really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
20,827 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 Sorento transmission problems

transmission problem

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2004 Kia Sorento Owner Comments

problem #5

Oct 202003

Sorento 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 500 miles


Well, there is an annoying, over time driven hissing sibilant noise coming from under the Kia Sorento 2004 vehicle I went to Kia, and complaint about it. They claimed that they heard the noise, but it was not enough loud for them to fix the problem. In my life I never had a car that made such noise. Could something be done about it?

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #4

Apr 292007

Sorento 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,135 miles
Transmission overheated causing overflow of atf onto exhaust manifold igniting a fire.

- Chugiak, AK, USA

problem #3

Feb 032007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles
I purchased a 2004 Kia Sorento two years ago. It was not long before I began to experience numerous problems with my vehicle. Tail lights/brake lights burning out frequently which is a major safety issue since I deliver rural usda mail. Now my transmission is broken!! Kia-duluth asked if I had had the transmission flushed at the specified mileage and that they will need verification of this. (I knew immediately their objective was to not honor their warranty (10 years/100,000 mile warranty if I had not flushed the transmission). I faxed them the receipt indicating the transmission had been flushed. I contacted Kia-duluth the following day because I had not heard from them. He said he had not heard back from Kia yet to authorize the repair. This vehicle has caused me so much lost work time, stress and has been emotionally draining for the past two years. Kia's deceptive advertising - I believed that since Kia was offering a 10 year/100,000 mile warranty, their vehicle must be really good. Boy was I wrong! Kia is building vehicles with defective parts and materials and has set-up their warranty plan to be able to void them from having to honor their warranty plan and having any responsibility. For further complaints on Kia vehicles, please contact the better business bureau and attorney general offices across the country and you will find numerous complaints. Numerous complaints by consumers are also located at the following websites: www.my3cents.com and www.consumeraffairs.com. Kia needs to be investigated and put a stop to their scamming and defrauding the consumer and before someone gets seriously hurt or killed due to numerous defective parts in their vehicles.

- Iron, MN, USA

problem #2

May 182004

Sorento 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles
Since buying my Sorento in February 2004, I have noticed that the car sometimes has to "think" before going into gear and there is no predictability as to when this will happen. In example I was in the center lane merging into traffic when the car just would not get going it hesitates and then drops into gear. I have taken the car in and the service manager said that he has had several complaints like mine but there is nothing he could do to help. He said that it seems to be the combination of the engine and transmission and that since it seems to be just a characteristic of the car, there would be nothing that Kia would do. I am concerned that this vehicle can cause an accident under normal driving conditions. Since it is a 6 cylinder, I would believe that it should get up and go when you need it. I always need to be aware that I cannot rely on the car to get in gear quickly. This is unsatisfactory, and I have never had a vehicle react in such a way.

- Metamora, MI, USA

problem #1

Jul 092004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,500 miles
The consumer approached a driveway which had a slight incline. The consumer got out of the vehicle with the engine still running and the driver's door opened. At least two minutes later, a click was heard and the vehicle rolled backwards until it hit a tree. A Kia representative came three days later, inspected the vehicle, and claimed no responsibility.

- Union, SC, USA

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