pretty bad
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
4,238 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.

2014 Kia Optima steering problems

steering problem

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2014 Kia Optima Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #34

Jun 072016


  • 26,440 miles


Driving at speeds between 60 - 85 mph on the highway, car begins to drift to the left causing driver to try to correct. This creates driver to over steer and making car take a hard swerve to the right. Constantly trying to steer and correct the car at high speeds. At these listed speeds car will not continue on a straight line. When hitting the brakes the car seems to want to go either left or right when braking at listed speeds above. Car is very dangerous driving at listed speeds, it is a constant battle to try and keep it in the designated lanes. When trying to correct the problem by adjusting left or right it the cars begins to want to lose control.

- Chattanooga, TN, USA

problem #33

Feb 022016


  • 41,620 miles
If I drive over 35-40 mph my car begins to swerve and I or my husband can't control the steering. I can't drive on the interstate because of my car swerving uncontrollably despite my constant corrections. I have almost hit countless cars because of this malfunction. Windy days are the worst, I can't drive my car over 20 mph. I've also been pulled over multiple times because of the car swerving. Mind you I just purchased my car in October 2015, I've only had this car a few months but I'm ready to get rid of it. I had the alignment checked and they said there's nothing wrong with it. I am scared for me and my family's safety. I've talked to multiple Optima owners and we all seem to have the same problem. Why is this not a recall"? how many accidents have to happen before this is a recall"

- Spring, TX, USA

problem #32

Jan 282016


  • 13,200 miles
I took my car in for an oil change to the dealer and they said there was a recall on the steering panel. I asked why I did not get a notice and they said it was not their problem that I would need to call Kia motors. I called Kia and they said they do not send them out all at once...certain times. This did not make sense I asked if one had been out to me and they were very unhelpful. Shouldn't everyone recieve notice when there a problem?

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #31

Mar 282015


  • 8,235 miles


This is my second Kia Optima, the first one was an Optima ex fully equipped. I never drove over 60 mph, so never experienced any wrongs with my steering, I was truly happy with it. When I got my second Kia just a few months back, I decided to get the sx turbo, again fully equipped. It was definitely not a wise decision, this car has many issues but I will concentrate on "steering at high speeds". while driving on the highway at a speed over 65 miles an hour the car tried to steer to the left so a 4 hour drive between miami en orlando became a workout, trying to keep the car straight. While switching lanes, the car was all over the road moving from left to right. I though maybe the tires air pressure is high, so I stopped to calibrate them, but no they were okay. Long story short I did slow down to below 60mph, but my question remains, why a turbo if you cant drive it at high speeds (over 70), I took the car back to the dealer and guess what I got back home cause they did not find anything wrong with the car. I am the driver, I know when something is wrong, I explained the issue with details to make it easier for them to find the issue and solved it. Kia if this was a survey. 1 start out of 5 I am unhappy.

- Boca Raton , FL, USA

problem #30

Jan 252015


  • 11,250 miles
It is almost impossible to drive the car straight at highway speeds. The steering sticks and in order to make the smallest correction, you have to over-correct. This results in going down the highway in an S pattern. It is not as noticeable at lower speeds. I just took a 3 hour trip on the highway and by the time I finished I was exhausted from the amount of concentration required to simply drive the car in my lane.

- Phoenix, MD, USA

problem #29

Dec 042014


  • 13,050 miles
The contact owns a 2014 Kia Optima. While driving at various speeds, the vehicle veered to the left and to the right without warning. The vehicle was taken to a dealer. The technician stated that the vehicle was operating as designed. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 13,050.

- Decatur, GA, USA

problem #28

May 012014


  • 5 miles


Hi my name is [xxx]I have 2014 Kia Optima LX. I have the car since it had 2 miles and now has 14700. What is ridiculous is the struts make clunking noise over speed bumps. The car changes lane by its self. You can hold the steering wheel center and the car goes to the left. Took it to the dealer and they said it's normal. Lies all lies. Please tell me how my struts have a small leak but not enough to do anything about it I thought it was a new car. It seems like the car was made poorly and rushed. I also feel as if Kia is lying about gas mileage again. The steering feels terrible when you are on the highway. They are a sad excuse for a car company and am completely disappointed with them. The refuse to help to acknowledge that there is an issue with the Optima steering I have a family member with a 2013 Kia Optima LX with the same steering issue. So tell me how do they have the same steering issue if the 2014 was redesigned. The car seems like it leaks air into the cabin they say other wise. I'm not a happy customer and won't be till they put a recall for mpg. Suspension. Steering and brakes. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #27

Nov 192014


  • miles
At any speed above 30 mph, the steering system has a delayed response. As you torque the steering to hold a position on a crowned road surface, the steering finally recognizes a steering input command and immediately jumps to the new position. Not only is it disconcerting, but depending on the road condition (traffic, lane width, overall speed) these "digital" jumps in positioning of the steering wheel result in significant drifting to the left or right. I have four cars, this is the only "fly by wire" car of the lot. All others have "analog" steering which enables continuous pressure to be applied to the steering system to maintain position on the road. This is an extremely unsafe situation. I have the turbo Optima. The dealer "solution" was to "take the steering off sport mode" and put in standard mode. I didn't buy a turbo vehicle to be forced to operate it like a standard Optima. The steering performance is far less in standard mode and makes the vehicle response sluggish.

