The Villages, FL, USA

problem #58

May 102016


  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. Whenever the vehicle was started, the SRS and "passenger off" lights remained illuminated on the instrument panel. The failure was not diagnosed and the manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 60,000. The VIN was not provided.

- Reston, VA, USA

problem #57

Mar 162016


  • miles
Purchased car on 3/8/2016, the car made noises while turning. Both shaft assembly replaced, parts $749.70, labor $150. Our daughter was given the car on 3/12/2016, on 3/16/2016 while driving the eps light illuminated, power steering was loss. Hyundai dealership diagnosed and replaced steering column and column assembly, cost $1701.18. The passenger airbag has come out on two occasions. The dealership in charlottesville, va pushed it back in. On 6/11/2016, passenger airbag came out while driving. (husband pushed it back in, however, I don't feel our daughter and her passengers are safe). On 6/11/2016, while trying to drive the car, put the gear into D and the car moved backwards. Turn the car off and shifted into D(it worked). This according to our daughter, this has occurred on several occasions. Interior lighting has to be manually manipulated to turn them off.

- Glen Allen, VA, USA

problem #56

May 252016


  • 110,000 miles
The airbag warning lights stays on.

- Stafford, VA, USA

problem #55

Aug 012015


  • 63,000 miles
I purchased a 2011 Hyundai Sonata on 6/15/2015 with 55000 miles on it. Since then, I've had numerous recalls on my car. The issue I have now is the airbag light is on in the car dashboard. Due to loss of wages from other recalls I have not been able to afford to get my airbag light checked. The car was not in motion when the light came on and I have never been in a car accident. The light came on around the 63000 mile mark and I have no warranty to get the car fixed. I've read online about numerous amount of complaints about their same car have the same issue as me. With all the complaints I've read I'm surprised there hasn't been an investigation or recall yet for this issue. It's a huge safety concern and is going to get me or somebody else driving a 2011 Hyundai Sonata killed if nothing is done. I've had atleast 5 other recalls on this car which just gives me more reasons to believe that this is the manufacturers fault. I just simply ask that you look into this matter and hopefully get it resolved. I've had the airbag light on now for 10 months and don't know what I can do about it. Please help.

- Livermore, CA, USA

problem #54

May 152016


  • 79,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 45 mph, the air bag warning indicator illuminated continuously. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 79,000.

- Wesley Chapel, FL, USA

problem #53

Apr 182016


  • 73,000 miles
Air bag light is on and does not go off. I went to the Hyundai dealership to fix it, but they said they have to replace two parts and it will cost me about $1200. I googled it and I found out there are many people who drive Sonata have same issue. If it happens before 60000 miles, warranty covers it, unfortunately my Sonata runs about 73000 miles. There are many Sonata owners have same issue so I believe there is something wrong with Sonata since they were made. Please fix this problem, so many Sonata owners do not have to pay their money for it.

- Lewisville, TX, USA

problem #52

May 212016


  • 115,000 miles
The airbag light on the dashboard remains illuminated. The car was not involved in an accident prior to the light turning on. The airbags may not deploy in the event of a collision.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #51

May 192016


  • 36,000 miles
The light for the air bag is lit up on my dashboard

- Covina, CA, USA

problem #50

May 132016


  • miles
Airbag light came on in the dashboard several days ago, and it stays on. It won't go off. Car has never been in an accident, and light came on when I started the car several days ago and it has been on ever since. Based on research online, it seems like this is not uncommon for this model.

- Garden Grove, CA, USA

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