really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
76,250 miles
Total Complaints:
20 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. replace transmission (15 reports)
  2. replace transmission module (3 reports)
  3. not sure (2 reports)
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This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Hyundai dealer.

problem #20

Mar 182022

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

On March 18,2022 I left Bentley at Hyundai, after being reassured that there was nothing else wrong with my car. On March 21, 2022 my car had to go back to the dealership due to another non-starting failure. My car behaved in a manner that was terrifying. After dropping my friend home from work before I could pull out of the driveway my car started glitching it kept cutting on and off by itself when I put my foot on the brakes, it would properly cut all the way on ensuring the engine was fully started. It didn't allow me to properly shift gears, and the steering wheel was locked so I couldn't turn the wheel.

So here I am on a busy street stuck in the middle of it. I had to call a tow truck company to have my car go back to the dealership. Again dealing with the same dealership, it went days without me hearing from them on my car's situation. I had to personally call 7 times before I got an update and I was met with horrible customer service as if I was the one that caused the problem. I was notified that my car needed a new transmission and Hybrid battery. Shocked and confused I asked could something have went wrong when the new engine was put in. He immediately denies anything being wrong with the car.

Now it had to do with the new engine being put in, but I was assured my car had no further problems just a few days after receiving it after not having for 3 months. He then goes to say that the transmission and battery are not covered under the extended warranty and that I would have to pay $5,000 for it to be fixed. I honestly feel like I'm being robbed and cheated for something I didn't do. This expense has left a very bad taste in my dealing with Hyundai and Hybrid cars world wild. I have had my car for almost 3 years now and have never had an experience this bad. I will not be recommending this car to anyone with issues like these.

- Christopher T., Huntsville, US

problem #19

Mar 212022

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

On January 2,2022 while heading back home, my Hyundai Sonata Hybrid suddenly starts slowing down in the middle of the interstate. Scared and confused on why the car was no longer giving gas, I received a warning flashing "Not safe to drive", "Pull over and cut engine off". To my surprise this was this first time I had ever seen this type of warning, so I followed the instructions and pulled over. I called my insurance company and had roadside assistance come out to help me.

To my surprise and his he told me there was nothing wrong with my battery in my car, but yet the car still did would not drive. I ended up having my car towed to the Bentley at Hyundai expecting them to be able diagnose the car and fix the problem. After days of not hearing from them I finally called the shop to receive an update that's when I was told my engine was locked. I found that odd since I got my car maintenance on the regular. Luckily for me it was covered under the extended warranty. I went the next 3 months careless and finally got my car back on March 17,2022. I was told that my only remaining issue was an O2 sensor that wasn't cover under the warranty and that I had to pay for so I did and had the appointment scheduled for early March 18, 2022.

- Christopher T., Huntsville, US

problem #18

Dec 222021

Sonata Hybrid 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 101,000 miles

After having the engine replaced at 84,000 miles, my transmission failed at 101,000 miles. I took the car in for a recall and mentioned that the new engine was leaking oil and the transmission was jerking when the car was not yet warmed up. The dealer called me up and told me that I needed to have the transmission replaced for a cost of over 6,000 dollars. Fortunately I purchased the car new from a dealer that included an extended warranty of 200,000 miles or 20 years. I just have to pay the deductible of $250. The down side is that I lost use of the car for more than a month on the trans and three months on the engine replacement.

- R D., Cumming, GA, US

problem #17

Jul 222020

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

I went in for an oil change. Things went like normal. They called to get permission for a new blinker bulb and air filter. I said yes to bulb, no to air filter because I got one in April. Then the next day, I went to get groceries and I barely made it home. My car had no power and would not go over 5 miles an hour. The following day, Friday, I had it towed to Lithia. I asked Phil for a car to use while mine was in the shop, he said there were none available. Monday morning, they took my car into the shop and on Tuesday they informed it was the transmission and I needed to sign a paper for the warranty. I told Phil my husband was leaving town with his car on Thursday, he said there should be a car coming back on Wednesday.

