really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
28,725 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 Kia Optima brakes problems

brakes problem

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2011 Kia Optima Owner Comments

problem #4

Nov 262015


  • 72,000 miles


If there is light wheel spin upon takeoff (especially turning and accelerating, such as pulling out of a parking lot onto a road) it causes car to lose power for a few seconds. When this happens accelerator can be depressed all the way to floor and vehicle does not have power and will not accelerate. Car also activates anti-lock brakes when lightly pressing the brake pedal while driving over a small bump at speeds greater than 25 mph. These symptoms occur with stability control engaged (default setting when car is turned on) stability control / traction control is overly sensitive, and can cause an accident.

- Ceres, CA, USA

problem #3

Apr 252013

Optima 4-cyl

  • 28,500 miles
On April 25th, 2013, I drove from the atlanta area to shannon, ga. Near adairsville, ga. I stopped a the gate put the car in park, set the brake. Before I could get out the car surged forward smashing the gate. I hit the brake, backed it up, put it in park, set the brake and again before I could get out it surged forward. This time when I backed up put it in park I turned off the motor. Jumping forward in my story, I called Kia and found out the car was on recall. I looked it up on the internet only to see the notices would not be sent out until May 2013. Kia. Is replacing the part but will not fix the front end damage. They told me to call my insurance company. Kia ran some test and said it showed nothing wrong with my car. I would have been run down and killed or in the hospital. All I ask is for them to fix the front end of my car and replace the gate. They still have my car so the mileage is and estimate. I did use cruse control. Case #[xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Riverdale, GA, USA

problem #2

Jun 152012

Optima 4-cyl

  • 9,000 miles
We bought our car last year, 5 months after we got the car, when I was driving it the vehicle dynamic control (vdc) light turn on and the car shaking very bad and we can not handle the car right and the brake its not working well, its very very scary. The only thing that we can do we turn the vdc light off, its gonna be ok for couple days, and again it happens. After that I took the car to fairfax Kia in Virginia they didn't believe me and they said when they test drive the car it didn't happened to them, so it happens for me almost 7 times and every time they when I took it back to the service they said the same thing. I have no idea what should I do, somebody needs to fix this problem, if something happened to me what should I do? Kia motor in responsible for that.

- White Plains , MD, USA

problem #1

Nov 172011


  • 5,400 miles
Kia Optima LX 2011 was purchased brand new at 4 miles in odometer. Problem 1 less than a month: Steering veering to the left an right. Had to steer this car to track straight. The dealer performed minor alignment in October. Car continues to veer left and right. Took car back to the dealer. The tech stated the front end off by 2 degrees and stated he performed the adjustment. The steering problem not fixed. Problem #2: car was parked with fuel reading 42 miles to empty. Returned to start car. Will not crank after numerous attempts. Towed the car to dealer. Car cranked upon de-tow at the location. But still left the car for why it will not crank in the first place. Returned 4 days later. I was advised that the car was empty of gasoline, even when fuel reader clearly indicated 42 miles to empty. Kia paid for rental for 4 days ($100). I was further advised that the fuel regulator was replaced and on back order. The steering problems and the stalling issues are significant public safety concerns since the lanes, arterial roads and highways that I have to drive daily are congested.

- Spring, TX, USA

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