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There's a lot that can go wrong in a Hyundai

We collect information from owners and combine it with data from NHTSA to give you a clearer picture of what breaks the most and in which vehicles. We even have recommendatiosn on vehicle generations to avoid. Oh, and there’s the occasional bright spot too. Emphasis on the occasional.

Problems You've Had (Or Will Have Soon)

The Theta II engine with a more appropriate logo

Theta II Engine Knocking and Siezing


The Theta II is a gasoline direct injection (GDI) engine that is well known for a lot of things and none of them are good. Bearing failure, metal debris riding on contaminated oil, piston ring defects, siezing, knocking, crying.

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Panomramic Sunroof Rattles and Explodes

Hyundai’s panoramic sunroofs have a tendency to explode under normal driving conditions, but they’re far from alone. What’s causing these giant sheets of glass to shatter without being hit? And what’s being done to prevent it from happening in the future?

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Hyundai's Inflated MPG Claims and Settlements

Hyundai Motor Group was caught cheating on their fuel economy ratings (MPG) by the EPA in 2012. MPG estimates were 1 or 2 miles higher than they should have been, which doesn’t sound like much. Except when you consider who’s picking up the tab.

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Dual Clutch Transmission Won't Accelerate

Hyundai went with a 7-speed EcoShift dual-clutch transmission for its blend of performance and fuel economy. But these transmissions tend to have two major drivability issues — hesitation off the line or added vibration. In the case of the 2016 Tucson, that hesitation off t...

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The Most Recalled Models

Hyundai generations that are better suited for the scrap yard

Recent Hyundai News

Safety Regulators Are Investigating Hyundai’s Handling of Theta II Recalls

Federal investigators are taking a look at Hyundai’s handling of Theta II engine recalls to make sure there’s no funny business going on.

NHTSA says it took action to “investigate both the timeliness and scope of Hyundai’s Theta II engine recalls, and Hyundai’s compliance with reporting requirements.”

Timely and compliant? Not if you ask this lawsuit. Or this former Hyundai engineer.

To date, nearly 1.7 million Hyundai and Kia vehicles have been recalled.

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More Recalls Because Hyundai Can’t Clear Metal Shavings From Theta II Engines

Oops, they did it again.

Hyundai says machining errors occurred when the engines were built and those errors can cause the engine bearings to wear out early. Those prematurely worn bearings will cause the engine to lock up, something a dealer will need to fix by replacing the engine short block.

Metal debris is accumulating in the crankshaft of Theta II engine during the machining process. For some reason, Hyundai can’t seem to remove all the debris before the engines are shipped.

From there it’s only a matter of time before the debris is grabbed by oil → the oil starts to clog up → the reduced flow affects the connecting rod bearings → heat and friction rise → the bearings wear out prematurely → horrible knocking noise ensue.

If they aren’t dealt with in time, the bearings will eventually fail and cause the engine to seize.

The recalled vehicles include the 2013-14 Hyundai Sonata and Santa Fe Sport.

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Former Hyundai Engineer Spills the Theta II Beans

This 2015 lawsuit accusation that Hyundai concealed defects about their Theta II engine has some teeth, according to a former Hyundai engineer.

South Korean engineer, Kim Kwang-ho, says Hyundai knew the Theta II engines have problems that cause knocking, noise and a loss of power. Kwang-ho blew the whistle by contacting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an act that caused Hyundai to petition a court to close the mouth of the engineer.

My Kwang-ho worked for the automaker for 25 years and now faces accusations of leaking company secrets by Hyundai’s disciplinary committee.

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