I recheck with Phil on Wednesday evening about car, no maybe tomorrow. Thursday, I contacted Phil again, he said there should be one coming in on Friday. Friday, he informs be they finally order my transmission and that they should be getting a car in but they need to clean it so I would probably be able to get it on Monday. Monday? I also informed Phil on Friday that I have grand jury duty starting Monday and I have to be there before 8am. He never got back to me. I’m very disappointed with this service.

A week to order the part, at least 7 to 10 business days to get it, then they can start repairs. I’m sorry, it’s hard for me to understand why Lithia’s rental fleet is so low when I know that tourism in Alaska is so low, that there are tons of cars right now. I really think Phil is trying. I know it take time to get all the warranty papers but a week seems excessive. I think that Lithia Hyundai Dealers need to get bigger rental fleets. I also think they need to find out why the Sonata 2012 hybrid is having so many problems compared to their other vehicles.

- Tammy E., Anchorage, AK, US

problem #16

Apr 242019

Sonata Hybrid hybrid

  • CVT transmission
  • 112,000 miles

Transmission failed and was told it wasn't worth investing $3800. Had this been the only problem, I might have fixed, it, but there have been too many issues with it as I wrote earlier. Wouldn't you know I had just had oil changed, filter, changed and new tires.

- Barb W., Hickory, US

problem #15

Apr 222019

Sonata Hybrid 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,789 miles

I was told my 2012 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid has transmission failure and is no longer covered under warranty. I am at a little over 66,000 miles on this vehicle. No vehicle should be having transmission and engine problems this early into mileage. I had it towed to the dealership where I purchased the car from and was immediately told the transmission needs to be replaced and it would cost over $4,000 to fix it since I do not have an extended warranty.

Seems from the list of complaints on this site, that particular model should have a recall to fix the issues. My car quit in the middle of rush hour morning traffic. I had to pray and get out of the vehicle as soon as I thought it was clear to exit my vehicle.I was afraid that someone would hit me from behind, even though I had my flashers on. There was no warning of any kind beforehand.

I was driving a 2005 Hyundai XG 350 up until I purchased my current vehicle. Never had any engine or transmission problems. The vehicle had over 145,000 miles on it when I sold it. I am very disappointed in the number of complaints I see for the 2012 Hybrid and wish I had done my homework and not purchased this vehicle or at least afterwards, traded the vehicle before this happened.

- Janet M., Memphis, TN, US

problem #14

Oct 102018

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles

I really liked (notice past tense) my Hyundai Sonata Hybrid. My husband and I had even been talking to the dealer about purchasing another Hyundai vehicle model for him. Then the problems started with my car. At 96,000 miles, my transmission went out. I'd had it to the dealer complaining about a knocking in the front end. They said it was a steering column connection and it was dangerous to be driving it. They replaced the connection and tightened some other connections and said everything would be better. It was marginally better but the knocking was still there.

Then driving home from work one day, the car started jerking violently and the engine would race when I stepped on the accelerator. I was able to drive it home, but that was it. I tried to drive it to the dealer the next day, but it only made it a few miles before it was completely undrivable and I had to have it towed. The dealer said the transmission had gone out (duh), but since it was under warranty, they would replace it. I asked if this was a common problem, but the service rep said his technician checked all of Hyundai's online service issues and it was not. They were putting in a new transmission, so I figured I had a couple of years before I'd need to get a new car. BIG mistake.

I now feel as if they either tried to fix my old transmission or put in a used transmission. This "fix" only lasted about 15,000 miles and the car has again started jerking violently and the engine is racing. The dealer says it needs a new transmission and it's now out of warranty and they want $6,000. Oh, and I had to pay them a diagnostic charge for them to deliver this sad news to me. I was able to get the car home and it's sat in my driveway ever since.

Needless to say, Hyundai has now lost me as a customer, my husband as a potential customer and anyone I have the opportunity to tell this story to as potential customers. The bad will engendered by my experience with this car and with, what I perceive, as dishonest interactions with the dealer has completely negated any potential of future revenue from me going to Hyundai.

The fact that Hyundai is hiding/covering up what I've now come to understand, is a HUGE systemic issue with the transmission in their 2012 Sonata Hybrid is unethical, negligent and even dangerous. These cars should have been recalled and the transmission issues should have been corrected a long time ago. Bad move Hyundai, bad business.

