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.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
82,250 miles
Total Complaints:
44 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. new steering coupler (22 reports)
  2. not sure (13 reports)
  3. repair steering (4 reports)
  4. replace both axels (2 reports)
  5. replace steering column (2 reports)
  6. replace axle and steering coupler (1 reports)
2011 Hyundai Sonata steering problems

steering problem

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2011 Hyundai Sonata Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #44

Jun 302017

Sonata SE 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 135,000 miles


It's crazy, I had the right axle fixed on my car, but my steering wheel still shakes bad and wobbles. So its going to be more money to try and get it done to figure out the problem!!! It is just a big headache right now to stay the least!!

- lawandam924, Hermitage, US

problem #43

Apr 132016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,513 miles

Last year, after owning my car for less than a year, I noticed there was a horrible clicking sound when I had the car at a stop and turned the steering wheel....well this is where it all started. The feeling is known as play. That's right, not the fun kind of play, but the let's play to see how much noise you can make with your steering wheel. And that horrible clunking noise, only got worse...much worse. At first the car will only make the noise when the car is at a stop and I moved the steering wheel, but eventually it made a noise going over bumps, then on the freeway, on the street, hell, it happened ALL THE TIME. Literally sounded like either my tires were going to fly off or the axle was going to split in two. Someone once said it sounds like coffee beans in a can and that was a great description because that is exactly what it sounds like. It's the most annoying sound and it will haunt you every time you put that car in drive. Needless to say, I had just financed my car less than a year before this all happened. Did I get it fixed immediately, no. I did take it to a mechanic just to hear the noise while in park and he said it was my suspension. Well I didn't believe that so I searched online to see if anyone else was experiencing the same issue, and bam! Hundreds of consumers complaining about the same exact issue. Now this is where it gets good. Even after doing a 1 million point inspection at the dealer following a correction to a recall...they never once mentioned anything about the steering problem. Interesting right? Well...not really. See I just found out that they issued Campaign TXX7 which is an extended warranty on the steering coupling on 2/27/17 and even after taking my car to the dealership on 2/27/17 (strictly coincidental), I was not offered the extended warranty. Mind you, I made the appointment for the fix before the campaign was even released. Okay, so maybe the dealership is a little behind on what campaigns are out there. Had it not been for my neighbor, who works for Hyundai, I would have never known about the extended warranty on the coupling. The way I see it, extended warranty or recall, either are just as important and as a consumer I shouldn't have to get online every month to see if there is another campaign out there. I did contact Hyundai USA (great customer service and thank goodness they are in the USA) and spoke with their customer service about the issue and the possible extended warranty. They issued me a case number and I submitted all of my documentation online. I really hope I can receive a reimbursement on this expensive fix that many are having issue with. Mainly I wanted to get the word out that there is an extended warranty, dependent upon your VIN, and to check with Hyundai about any reimbursement or fix.

- salse, Fontana, US

problem #42

Jan 012017

Sonata 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 124,000 miles

shakes, wobbles & clicks, play in steering after recall

This is a known issue with Hyundai and they still charge to fix it. I took my car in for the 4 recalls that were out on it and the dealership said that I need a coupling. The man in the service department said that the part Hyundai used is faulty and they have made a replacement that doesn't break but they still charge $300.00+ to fix it. The part only costs about $5. My steering shakes incessantly and makes a VERY loud clicking and clanking sound while driving and it's getting worse. It's a danger to drive and is hard to control because there is so much play in the wheel. I have called Hyundai and made a complaint but haven't heard back from them yet. They told me that the warranty for the part had been extended to 100,000 miles but my part didn't break until after the 100,000 miles. It's so frustrating, why wasn't this part of the recall since it is also a danger to the driver and passengers?? If I would have known that it was subject to breaking, I would have brought it in before the 100,000 miles - Hyundai should have taken care of this as it is a KNOWN problem. I will update this as I hear back from them - I find it ubsurd that I am to go thru these hoops when it's obvious that Hyundai should be taking care of this from the beginning.

- Lisa E., Mc Kinney, TX, US

problem #41

Sep 052016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 84,500 miles


I noticed a clunking sound when turNing my steering wheel. I took it to my mechanic who determine that I needed to replace my steering column. After researching this problem, I discovered that this was a common complaint of Hyundai owners who have the same year as my car. When the car is parked, you can rock the steering wheel back & forth to hear the clunking noise. When this is done, you can tell the steering wheel was moving further than it should without the wheels moving. Also you hear and feel the clunking sound when turning the steering wheel tot he right. I drive long distance at least four times a year & need my car to be in top condition. There was a recall for certain 2011 Hyundai cars but my car was not included in the recall. I believe that all 2011 Hyundai Sonata cars should have been included. Because those of us who were not included are now experiencing the same exact problem. I believe this issue is very much a safety concern and should be a recall.

