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 1 of 7)

problem #129

Jun 012016


  • 75,000 miles


Takata recall my airbag light is on. My VIN number does not come up on the recall list. I live in hot climate, miami, fl and my car is 6 years old. I am concerned that my vehicle may be at risk.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #128

Dec 022016


  • miles
Airbag light on dash came on all the sudden and won't turn off also passenger airbag light blinks non stop unless belt is locked. Light is on regardless of stationary, moving.

- Beaverton, OR, USA

problem #127

Jan 052017


  • 21,900 miles
While entering a driveway on 1/5/2017, my vehicle was struck on the right rear. Speed was 4-5 mph, with no front collision. However, front air bag activated and instantly caught fire and deflated causing head to strike steering wheel. Rear passenger air bags did not activate on either side of vehicle. Burn hole in front air bag is the size of a silver dollar.

- Brick, NJ, USA

problem #126

Jan 012017


  • miles


Airbag B1382 side airbag front passenger resistance too high

- Chincoteague, VA, USA

problem #125

Nov 032016


  • 102,000 miles
Air bag light is constantly on and car has not been in any accidents. Concerned that airbag will not properly function if needed. Hyundai wants between $ 400 and $ 900 to fix issue. This is a major safety issue and several other 2011 Hyundai Sonata owners have the same problem.

- Davie, FL, USA

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problem #124

Dec 012016


  • miles
Airbag light is coming on and passenger seat doesn't seem like its sensing a person in the passenger seat. Vehicle has not been in an accident.

- Goodyear, AZ, USA

problem #123

Oct 072016


  • 95,538 miles


After taking my car to a dealer for oil change and tire rotation, the passenger side airbag light came on and it's remained on for several weeks.

- Odenton, MD, USA

problem #122

Jul 132016


  • miles
When I accelerate on the freeway, engine stalls. Goes from 55 to zero and when I pump vigoursly in the gas to make it go faster, it will not. I almost was slammed in the rear from other cars in the freeway. Plus air bag light will not go off. Plus knock knock noise heard in the engine.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #121

Jul 012016


  • 78,000 miles
Air bag light remains on all the time.

- Dothan, AL, USA

problem #120

Oct 182010


  • 77,786 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that the air bag warning indicator remained illuminated. The dealer was notified and provided no specific diagnosis. In addition, the contact heard an abnormal noise, the key was difficult to turn in the ignition, the low beams shorted, and the dealer replaced the housing for the brake lights. There were additional repairs due to the multiple failures. The manufacturer was notified of the failures and provided no solution. The VIN was also included in NHTSA campaign numbers: 16V190000 (steering), 15V759000 (service brakes, hydraulic), and 15V568000 (engine). The approximate failure mileage was 77,786.

- Long Beach, CA, USA

problem #119

Oct 292016


  • miles


I brought my car in for this recall and now months later the airbag light indicates a problem. I was told that seat would need to be replaced for $1200. This car has been nothing but problems

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #118

Jul 282016

Sonata 4-cyl

  • miles
My air bag light illuminates every time I turn my car on and will not go off! this happened right after it had repairs on all the other recalls on this vehicle including having my engine totally replaced. I see so many other complaints about the air bag lights not going off why has this issue not been recalled yet??

- Utica, NY, USA

problem #117

Oct 202016


  • 76,170 miles
On multiple occasions my vehicle has been serviced by a Hyundai dealership in South Florida. After "repairing" the air bag signal, it has reappeared on at least four trips to the dealer. After multiple repair (including the replacement of the cables) the following issues still occur; 1) the oil indicator lights and the tachometer lights go on and off periodically, 2) the air conditioner goes off, the comes back again in few minutes, 3) the low air light comes for my tires, 4) engine light, and 5) speedometer indicator went up and down with the vehicle traveling at the same speed. The vehicle is close to 76,000 miles. The above indicated events occurred primarily while driving in city streets. However, some of them were experienced in highway traffic.

- Hollywood, FL, USA

problem #116

Oct 122016

Sonata 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that the air bag warning indicator remained illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified. The failure mileage was 46,000. Updated 01/05/17 the consumer stated the dealer repaired the air bag on December 13, 2016. The consumer had to pay for the repairs. Updated 01/12/17.

- Vero Beach, FL, USA

problem #115

Apr 302016


  • 79,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Hyundai Sonata. The contact stated that the air bag indicator illuminated following a recall repair for the steering column. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the illumination was due to a disconnected part. The technician stated that there would be a charge to reconnect the part. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 79,000.

- Plano, TX, USA

problem #114

Apr 012016


  • miles
Takata recall. I'm having the same issue as everyone else. The sound of something loose in the steering column and clunking noise has become horrible. Regardless of whether the car is in motion or at a stand still, I can move the steering wheel and hear the noise. I checked the year of production of my vehicle and it doesn't fall under the current recall; however, it seems a little irresponsible of Hyundai to not recall all vehicles that are experiencing the same issue. It is a safety hazard not just a nuisance. This has been happening for a few months now and has only become worse with time. I will be contacting Hyundai to see what can be done. In the instance they refuse to service the vehicle under the current warranty I will be contacting an attorney. Safety hazards cannot be ignored.

- Fontana, CA, USA

problem #113

Oct 162016


  • miles
Airbag light suddenly came on and will not go off, stays on continuslely. Car is up for inspection in a few months and will not pass a safety inspection. Have researched this online and found over 100 complaints for this problem. This is a major safety issue as if I am in an accident the airbag will not deploy.(or worse may happen)

- St. Louis, MO, USA

problem #112

Aug 242016


  • 89,500 miles
Airbag light on dash board turned on few months ago, the car has never involved in any kind of accident. It is 2011 Sonata and has never been in an accident. The dash board light turned on few months ago after 5 1/2 years of owning the car. I took to the dealer and they ask for $160 for diagnostic and that amount will apply to the cost of fixing the problem if I decides to go ahead of fixing the airbag lighting problem, the dealer gave a rough estimate between $900 to $1200 to fix this airbag issues. They also said the the airbag only warranty for 6 years or 60,000 miles. I though the airbag should be 10 years and 100,000 miles as Hyundai always advertised that. I searched on the web and there are a recall on airbag for elantra but not Sonata. It is definitely a manufacture defected because this is the original airbag and the car has never been in any kind of accident as I mentioned above. I seemed like the 10/100,000 warranty is just for advertisement purpose and they are not really stand behind their product or quality. Btw - I exchanged some email with Hyundai corporation but it did not go anywhere.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #111

Oct 022016


  • 0 miles
Airbag light will not turn off once the vehicle is started. This issue caused me to fail my car inspection because it is a hazard if I was to get in an accident and the airbag does not deploy. The could lead to fatal results.

- Suffolk, VA, USA

problem #110

Jul 052016


  • 8,070,040 miles
Air bag light illuminated for no reason and car has not been in any accidents. Took it in to dealer and paid &100. For them to diagnose code B1346 driver airbag resistance too high. Monitor current data and resistance on driver airbag is at 10 ohms and when moving steering wheel it goes into fail mode. Recommend new clock spring a's step one of repair. To complete step one will cost and additional $331. I have read about hundreds of clock spring being faulty on this model and would appreciate an investigation.

- Oceanside, CA, USA

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