- Jill P., Bealeton, VA, US

problem #13

Mar 052019

Sonata Hybrid

  • Manual transmission
  • 118,000 miles

Ask my about my Hyundai experience last week and I would have shared good thoughts. A week later I can't say that. I would not think I would have a transmission go out after only 118,000 miles. Not so sure I would recommend the product now. I have had all factory recommended services performed on time by the dealer and yet I am not faced with replacing the transmission. Not good!

- Randy K., Stanwood, WA, US

problem #12

Nov 282016

Sonata Hybrid

  • CVT transmission
  • 63,000 miles


- lurch, Snohomish, US

problem #11

Jul 012016

Sonata Hybrid 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

click to see larger images

transmission failure

This will be the first and last Hyundai. Second owner shouldn't be second best. It should still be first best.

We purchase our Hyundai Sonata Hybrid 2012 last year with only 40k miles. I was on the car lot looking for the Prius I been researching on to buy but I came across this Sonata Hybrid. I like the look and it was around the same price as the Prius I was looking to purchase. I test drove them both and like the fell of the Sonata.

My wife mainly drives it to work and back. She always complain about the lack of power and jerkiness. I kept telling her its the BLUE DRIVE TAKING OVER YOUR PEDAL. Little that I knew, THE BLUE DRIVE IS MESSING UP THE TRANNY.

We just tow the car back from Hyundai dealership and paid $140 bucks to tell us its the transmission and they can't do nothing about it. READING ALL THESE COMPLAINTS HYUNDAI WILL BE HIDING THEIR FACES REGARDING THIS ISSUE. I use to drive a Honda and I beat the car up for 1000s and 1000s of miles and never had an issue. I feel sorry for people with the same problem. second owner and low miles and issues after issues.


- Death2 L., Diamond Bar, CA, US

problem #10

Jan 232017

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,000 miles

Had the car in the Hyundai dealership in December for Oil Change, New Tires and Check-up. Complained of "Performance Problems" and "Acceleration Issues", "Please check the transimission". I asked this check be done for past several visits. "No problems found". Then, on my way to work I was losing power on hills, could not accelerate, car revved up loudly but no acceleration, then the battery started to drain very fast. Pulled over, restarted car, got battery to charge to half and then proceeded less than a quarter of mile and battery went to zero! I barely made it off the road out of traffic. I had never seen the battery go to zero before. Car Warning came on - Do not Drive, Battery Will Be Damaged! Got it towed to dealership. They replaced the transmission. I also have an extended warranty but this was covered. This is annoying because there is no warning. Even though I had symptoms of transmission issues, Hyundai Mechanics cannot seem to detect any problems until you have a catastrophic failure. The Hyundai Sonata Hybrid was a great car for awhile, now I feel it is dangerous because it seems that there are not enough diagnostics or preventative maintenance measures on the transmission. Hyundai has not perfected the hybrid technology and has created a potentially very dangerous car.

- mdhyndaiowner, Fre, MD, US

problem #9

Dec 092016

Sonata Hybrid 4cy

  • CVT transmission
  • 127,000 miles

Original owner of my car. Always maintained and kept in excellent condition. Never had any problems with my car. LOVED IT.... until....... I was driving to work and out of the blue my car would slam into gear when slowing down to turn or speeding up. I drive about 45 minutes to work, about half way there I noticed when I pressed the gas my car acted like it was in neutral. I could hear the engine revving but no power to my tires to gain speed. I could only go 40 mph..... then 15 mph. I got to work and called a tow truck.

At the dealership they told me the computer is not reading any problems but clearly there was. $150 for a transmission computer restart (no guarantees). After a failure on that it would be $4,500 on a gamble IF it were the transmission.....

Needless to say, I still owe on the car, now have to roll over thousands into a new car because I am not a gambling girl.

- Brooke S., Watertown, NY, US

problem #8

Oct 272016

Sonata Hybrid 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,952 miles

Lost of control over the car and again the dealer did not do anything.

