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Facing issues with your Kia?

Although Kia initially gained a reputation for producing inexpensive and unreliable vehicles upon its arrival in the United States in the early 2000s, it is now regarded as one of the most dependable automakers. However, Kia is not without its challenges, and here are some of the typical difficulties faced by the brand.

Facing issues with your Audi?

Audi is a high-end car manufacturer that prioritizes progress in technology and design, as well as sustainable practices. Their primary focus is to advance technological limits and pursue constant innovation. While this approach leads to continuous improvement, there may still be some glitches and issues along the way.

What are the most common Kia problems?


Some of the most common issues reported by Hyundai owners include:

  • Engine malfunction and failure
  • Transmission problems due to outdated software
  • Faulty electrical system

Most common Kia Sorento problems

Average annual repair cost: AED1950 complaints: 989

The 2016 Kia Sorento often experiences engine failure, which can be caused by a defective ignition coil or a leaky head gasket. As a result, if you own a 2016 Kia Sorento, it is recommended that you regularly inspect the head gasket for leaks.

Additionally, drivers of the Sorento have reported noisy start-ups caused by a faulty timing belt, as well as vibration originating from the A/C compressor. Moreover, owners of 2011 models have encountered a frustrating issue with the car doors not opening from the outside.

Most common Kia Optima problems

Average annual repair cost: AED1730 complaints: 686

Kia Optima drivers frequently encounter transmission issues at around 67,000 miles due to outdated transmission software. If you notice jerking or lurching when downshifting, it is recommended to take your Optima to a mechanic to update the software.

Optima owners have also reported engine malfunction and failure. Symptoms such as uncontrollable engine seizing, hesitation, stumbling misfiring, and power loss may be caused by worn-out bearings or a defective throttle position switch (TPS).

In addition to these more serious problems, there are also some minor annoyances that can occur with the Kia Optima. These include stuck door latches that won’t open from either the inside or outside, a weak alternator and dying battery, and a stiff steering wheel that vibrates aggressively.

Most common Kia Soul problems

Average annual repair cost: AED1600 complaints: 375

The Kia Soul is known for having a multitude of engine issues, such as clicking sounds while turning, knocking and ticking noises during acceleration, and occasional small engine fires. However, the two most significant engine problems for this model are no-start conditions and complete engine failure.

At around 10,000 miles, the engine of the Soul may encounter a no-start condition, and at approximately 70,000 to 80,000 miles, the engine may completely lose power. These issues should be promptly addressed by a qualified mechanic to ensure the continued performance and safety of the vehicle.

Most common Kia Sportage problems

Average annual repair cost: AED1700 complaints: 305

Similar to the other Kia models mentioned, the Kia Sportage has also experienced engine problems. Specifically, in the 2012 Sportage, drivers reported the engine shutting down while driving at high speeds, which can be particularly hazardous on highways. Kia ultimately recalled the affected vehicles and attributed the problem to an oil pan leak.

Although the Sportage has encountered other issues such as leaky fuel tanks, noisy A/C compressors, faulty key fobs, and transmission problems such as dropping out of gear, having difficulty switching between gears, or getting stuck in park, these problems pale in comparison to the severity of engine issues.

Most common Kia Forte problems

Average annual repair cost: AED1650 complaints: 234

The most frequent cause of engine problems in the Kia Forte is bad ignition coils. Symptoms such as abnormal knocking sounds, excessive stalling, shaking, idling, and misfiring can indicate engine failure.

Additionally, transmission issues are also common in the Forte, ranging from scraping noises and rough shifting or the inability to shift altogether, to debris in the transmission fluid and complete transmission failure. Unfortunately, because there is no single cause for these transmission problems, the only way to resolve them may be to replace the entire transmission.

The least reliable Kia model: the 2016 Sorento

Most common problem: Engine failure

Despite its appealing features for families, the 2016 Kia Sorento has actually received more complaints than any other Kia model currently available on the market. The most frequent and concerning issue reported is engine failure, which can be caused by a faulty ignition coil or leaking head gasket.

The most reliable Kia model: the 2016 Sportage

Most common problem: Transmission issues

Interestingly, the same year that Kia released its worst model to date, they also introduced their most dependable model, and it happens to be affordable as well! The 2016 Sportage has a starting price of AED37,500 and any potential transmission problems can be resolved with a simple transmission software update.

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Frequently Asked Questions


With MySyara, you get on-demand car care with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. As industry professionals we are able to solve any problem with your car, all the while aiming to give you the best possible car care experience. Our experienced employees have over 100 hours of training, background checks, and full insurance policies.

Service Related

Reliability depends on both the frequency of issues and the affordability of repairs. Unfortunately, Kia's most prevalent problem, engine failure, often comes with high repair costs.

With proper care and maintenance, many Kia models have been known to last for over 200,000 miles.

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