- Bristow, VA, USA

problem #26

Dec 032014


  • 13,000 miles
Traveling on major highway to and from work daily car is extremely difficult to keep on the highway..car drifts left to right.constantly trying to keep car straight on the highway by turning vehicle left right....left right!!!!!stressful!!!!! I just purchased this vehicle!

- Decatur, GA, USA

problem #25

Nov 122014

Optima 4-cyl

  • 475 miles
This is not a new complaint as I see many others!!!! I purchased a Kia Optima 2014 on November 8, 2014 with 175 miles. I did test drive but not at speeds above 60 mph. The first time I drove on the interstate, at speeds 70-80 mph, I noticed I was really having to "steer" this car. First left, then right and never stopping until speeds dropped below 60 mph or so. I took it to the dealer and they checked it over and said everything was fine. Next highway drive was 90 miles each way and the car is definitely "all over the lane", so much so I actually got motion sickness and almost had to stop to vomit. When I returned home and started researching, I found a site and to my surprise, there are plenty of complaints about this exact same issue with this car. I have just notified the dealer, although from reading others experiences, I am not optimistic about Kia fixing it. I implore your organize to force Kia's management to correct this problem before there are deaths involved. It is truly an unsafe car on the interstate highway, which sadly, is the bulk of my driving.

- Wimauma, FL, USA

problem #24

Nov 132014


  • 6,200 miles


I pulled off a frontage road on to the highway into a construction zone. While driving about 25-30 mph my hazard lights clicked on when my blinker went off, I realized my power steering was gone and I was loosing control. I coasted to the side of the road and realized my engine had shut off on its own. Scared me to death! if I would have been driving faster or going around a turn I would have been in serious danger! I gathered my thoughts as to what happened, called my husband and he said to try and simply restart the car. It started on the first turn w/ no hesitation. I took the car to the dealer the following day and was told that there were no codes showing and it was probably just a glitch and they tried to send me home in it! that is a major problem to me! I believe I deserve an explanation and a fix for the problem rather than told it probably wont happen again, so don't worry about it! after spending 4 hours at the dealership they decided to keep the car for another few days and put me in a rental. I pray they find the cause since I don't feel safe until they do.

- Carterville, IL, USA

problem #23

Sep 272014


  • 300 miles
The contact owns a 2014 Kia Optima. While driving various speeds, the power steering failed without warning. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 300.

- Oak Grove , MN, USA

problem #22

Sep 082014


  • 100 miles
Vehicle drifts from side to side. Very difficult to maintain a straight line. Constant corrective steering required.

- Hilliard, OH, USA

problem #21

Sep 012014


  • 3,031 miles
The steering wanders side to side. It is a constant battle trying to keep it in a straight line.there is no "sweet spot" you constantly have to correct a little left then a little right over and over again. Also air conditioner failed twice. Car only had 200 miles on it. And again at 350 miles.

- Glouster, OH, USA

problem #20

Jun 092014

Optima 4-cyl

  • 150 miles
After purchasing a brand new Kia Optima (51 miles on it at delivery), it became very apparent there were major issues with its steering at speeds over 50 mphs. The vehicle would move left or right within a lane on its own and I would have to constantly put input into the steering wheel to keep it within a lane. My first attempt to remedy the issue was to my local dealership down the street. The dealerships first attempt was to change the steering computers setting to more of a sport mode (told ex model only has 2 steering settings) and I was out of there in 15 minutes. The change did nothing to fix the problem. I took the vehicle back to the same dealership and re-explained the steering issues I was having. After receiving a phone call from a service advisor, I was told the dealership had contacted Kia reference the problem and the dealership was told to replace the entire steering column to fix the side to side drifting issue. The steering column would have to be ordered and my brand new vehicle was at the dealership for 5 days to have a major part replaced. Upon a call from the service rep. I was told my vehicle was fixed and it was ready for pickup. It was the next day that I got the vehicle on the freeway only to find I would still drift left and right. The problem was not fixed. I called the dealership and I set up an appointment to take a drive with the mechanic who signed off on the repair. I drove with the mechanic and showed him the drifting issue was still there. He agreed it should not be doing it but I would have to wait for a pending computer fix Kia was working on. I asked when this would be available and I was told it could be 1 month or up to 8 months. Now I'm thinking about using the lemon law in my state to return the vehicle. It has less than 2,000 miles and I won't let anyone in my family drive it because its unsafe.

