pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
55,800 miles
Total Complaints:
7 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (5 reports)
  2. repair steering (2 reports)
2012 Kia Optima steering problems

steering problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2012 Kia Optima:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2012 Kia Optima Owner Comments

problem #7

Jan 022019

Optima ES 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,500 miles


This is the 5th recall or significant problem with my 2012 Kia. The steering column just became very loose and is clicking while turning and will shake going over 60mph.

- alyshamarie1, West Chester, US

problem #6

Aug 082016

Optima EX 4s

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,478 miles

My car started to make these clicking sounds when I would turn my steering wheel while driving. I guess I just ignored the sounds or didn't think that it was anything major. As time has passed, the sound has gotten louder and my steering wheel/column feels very loose and unsafe while I'm driving.

I looked online to see if this was something that has been recalled by Kia, only to find out there has not been a recall on this issue even though there already has been several complaints to Kia with the exact/same complaint.

After finding out that others have complained about the same issue, I called the service department at the dealership that I take my car for service. I told them of my problem and asked if this is something that the manufacture would repair or is this something that I am supposed to repair on my own? The person told me that he would take my name and number and talk to the service manager and he would get back with me. Although it's only been four days I still have not heard from the Kia service manager to let me what my options are.

It's obvious that the steering columns in these vehicles are all flawed, but I am assuming that since there has not been any death surrounding this issue, Kia is not taking the responsibility for this problem.

- Alice G., Columbia, SC, US

problem #5

Aug 102015


  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles

2012 Kia Optima. Steering shakes, rattles and clicks when turning the steering wheel. This happens when in park or in motion. Going over a speed bump at minimum speed and even rail road tracks. This is very annoying and from what the dealership is saying it is very expensive.

- Cecilia B., FAyetteville, NC, US

problem #4

Feb 112016

Optima EX 3.2L

  • Manual transmission
  • 76,020 miles


I took my car to get a oil change and the guy that was moving the car was so worried about the steering. He stated that I needed to get it serviced at the Kia dealership ASAP. The steering seems to be clicking and when I hit a small dip or pothole in the road it clicks. I was told that this is not covered by the warranty with the vehicle which I think is crazy. I could see if it was something that I did I would take care of that repair. However there are a lot of other people that are having this same problem. I'm really thinking about trading in this vehicle and moving on to someone who does take care of their cars and customers.

- mlove, Jacksonville, NC, US

problem #3

Jan 132016

Optima LX 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 82,217 miles

very lot of play in steering wheel. said it was not covered by warranty. Should have been covered by warranty because all of them have this problem. I had to pay the dealer $222.00 to fix it.

- Lee G., Davenport, FL, US

problem #2

Mar 072016

Optima SX 2.0t

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles

So like everyone else here, the issues with the Electronic Power Steering persists. The local dealer that I went to in Charlotte, NC said that it was a "sport mode" issue with the computer and they would put it in "regular mode" for free to fix it. It certainly did nothing to correct the issue. The car feels like it wanders while driving on the highway and I have to CONSTANTLY have to readjust the steering. I have to be constantly vigilant in steering and it is really starting to concern me. I have a baby on the way and I'm a little freaked out about putting her in my car. This is literally the only problem that I've ever had with my KIA. I absolutely love the car, except for this one issue.

- Mike K., Melbourne, FL, US

problem #1

Oct 152012

Optima EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 3,200 miles

I first noticed this issue 2 months after buying the car in June 2012. Here's the problem: When driving over 50mph, the car pulls to the left, when corrected, it pulls to the right; It really hard to keep this car in a straight line. I first reported this issue to my local dealer during the first service visit and 3 more times after that. Their response is always the same "car performance is as specified by manufacturer" or "we couldn't find anything wrong with it" I thought I was going crazy but my son couldn't belive how loose the steering was when he drove it. He's a mechanic himself.

Today, 3 years later and the issue is way worse. Now I hear a loud clicking noise coming from the steering column every time I turn the wheel.

The situation is so bad I'm scared to drive my car on the highway. It feels like I will lose control over the vehicle while driving it. I took it to the shop next to my house and they said it would cost over $1500 to replace the steering column. Based on my experience, it's always more than the initial quote.

I love this car but I'm extremely unhappy and disappointed at this time. Please help!

- manun, Naples, FL, US

Not what you are looking for?