definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
23,333 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.

2012 Kia Optima Hybrid brakes problems

brakes problem

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

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

2012 Kia Optima Hybrid Owner Comments

problem #3

Jul 272015

Optima Hybrid

  • 35,000 miles


I was approaching a stop sign traveling 30 mph. When applying the brakes to slow down they were initially working and I was reducing speed, however suddenly I heard a very loud crunching/grinding noise and I lost all brake functionality. To stop the vehicle I had to place the vehicle in park. If a car was in front of me I would have crashed into it. Additionally, because I lost brake functionality I went into the intersection. If cars were crossing the intersection or if a person was crossing the street I would have crashed into them. I turned off the car and got out and checked the vehicle and was unable to find anything wrong. Since I was in the intersection I turned the vehicle back on and the brakes seemd to be working again. The vehicle was towed to the Kia dealer. The Kia dealer had the car for three days. Per the Kia technician they inspected the brakes and the hybrid regenerative braking system and were unable to find any problems or recreate the issue. Per the Kia technician they exhausted all of their options and were unable to find any issues and returned the car to me. Additionally, I contacted Kia customer service and they stated that if they were unable to recreate the problem there is nothing they could do. While researching this issue I found that two other people have reported the same problem to the NHTSA (NHTSA id 10638311, 10650553). One person crashed because of the issue and they reported that the issues have sporadically happened multiple times. I believe that there is a defect in the hybrid braking system that causes the driver to sporadically lose all brake functionality. I no longer feel safe driving this vehicle and fear that at any point in time I can lose all brake functionality and crash, causing an injury or death to myself or another person.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #2

Oct 172014

Optima Hybrid

  • 33,000 miles
Kia Optima hybrid system warning no brakes! unsafe car! we have the same problem as someone else on this site. Oct 16th 2014 we were pulling out of our driveway and received a warning on the display saying "hybrid system warning slow down and come to a stop. Check brakes. Also the brake pedal had depressed all the way to the floor and there was a grinding sound. Unlike a low pad sound but the sound of gears not engaging. Also there were no brakes at all, the car wouldn't stop. We turned the car off and then on again and it was the same error message and same pedal situation. So we left the car where it was. After a few hours we tried to start the car again, but this time it was fine, no error message, brakes worked again. So we took it to our Kia dealer ship here in honolulu. After a diagnostic we received a report a few hours later. The report said that the car checked out fine and there were no error codes stored. The service advisor said this is an intermittent problem that they could not duplicate. We took the car home and did nt feel safe driving it as we thought what if this happens again. We then brought the car back to Kia and told them how we felt. They said they did multiple test and after one week of testing could not duplicate the problem. The service manager was very angry with us saying we need to pick up our car and return the loaner. After I hung up I did my own research on the internet and found this identical symptoms on another complaint here but this person had got into an accident. I forwarded this link to Kia, now they are so nice to us because I think they now see the danger. But they still have our car and can't figure out what is wrong. We are very fearful that this car is dangerous and will not put our kids at risk in this Kia with no brakes! be warned this car has brake problems and one person has already crashed!

- Kaneohe, HI, USA

problem #1

Aug 312012

Optima Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 2,000 miles
I have had 2 issues: My uvo system has malfunctioned multiple times and my system is going to be replaced again today. I have had brake issues, my master cylinder was replaced and its going back in today for brakes. Now my car is pulling to the left! I have 25,000 miles on this car!

- Mooresville, NC, USA

Not what you are looking for?