- yousefojaber88, Amman, Jordan

problem #7

Jul 152016

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 38,000 miles

I bought my 2012 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid in November 2015 after trading in my Mustang that was nearing 120,000 miles. I have never owned a Hyundai or a Hybrid before so the jolting and jerking I felt when I drove off the lot and for the 6 months I've had it, I thought it was how the car was. I financed this car through the top most popular car dealership in my town. I also bought this car because it is fully loaded with 32,000 miles on it and being a 24 year old just starting out with financing all by myself, a very nice fully loaded car with navigation, 2 sunroofs, and heated cars was a steal I thought since the asking price was $16,000. That was definitely my perfect price range for everything it has on it! So I was happy.

Driving it only 7 months, I was pulling out of my apartments one day when I almost rear-ended the car in front of my because my car jolted so bad and lights started flashing on my dash, my brake, ABS, check engine lights came on and a screen flashing saying something about the brake system to do not drive. So I reversed, went back around to my apartments as slow as I could, parked it and shut it off. I couldn't get it in to my dealer for almost a week so I made other arrangements to get back and forth to work until I could take it in to the dealership.

After a week of sitting there, I was finally able to get it up there. I had my mom follow behind me because it was jolting and jerking so bad I didn't no what was going to happen. I get it up there and they hook it up and the dealer I bought my car through didn't have codes to fix the problem so they said it would have to be Monday morning before they could get it over to a Hyundai dealer. So 2 days go by. I get a call that my car was brought over and they're taking a look at it and will let me know what is going on. Another 2 days later I get a call from the service guy and he is telling me they fixed all the codes, however, when they test drove it, the jolting was even worse and they believe a new transmission needed to be replaced...

I was shocked. I mean, how can a 2012 with very low mileage need a new transmission? I was informed that it was covered because it still has factory warranty on it until November of this year. I am very pleased that it is covered because that is a major issue. It took a week in a half for the transmission to come in and another 3 days for them to put it in. So I have been without my car for the majority of the month of July.

So I got to thinking and was wondering if this is a common thing or just a few of us got bad luck on a car. I am very shocked and upset on what I have seen and read. Other stories just like mine only theirs were not covered! Then I go on to read not only about the transmission replacements but only their ENGINE FAILURES. I mean what is going on when making these cars? I have very much considered trading in my car now due to the fact that the engine failure scares me. Just like everyone on here, we are not paying for a car to only have this many big issues. These cars are none lasting cars! I now see why I have always seen Sonatas with very low miles in dealerships everywhere. I really love my car. It is beautiful and has great features but it is not worth the headache of worrying about constantly!

Hyundai really needs to fix this. I probably will end up trading my car in for something else before it is to late. I now am scared to drive it for the fact about the Engine failing and it not being covered under warranty. I cannot afford a new engine. Not many people can and that kind of worry shouldn't even be when you have a 2012 car. My mustang was 2008 and never needed a transmission or engine it was a hair under 120,000 miles!

It is just crazy. Best of luck to everyone though!

- bbrittany, Longview, Virgin Islands (US)

problem #6

Feb 242016

Sonata Hybrid Limited

  • CVT transmission
  • 101,666 miles

Recently I had a major transmission problem with Hyundai Sonata Hybrid (2012) car. I had experienced, infrequently over the last 6 to 8 months, the problem of accelerating between 10 and 40 miles. In the beginning it was more of annoyance on the road and ignored it. But last week it simply wouldn't accelerate. Also, it would jerk badly trying to pickup speed while I had to pull to the side of the road couple of times or go at less than 10miles per hour.

After towing it to dealer they confirmed that it was a major transmission problem and would replace it.

Cant believe a car that is 4 years old needs a new transmission. It is just over 1500 mile outside of warranty but the problem started months ago. I think Hyundai knows this is an issue with these cars but isn't doing anything about it. This was my first and will be the last Hyundai I ever own. $$4500 for a re-manufactured tranny.

- Rod A., Plano, TX, US

problem #5

Mar 092015

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles

click to see larger images

transmission failure

This car has been a problem since I purchased it used. It appears that the transmission was bad the minute I purchased. One dealer refused to cover the warranty since I was the second owner. Another dealership covered it by contacting Hyundai. I was blessed since they could have just said no. The problem is it will only be a 12 month warranty now from the date of the new transmission. I would steer clear of purchasing a pre-owned Hyundai. This car has other issues. Do not purchase the Hybrids, they are still in a beta test mode and have many problems. I cannot wait to get rid of this vehicle.

