Kia Optima Kia Optima

We are 107,000+ car owners sharing real-world car information.

Join Us

Kia Optima repairs by problem area

Engine (24%)

Transmission and Drivetrain (8%)

Brakes and Traction Control (8%)

Suspension and Steering (11%)

Electrical and Air Conditioning (31%)

Paint, Rust, Leaks, Rattles, and Trim (13%)

Other (6%)

Select a problem area

Show all problems

Need advice about specific Kia Optima problems?

Chart based on 416 repairs.
See TSBs and recalls for the Kia Optima.

Kia Optima transmission repair cost distribution

$2500+ (10%)

$1000 - $2499 (10%)

$500 - $999 (10%)

$100 - $499 (33%)

< $100 (37%)

Chart based on 30 repair trips. The repair cost chart excludes repairs made under warranty, do-it-yourself repairs, and repair trips that include maintenance.

2014 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

192-horsepower 2.4L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

1000 mi solenoid in transmission went bad car didn't shift right. 

Return to top

2013 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

turbocharged 274hp 2.0L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

16000 mi Noticed transmission fluid leaking. Took the car in, and they ended up having to replace the entire transmission due to a misaligned bushing. 
11000 mi I was occasionally experiencing rough/clunky shifts a few days before, and just prior to the check engine light coming on. Dropped it off at the dealer and was informed that they had to replace the trans oil temp sensor. 

Return to top

2013 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

200-horsepower 2.4L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

1000 mi Transmission went into limp mode. No codes set. Problem resolved by rebooting (restarting) car. Has not recurred after 1,300 driven. Happened at 216 miles. 

Return to top

2013 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

159-horsepower 2.4L I4 Hybrid 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

79000 mi After front bearing replacement, bigger problem with transmission was identified. Transmission was replaced. 
29000 mi

US $93
Transmission not shifting properly, lag at acceleration 

Return to top

2012 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

turbocharged 274hp 2.0L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

42000 mi Transmission temperature sensor failed 
52000 mi Transmission position sensor switch failed, causing vehicle not start. 
22000 mi sensor went bad causing shifting problem 
23300 mi Transmission heater sensor failed and was replaced under warranty 

Return to top

2012 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

200-horsepower 2.4L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

24000 mi Transmission sensor 
52700 mi Engine light came on and car wouldn't accelerate past 15kph. Throttle Assembly has failed and took three days to get a replacement. 

Return to top

2012 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

166-horsepower 2.4L I4 Hybrid 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

19000 mi Replaced transmission due to jerky movements, stalling when braking to a full stop. Did not fix the problem. 
22000 mi Car would jerk forward when coming to a stop under Engine Mode Only. No Jerking in Electric Only Mode. 
44700 mi Car told me to pull over. Took it to dealer. They changed computer and transmission 

Return to top

2011 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

turbocharged 274hp 2.0L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

31000 mi Transmission would slam into gear, and shift roughly when cold. Dealer replaced transmission oil temp sensor. Also updated computer ECU and changed brake switch which was a recall. 

Return to top

2011 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

200-horsepower 2.4L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

39060 mi

C $400
Brake service and transmission always fishing for gears 

Return to top

2009 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

175-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed shiftable automatic FWD

39000 mi The car downshifts rough at 22 mph when the engine is cold. The nearest dealer is over 30 miles away & they want me to rent a car & leave my car for up to a week. I have decided to drive the car until it is no longer drive-able. 

Return to top

2008 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

162-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed shiftable automatic FWD

51000 mi

US $6500
Well the transmission started making a weird noise while out of town on a road trip to Maryland from Texas which Kia said it was about to die. It resulted in my trip being 4 days longer w/o pay stuck wo a rental till it came in from Kia to be replaced. 
52500 mi

US $400
Well before they said the transmission was bad the last time they tried telling me it was the fuel pump which i stated it was not the fuel pump but was the transmission .so was replaced at no cost 4 no reason. 
18510 mi Engine seems unusually loud and buzzy during acceleration. Dealer test drove and examined onboard diagnostic computer information. They admit engine sounds unusually noisy, but claimed that they were unable to find anything unusual otherwise. 

Return to top

2007 Kia Optima

Engine not specified

111000 mi

US $1500
Car in/out shop from OCT.Clutch would'nt go into gear.1st mech thought bad seal replaced, did it again.Towed x2.Sat at mech shop x 2 week.Took to another shop & replaced Master Cylinder.Did it again.Replaced clutch & Master. 

Return to top

2007 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

161-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed shiftable automatic FWD

66000 mi Transmission was shifting strange. Dealer drove it, confirmed problem - reprogrammed shifting software. Noted that axleshaft was seized in hub, causing intermittent rubbing sound. Replaced axleshaft and hub. All work covered under warranty. 

Return to top

2007 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

161-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed manual FWD

94000 mi

US $600
Hydraulic went out in clutch. Car wouldn't move. 
99000 mi

US $872
Shifter cable broke....this is a manual transmission 

Return to top

2006.5 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

185-horsepower 2.7L V6 5-speed shiftable automatic FWD

109000 mi

US $1800
Car started to shudder at highway speeds and the MIL illuminated. Code P0741 was present and dealer quoted a replacement transmission. Car was not repaired and traded in before transmission failed which may have taken days or weeks. 

Return to top

2005 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

170-horsepower 2.7L V6 4-speed shiftable automatic FWD

50000 mi

US $400
CV joints 

Return to top

2005 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

138-horsepower 2.4L I4 4-speed shiftable automatic FWD

109000 mi 3rd gear failing 

Return to top

2004 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

138-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed manual FWD

83000 mi

US $800
Clutch pressure plate! I drive 95% freeway miles - hardly any shifting. 
65000 mi Finally after 6.5 years and 65,000 miles, the first non-maintenance repair -- a split CV joint boot. Shop spotted a small hole in the other and replaced it, too. Work done under warranty. 

Return to top

2004 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

138-horsepower 2.4L I4 4-speed shiftable automatic FWD

108500 mi

US $1155
Front left CV boot cracked. Replaced left front axle shaft assembly 
263000 mi

US $150
Replace Driveshafts 

Return to top

2003 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

170-horsepower 2.7L V6 4-speed shiftable automatic FWD

185000 mi Replaced drivers side axle 

Return to top

See TrueDelta's information for all Sedans
See TrueDelta's information for all Kia models.

Kia Optima Transmission Problems

See our lemon odds and nada odds page to see vehicles with no repairs or vehicles with more than three repairs. To see how frequently Kia Optima problems occur, check out our car reliability stats.