- T W., Washington, DC, USA

problem #40

Feb 222017

Sonata GLS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

I just got my axles and steering coupler replaced and that solved the problem. Very expensive though, cost about $1400. I would have fought to try and get them to fix it but I do not have the time or money to get a lawyer. I can almost promise you that you have either bad axles, steering coupler or both if your Hyundai is clicking (steering coupler) and/or wobbling (axles).

- jasminet, Kansas City, US

problem #39

Feb 222017

Sonata GLS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

Well I had done some research on here before I took the car to the dealer to be looked I suggested that it may be the steering coupler that is causing the clicking in my steering column but after I took it in the dealer mechanics notified me that it was also caused by bad axles and that those would have to be replaced as well. Total for both axles and steering couple with parts and labor is roughly $1,384.00. Luckily I bought my car cash awhile back and can afford these repairs however, it has been a significant setback in my life. Almost sad I went with the "cute" car vs. one that would have been more reliable and would have held up better....but o well.

- jasminet, Kansas City, US

problem #38

Aug 012016

Sonata SE 2.0T 2.0t

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles


My issue started with my 2011 Hyundai Sonata in August 2016. it is an issue with the steering wheel where it clicks wobbles vibrates and makes all kinds of awful noises. It has been an ongoing issue that has gotten progressively worse with the steering column. If I go 45 mph or faster the steering wheel begins to vibrate violently and sometimes it feels like I'm going to lose control. Please excuse my ignorance I'm not an auto mechanic professional so I don't know exactly what the issue is right now. I am currently waiting to hear back from the executive branch of Hyundai motor America. I have posted their contact information below. First I went to the dealership they told me this issue would not be covered by any recall. I was aware that I was outside of the warranty range so I accepted that. But what I cannot accept is the fact that there are thousands of people reporting this issue and Hyundai does not seem to care about it or at least try to offer any discounts or anything of the sort. I had to go through three different customer service departments just to get in touch with the executive branch in order to file an official complaint. none of the dealerships I spoke with were aware of this but apparently there is an open investigation on this issue. This took me having to demand to speak with a supervisor in order to get this information. I was then given a PO Box which is posted below but no phone number to call. Also the representative I spoke with was very rude and claimed there is no corporate or executive branch to speak with which was a complete lie. So I did these people's job for them and took it upon myself to find the information which I did. I have called Hyundai motor America and I was put through to a voicemail where I have left a message and I am expected to hear back within two hours. Called back again and the lady at the "front desk" stated there is no way for her to get directly in touch with someone about the issue. This is as far as I've gotten so far hopefully will hear back and I will post more. As for now I am advising everyone on this forum to contact the number below and leave a voicemail stating your issue so we can get this supposedly "open investigation" completed once and for all. I mean come on guys it's only been six years. Not to mention there has been several injuries and even a death! This is all due to Hyundai not wanting to fix a deadly problem due to THEIR improper assembly of THEIR car!

Hyundai Motor Company 10550 Talbert Ave. P.O. Box 20850 Fountain Valley, CA 92728-0850 Phones: (714) 965-3000 Websites associated with this firm: View other locations

- di1991, Phoenix, US

problem #37

Nov 172016

Sonata LS 2,4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 104,000 miles

This problem started after the recall for excessive metal at steering was done. This has got progressively worse. I see there was a problem with steering knuckle coming apart on a recall but do not think a six year old car should have a problem this bad. Will be contacting Hyundai tomorrow to find out if they have had a recall for this.

- sheidy, Schuylkill Haven, US

problem #36

Dec 162015

Sonata Limited 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

It is scary to drive the car. It feels like it's falling apart.

- Maria K., Glenview, IL, USA

problem #35

Sep 012015

Sonata SE 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 89,000 miles

pops, clicks, and shakes....can't get the vehicle over 60 mph or the steering wheel starts shimmying very bad.

- Michael M., West Monroe, USA

problem #34

Aug 012016

Sonata SE 2.4L L4 Dohc 16v

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles


My service advisor keeps saying that a recall for this issue is coming down the pipeline but it hasn't so far. It apparently is a fairly common issue because the part is plastic and breaks very easily. It's very expensive to repair (like $400). Hyundai needs to step up, issue the recall and fix the problem. It's a defective part!

- Kay C., Smyrna, GA, USA

problem #33

Nov 222016

Sonata 2.0T 2.0L Turbo

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,000 miles

As many complaints as I'm reading, the item should be a recall issue. If the steering coupling is something that simply deteriorates or is defective, it should be replaced as it is not usage issue. I have never had this issue with any other car ever, which means it's unique to this particular car and therefore should be replaced at the manufacturers expense.