- kittymamma, ARLINGTON, TX, US

problem #4

Sep 182014

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,000 miles

Recently I had a major transmission problem with Hyundai Sonata Hybrid (2012) car. I had experienced, infrequently over the last 6 to 8 months, the problem of accelerating between 10 and 40 miles. In the beginning it was more of annoyance on the road and ignored it. But last week it simply wouldn't accelerate. Also, it would jerk badly trying to pickup speed while I had to pull to the side of the road couple of times or go at less than 10miles per hour.

After towing it to dealer they confirmed that it was a major transmission problem and would replace it under the warranty with a refurbished transmission :(. To say the least I am very disappointed with Hyundai car.

- shiva, San Ramon, CA, US

problem #3

Jul 192014

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23,200 miles

I had been experiencing a hesitation when accelerating, a lurch when hitting the brake as well as sometimes when accelerating as though the gears could not shift properly. This did not occur as often if the car was out of blue drive. This had been going on for about 4 months. I had taken it to a dealer and called a service department but none of them could explain why it might be happening and I could not make the issue repeat once I got it to the dealer. On Saturday I went to drive my car, pulled out and was going about 40 mph about 2 min after I had started the car and all of a sudden my foot was to the floor, the RMP was all the way up to red and my car was slowing down! I pulled over turned the car off and started it again, I pulled out again and it began to do the same thing but when I hit the brakes the car lurched forward worse than ever before. I pulled into a gas station cut the car off and got out to let my boyfriend try it (he had been following me in his car and did not know what was wrong). When he got in to try it he tried to put it in reverse and it would not shift at all. It was like it was still in park, but when he tried to put it back in park the car responded as though he had shifted it. Obviously something was very wrong with the transmission. We called the 24 hour roadside assistance and got towed to the nearest dealership. They mechanics spent all day taking it apart and could not find the source of the problem. The senior mechanics came in on Monday and said I would need a new transmission, that the existing transmission was "all burned up" they claim this is a rare internal problem and that a new transmission will fix the issue. All of this was covered under my warranty but it could have caused major problems had I been on the highway when this happened! Please get your car looked at for transmission issues if you car is lurching the way mine did! I will repost if the issue was not fixed with the new transmission!

- aagreen4915, Azle, TX, US

problem #2

Feb 252013

Sonata Hybrid

  • Manual transmission
  • 1,526 miles

I will never, ever purchase another Hyundai.

I had this car for a week and had to travel quite a bit in that time. The car - out of no where - started to jerk and have issues accelerating and stopping. I had to get a tow truck to take it to the dealer as it was very scary to drive.

After 2 weeks of tinkering, the dealership changed out the entire transmission. I am still having difficulty with this car. When trying to merge on the freeway, I cannot get it past about 25 miles. I have complained many times to the dealership but they can't seem to figure it out or choose to ignore it entirely when I have service.

Recently, I was charged ~180.00 to have the fuel injection service. The claim was this should help the problem. Ugh, cannot wait to get rid of this car. Unfortunately, I am upside down on the dumb thing so it will be a while.

- J S., Huntington Beach, CA, US

problem #1

May 262013

Sonata Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,000 miles

The car was not shifting out of 3rd gear. We slowed down and pulled to the shoulder of the road turning the car off and restarting. A yield light continued to flash indicating that there was a malfunction with the hybrid system. It finally started jerking as we accelerated. We made to the nearest town about 5-10 miles away. The car died and would not start. It was towed in on a Sunday evening and we were told on Monday morning that it would be late afternoon before they could look at it. I received a call from the dealer late afternoon. Their exact words were, " our tech is clueless as to what the problem is. We will have to call a technician that is specialized." I thought, WOW! We were at least 200 miles from home. They didn't have a loaner vehicle or rental and "clueless" as to what the problem was. Today, I call and check in; they tell me it's the module to the transmission. They told me they didn't know when they were going to get a part in. I would have to call back later to find out. Really ?????

- jenhodge, Calera, OK, US