2023 Kia Sorento Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Loss of drive power, faulty error warnings, exploding sunroofs, and cracking windshields are causes of complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones | Reviewer: Sergei Lemberg

Originally launched in 2002 as a utilitarian all-terrain vehicle, the Kia Sorento is now a large, family-friendly SUV. But not everyone who drives the 2023 model is happy. Owners report losing power on the road and getting all sorts of collision warnings together with both visual and audible alarms. There are also complaints about windshields cracking and chipping, and sunroofs exploding.

Click on other model years to view more problems: 2019   2020   2021   2022

Most Common Problems with the 2023 Kia Sorento

Complaints to the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) about the 2023 Kia Sorento are varied. Components and systems they mention include the engine, structure, visibility, forward collision avoidance, and lane departure. There are also a couple of complaints filed as being “unknown or other” problems, and one that mentions the “traction control system.”

When an owner from Kentucky was driving down a dry road on a sunny day, vehicle traction control suddenly activated. The complaint states that the brakes went to the floor and the “steering wheel started to jerk while the car was still going 55 mph.”

2023 Kia Sorento Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Engine
18
18
Electrical System
15
15
Unknown Or Other
11
11
Power Train
8
8
Service Brakes
6
6
Steering
6
6
Fuel/propulsion System
5
5
Forward Collision Avoidance: Warnings
4
4
Lane Departure: Blind Spot Detection
4
4
Vehicle Speed Control
4
4

Problems with Faulty Error Warnings

Error warnings play an important part in keeping the occupants of vehicles safe. But when they malfunction, they can do just the opposite as a 2023 Kia Sorento owner from Virginia knows. This particular saga began a few months after buying a new Sorento.

“While driving normally, one of the collision warning indicators came on while switching lanes and then nearly every alarm in the car cycled continuously. These audible and visual alarms were highly distracting to drive with and it is surprising the software allows this to happen and that there’s no sensor override or silencer button. Even when the car is turned off and back on again the alarms continue.”

The dealer kept the car for a couple of weeks waiting for Kia to provide guidance. They thought it was probably a short. The long and the short of it is that they did what they thought needed to be done to fix the problem. That took 3 weeks. But only 2 days after getting the SUV back the owner had the same problem.

“I will be taking it back to the dealer again, hopefully this problem is only on my vehicle. But these smart cars should really have a way for drivers to easily disable all the sensor based features in case this happens so at least the car can still be driven to get maintenance without increased risk of an accident. If I had been on a long road trip or in a rural area it could’ve been hours on the road driving with alarms blaring constantly and highly distracting.”

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Motive Power Loss Problems

A large number of 2022 Kia Sorento owners have complained about losing motive power. It is also a problem with Kia K5 models. There is a current recall for 2021-2022 Sorento and 2021-2023 K5 models, but not for the 2023 Sorento. The recall states that a loss of drive power is caused by an impaired “fail-safe” limited-mobility drive mode. This is prompted by a transmission oil pump malfunction that can result in “a complete loss of drive power.”

It’s not clear whether the owner of a 2023 Sorento is facing this same issue. But when the SUV is “in eco mode and pulling onto a road with a steep grade the car lacks power to safely drive.” The owner has tested this four times and always gets the same result.

“The hesitation lasts for about 3 seconds with the gas pedal fully depressed. The vehicle moves about 2 mph, maybe slightly faster, but it’s noticeable.”

Sunroof and Windshield Problems

Exploding sunroofs and cracking windshields have been the topic of consumer complaints about the Kia Sorento for several years. So, it’s not much of a surprise to discover that owners of the 2023 Sorento are also experiencing issues with cracking, chipping, and exploding glass.

Cracking Windshields

In a complaint to the NHTSA, an owner from California states that after purchasing a 2023 Sorento a few months before, the windshield had chipped or cracked at least four times. Usually, it was when traveling at high speeds on the freeway. “I contacted the Kia Dealership and Kia Customer Service and they have not responded to my request for assistance.”

That’s not surprising either since dealers will commonly deny these defects claiming they have been caused by rocks. For example, two complaints about the 2022 model state:

  • Owner from Alabama, January 2022: “The dealership refused to help and I was quoted $1,300 to replace (the windshield), which is unfair.”
  • Owner from California, January 2023: “The dealership denied the defect claiming the hole (in the windshield) that was produced where the crack splintered was the origin and was caused by a rock.”

Exploding Sunroofs

The owner of a 2023 Kia Sorento Hybrid was driving along a freeway within the speed limit when the sunroof suddenly exploded. “Initially, I thought that it was a gunshot and someone was shooting at me. I sped up and then thought I had a flat tire. After pulling over, I realized it was in fact my sunroof which randomly exploded. Luckily I had the shade up, so the glass didn’t fall into the vehicle. This could’ve caused a horrible accident if any cars were around me, or if I wasn’t able to stay calm. It sounded like a shotgun went off in my ear.” The complaint adds that there were no warning signs that the glass was cracking. Also, nothing had hit the vehicle at any time.

The owner took it back to be fixed. When it was returned, there were still glass shards in the top of the SUV. “When I pushed the sunroof back the first two times I could hear glass shards pushing in the tracks and forcing it back into position.” He returned it and the dealer said they were “working on a fix.”

Because he considers it to be a safety issue, the owner states, “ I do not feel safe myself driving in the vehicle nor having my children travel in the vehicle. I’ve let it be known I do not want the car back and I want out of the loan. I had the car for a total of 53 days and it’s been in the shop 75+ days now.”

What to do if your 2023 Kia Sorento is a Lemon?

If you have a 2023 Kia Sorento that you think might be a lemon, Lemberg Law is available to assess your problems. Because the law says that Kia must pay the bills for lemon law cases, it’s not going to cost you a cent. After all, every year automakers, including Kia, replace, buy back, or pay cash settlements to thousands of vehicle owners who find they have bought lemons.

If you want Lemberg Law to help free of charge, please call our Helpline or fill out a contact form.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones
3 COMMENTS
  • Tee W

    My new 23 Sorento lost all its fuel due to the drive shaft rubbing holes in the gas tank in 3 spots, that was at 5000 miles, the radio doesn’t work and hasn’t for months, safety features work intermittently, now at 10000 miles dealership says I need new brake rotors…..

  • Mary G

    I have a new KIA less than a moth old. I bought it at KIA of LaGrange, Ga. The trim on the top of the door has come loose at the edge so that all of the trim could easily be pulled off. It can pushed back in but it always pops back up. There is no evidence of an attempt of a break in. I owned a 2020 KIA Sorento that was built Solid but someone hit me on the highway in Alabama and totaled it. It was only 3 years old with 32,000 miles on it. I miss the space.

  • No

    No longer than three months after getting my new 2023 Kia Sorrento sx did I notice a small chip at the top of my windshield. Within two weeks, the chip turned into a crack across my windshield affecting my line of vision. Due to reported windshield glass shortage, nationwide from Kia safelight auto repair ported the replacements at $1,700. Moreover, they don’t know when the glass part will come in, it’s been 6 months.

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