definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
32,078 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.

2004 Kia Optima engine problems

engine problem

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2004 Kia Optima Owner Comments

problem #8

Jul 072011


  • 80,034 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Kia Optima. The contact was driving 35 mph when the vehicle lost power. The contact was able to drive the vehicle to the dealer for diagnostic testing after receiving a jump start to the battery. The dealer confirmed that the crank shaft sensor needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was repaired. The failure and current mileages was 80,034.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #7

Feb 012011


  • 68,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Kia Optima. The contact was driving 70 mph when the vehicle stalled without warning. He was able to restart the vehicle but the failure recurred shortly after. The vehicle was not taken for diagnosis or repairs. The manufacturer was contacted who advised the contact to take the vehicle to the dealer for diagnosis. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 68,000.

- Oviedo, FL, USA

problem #6

Oct 102010

Optima 4-cyl

  • 80 miles
I was commuting. I gave my car regular oil changes and tune ups. Then the engine coils went out. The car would not go over forty. Replaced that. Heard funny noises coming from the engine. The car was at 70K at this point. The manufacturers warranty said to replace the timing belt at 110K. So I decided to hold off as that probably wasn't the problem and a manufacturer wouldn't lie to me as they are regulated by the government. Then I am driving and the car dies in the middle of a busy intersection. I get the car towed. The timing belt is changed and there are half the teeth left on the timing belt. How is the car still running you may ask? it is a magical car and is like the little train that could. Then I am driving on a busy scary mountainous highway and the car dies again at a blind corner. No check engine light but there are plenty of cars that want to hit me. The car turns back on. The fear for my life and those around me has subsided for a moment. The car is able to turn back on... somehow. The check engine light stays on. The crank sensor is the problem. The crank sensor was then fixed. This car is a hazard to have on the road. The air bag light has also been on for a year and won't go off. I have had to replace engine coils, door locks, trunk alignments and probably some other things that made me fear for my life. The speedometer also broke and said I was going 0 mph when it was really 80 mph. As of right now the car is running okay. I expect by next October that something will go wrong as that is the month that everything does with this car.

- Santa Cruz, CA, USA

problem #5

Jun 112004

Optima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 19,195 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Kia Optima. In June of 2004, the exterior lighting failed while driving at an unknown speed. In addition, the driver's side door would not lock and the check engine light consistently illuminated. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer and the exterior lighting was repaired; however, the door was not because it was not under warranty. After the repair was made, the exterior lighting continued to fail as well as the other issues. She took the vehicle back to the dealer approximately four times to repair the same failures, but the issues kept persisting. The vehicle has not been repaired since. The current mileage was 93,000 and failure mileage was 19,195. Updated 10/05/08 the headlights and brake lights were replaced several times. The dimmre switch also failed. Updated 11/06/08.

- Gallatin, TN, USA

problem #4

May 152008

Optima 4-cyl

  • 66,600 miles
I was on my way to work and my car just stopped running while I was driving on the highway. I got it towed, it is the crankshaft position sensor, the cost to repair $460. I have done some research on the internet and many people have had this problem with this year. Also earlier models have been recalled.

- Grand Haven, MI, USA

problem #3

Aug 102006

Optima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,600 miles
: the contact stated the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle restarted and the dealership was not contacted. Updated 08/29/06.

- La Mesa, CA, USA

problem #2

Mar 012004

Optima 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 7,000 miles
I purchased a brand new 2004 Kia Optima and paid in full. I purchased for the 10 yr warranty and extended warranty I bought. The A/C has always overheated, car seats in the locked positionmoving while driving out of their position, locks malfunctioning when no one is touching them, transmission jumping. Various other problems. The big bell road Kia in phoenix, located at 2121 East bell road,

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #1

Jul 132004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 114 miles
While driving 35 mph vehicle suddenly decelerated and would not go over 20 mph. No impact reported. As a result, the check engine signal light stayed on.

- Belleville, IL, USA

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