fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
8,731 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 Spectra electrical problems

electrical problem

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2004 Kia Spectra Owner Comments

problem #5

Dec 272010


  • 11,000 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Kia Spectra. The contact stated that that a sizzling noise was heard coming from the dashboard. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who advised the contact that there was an electrical failure. The failure vehicle was previously repaired for the same failure, but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was not contacted. The failure mileage was 11,000 and the current mileage was 13,000.

- Detroit, MI, USA

problem #4

Apr 042006

Spectra 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,400 miles
: the contact stated while shifting gears, the transmission lurches. The dealership determined the computer is not sending the proper signals to the transmission to shift gears. The dealership is unaware of how to repair the vehicle. Updated 5/3/2006 -

- Hamburg, NY, USA

problem #3

Oct 152005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,804 miles
Problems began October 15, 2005 details of problems: 03/25/05 - A/C vents broken - dealer replaced "nozzle assy - ctr ai" 10/15/05 - check engine light is on - dealer states 'heater circuit malfunction' replaced "02 sensor assy" and reset codes 10/28/05 - check engine light is on and battery went dead (I had it jumped by aaa)- dealer cannot find problem 10/28/05 - emblem cracked on steering wheel - dealer states 'flaw in material' replaced driver side SRS bag 11/29/05 - check engine light is on - dealer states P0442 gas cap not sealing & P0455 canister not sealing - dealer replaces gas cap and canister, also orders new ECM 11/29/05 - dealer recalled: SC053 reprogram OCS seat control and SC055 Spectra air bag -dealer replaces items for recall 01/03/06 - check engine light is on - dealer states 'logic error in ECM - dealer replaced ECM 01/11/06 -check engine light is on - dealer states 'poor ground at ECM' was instructed by tech line to replace spark plugs; dealer repaired ground and replaced spark plugs 01/23/06 - engine light is on - dealer states problem at ECM - kept car for repairs 02/13/06 - dealer states that Spectra cannot be repaired at this time. They also state that another car with a similar problem has been sent back to Korea so that they can find the problem. Dealer's estimated time to repair my car 2 months from now (has been at dealer since 01/23/06 - 20 days) as stated by keith emmerman, Kia palmdale service manager. Mr. Emmerman also stated that I am required, as the Spectra owner, to come pick up my car un-repaired and drive it anyway. I have been told by the Kia dealership in palmdale, that the problem the Kia is having is in the computer. They do not know how to fix it and want me to drive it any way. The car has been in the shop several times for different problems and now 3 times for the ECM. Now they want me to pick up the car and drive it even though the problem has not been fixed and they don't know how to fix it.

- Quartz Hill, CA, USA

problem #2

Jul 272005

Spectra 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,450 miles
Speedometer will occasionally quit working while driving, sometimes will quit altogether-other times will jerk around-dealer has been unable to duplicate

- Clinton, MT, USA

problem #1

Jun 282004

Spectra 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Consumer has filed a safety complaint #6259431 with federal trade commission. Concerning automatic transmission failure on same issue as stated in ODI #10125427. Also, consumer spoke with the manufacturer Kia motors. Manufacturer said someone would be in contact with consumer within 3 days. It has been 2 weeks and consumer has not heard anything. Consumer said that transmission shifted into a lower gear for no reason. Last time vehicle was at dealer it would not go very fast, and the engine was very sluggish. Consumer said that it was like trying to pull out in a higher gear than 1st or 2nd. Gear. When driving on the highway at 70 mph the car would down shift to a low gear and it would drop to 35 mph. Dealer indicated that something was making the vehicle drop into safe mode, which caused vehicle to stay in second gear. Dealer replaced transmission control module (tcm), replaced the throttle body, and has done something to the grounds. In February the dealer replaced the transmission. Currently they replaced the tcm, added a new computer, and adjusted linkage cables for transmission. However, consumer maintained that problem became worse.

- White, GA, USA

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