- Peoria, AZ, USA

problem #19

Jun 182014


  • 105 miles
The contact owns a 2014 Kia Optima. The contact stated that while driving approximately 60 mph, the vehicle would steer in opposite directions. The failure recurred on multiple occasions. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic for diagnostic testing where it was confirmed that the tire pressure was too high and that the steering wheel was overly sensitive. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 105.

- Scramento , CA, USA

problem #18

Jul 192014

Optima 4-cyl

  • 90 miles
I recently leased a 2014 Kia Optima LX and when driving home on the highway experienced the followed hazards with this vehicle: - drifting - pulling to the left and right - difficulty maintaining straight course and feeling like the car was "all over the road" - instability when driving in windy conditions - extremely sensitive steering wheel the car pulled to the left and right constantly and was worse at higher speeds. The car would drift in lanes and it was constant work to get it to go straight which seemed impossible. High gust winds made it seem like my war was going to move into the other lane. I contacted dealership and after further research by them, they said they could electronically change the mode of the power steering. There seem to be 2 modes available and one of them makes the steering flimsy and hard to handle and the other makes it feel more stable like a steering wheel should be. I would suggest anyone experiencing this problem to contact their service department and ask for the mode change. Most dealership staff don't even know this option exists and some service departments aren't familiar with it either but apparently it does exist. I would not have kept this vehicle if they couldn't have changed the power steering mode because it is simply unsafe to drive. Again, this is not a mode feature on the dashboard or a display function that some of the other Kia models have. This is specifically something that the service department needs to do electronically and they can do this on the LX model. One other feature I just discovered that I don't like and think may be an additional problem is the ridiculously low passenger seat. This makes no sense to me at all and I will be inquiring with service about it.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #17

Jun 022014


  • 100 miles
The car will not stay in its lane. It wonders and is very dangerous!

- Ocala, FL, USA

problem #16

Jul 022014

Optima 4-cyl

  • 150 miles
I recently purchased a 2014 Kia Optima for my wife, I choose this car since I already owned a 2011 Optima that I have been happy with, almost 50,000 miles. So I felt I knew what I was getting with the 2014 Optima. I drove this car for the first time last week and at highway speeds there is definitely an issue with the steering, it is challenging to keep it straight at highway speeds, when you need to make a correction to follow a curve in the road, it is as if the vehicle over shoots and then you need to correct again, causing you to move back and forth in the lane, it also feels like the steering wheel is held in position by some electromagnetic force, while driving at highway speeds and it takes extra effort to move it from this position. I am concerned since I have driven my 2011 Optima for 3 years and it does not display any of these characteristics. Kia needs to look into this before something tragic happens.

- New London, WI, USA

problem #15

Dec 042013

Optima 4-cyl

  • 26 miles
At all speeds since new - the car has had no predisposition to go straight. The steering wheel needs constant input as the car continuously wanders from side to side. The steering wheel needs excessive input to make even the slightest correction. And, when the steering does respond - it over corrects. This effect has you weaving constantly. In the time it takes to look over your shoulder to check traffic - you can be in the next lane. Rather than being able to make a smooth turn - the driving line through a turn looks more like a circular saw blade that a smooth arc. The electric assist steering has a digital feel. It's as if there are programmed digital positions that the wheel can be turned to. Anything in between those positions has you fighting the steering wheel to hold your line. It's bad driving down the freeway. It's the most dangerous when driving on narrow two-lane roads - especially when they're windy. It's subtle, but, you can feel distinct favored steering wheel positions to either side of straight ahead(example: 2 and 4 degrees to either side). It feels as if the steering clicks into those positions. When the wheel is in one of these positions - and, the arc of the turn matches the 2 or 4 degree steering angle - you can go around corners with no hands on the wheel. It feels electrically stuck in position. If a turn is not the same angle as the stuck points - you often find yourself counter-steering through the turn. Example: You're going through a 3 degree left hander. The steering wheel favors a 2 or 4 degree position. The 2 degree position has you drifting to the outside of the turn. You correct to tighten it up. The wheel corrects by going to the favored 4 degree position. You have to hold pressure on the wheel to the right(countersteer) to hold your line in a left hand turn. Unfortunately, there is no favored position for going straight. Dangerous!

- Camarillo, CA, USA

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