- Mark R., Hawthorne, CA, US

problem #32

Oct 012016

Sonata Limited 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles

I purchased my sonata in july 2016. A click in the steering wheel turned into shaking, clicking and wobbling when driving especially over bumps. I have to turn up my music when riding its so embarrassing! It clicks when I turn and I'm told by hyundai employees its a common problem and they are surprised it hasn't been recalled. By the way I was told it was a steering coupler that needs to be replaced. Unfortunately my warranty only covers certain parts. And that is not one of them. A little over 300 unnecessary bucks will fix it smh!! I love the body style and the interior but this really makes me never want to buy a hyundai again!

- Monique F., Oakland, USA

problem #31

Jul 102015

Sonata GLS 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles

So, I first noticed the problem in July 2015. I first went to the dealership in Hooman Hyundai of Los Angeles to have a front boot repair. The dealership replaced and repaired both boots and front spindles. When I left, the clicking and noise was more noticeable than before. Obviously, they did a test drive after the repair but did nothing to find out what the noise was. Unfortunately,I waited until Mid-December because I thought my warranty was still good (only 43,000 miles) but was told I my warranty was 21 days out of warranty for their dealership to fix the problem. The manager gave me an estimate from $800 to $1900 to fix it, since they didn't know exactly what they would find. I find that hard to believe since I went online and found that there were several complaints and a cheap remedy available online. Why didn't they look into the noise in July? Second, he suggested I fix the problem and then appeal to the Hyundai Headquarters. Well, we all know how that works out! The noise has now progressed to a "clunk, shake and wooble" anytime I turn or hit a bump in the road. I am very disappointed Hyundai has not fixed the problem. I'm still waiting for a recall!

- Keith C., Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #30

Sep 132016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,100 miles

The shaking/wobbling/noise of steering wheel is huge every time I'm on the road. I'm scared if it comes off. Please help me to fix it.

- Sharon H., Buena Park, CA, USA

problem #29

Mar 012016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

Loose steering, noise when turning. Dealer told me it is out of warranty. It was not bad so I waited. Now Sept it is really annoying and noise over bumps. They tell me coupler and rack for 1400! Are the steering parts made with tinfoil?

- Jean B., Pgh, PA, USA

problem #28

Sep 062016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I was told by the Hyundai service manager to ask Hyundai if they would repair the problem because hundreds of complaints were coming in.

I was told the steering coupler had to be replaced, that it is a PLASTIC part that costs $5. I was told if I had it fixed BEFORE it breaks, it will be $200 in labor. I was told if it breaks BEFORE I can get it fixed it will cost $400 in labor. I spent over an HOUR on the phone with Hyundai Corporate who declined to assist. They said, "It it not a safety issue to have the power steering go out, so it will not be on a recall or repair."

I said that there must be a certain number of injuries or deaths to make this a "safety problem" and they said absolutely not, Hyundai does not do that. Clearly they never lost power steering in major traffic, like Atlanta, NJ, DC.

- dnelsonms, Oxford, MS, USA

problem #27

Feb 012016

Sonata Limited 2.0t

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,243 miles

I'm sure this problem happened to many 2011 Sonata owners, the steering feels loose and wobbly especially when driving over bumps. I called the dealers and they said the cost can vary from $300 to $600. If the problem got worse and I HAD to fix it before they release the recall, can I get my money back?

- alkurwee, Hilliard, OH, USA

problem #26

May 012016

Sonata SE 2.0L Turbo

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles

So I went in for the EPS recall this weekend, and upon completion I happened to mention that I was thankful for the recall as my steering wheel was "clicking" and I was experiencing a looseness ion the system. The service rep then proceeded to tell me that the recall would not fix my problem, and that what I needed was a new steering coupler - to the tune of $350. He then pulled out a large plastic container full of worn couplers that had to be replaced by our fellow Hyundai owners - my guess would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 worn couplers. Needless to say, it was readily apparent to me that the problem is significant enough to warrant an entire recall to replace tag no charge to Hyundai customers. Definitely considering trading it in for a more reliable Mazda.......

- Chris H., Tulsa, OK, USA

problem #25

Mar 012016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

Shortly after having my 2011 Sonata repaired for the steering recall, my Sonata began making a clicking noise when I turned it. Any time I got close to 80mph the steering column began shaking hard and it felt very alarming as though something bad was going to happen if I went any faster.

I took my Sonata in today for an additional three recall notices and mentioned to them the above concern and they immediately said it sounded like the coupler and knew the price of repair of hand as well ($315). I explained that it started right after the steering repair for the recall and they said that there is not a recall for this repair.

When I researched online, such as this forum, there was an overwhelming amount of complaints with the EXACT same issue and descriptions (i.e. some noting that it occurred right along with the steering recall repair). I submitted a complaint to Hyundai Motors and copied this forum as an example to just one of many forums that discuss this issue.

Here is the current link to complain online with Hyundai Motors:

- josies, St. Louis, MO, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

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