Is your Hyundai or Kia causing problems? Or hiding them?
There is a lot going on in the news about Hyundai and Kia. If you have a Hyundai or Kia vehicle, make sure you don’t ignore problems with your vehicle.
Bad press is bad news for automakers. And South Korean auto manufacturer, Kia, and its parent company, Hyundai, has made headlines recently for more than one reason. In one news story, Hyundai and Kia owners across the country are bringing legal actions related to the lack of anti-theft devices in their vehicle leading to national theft sprees. In a completely unrelated problem, Hyundai and Kia have been forced to earmark $2 billion in their quarterly financials to replace bad engines in their vehicles.
If you have a Hyundai or Kia vehicle, you should make sure you are up to date on all the latest recalls and issues. If you are having problems with your vehicle that your dealer has been unable to repair, you may also be eligible to bring a lemon law claim. If you are unsure about your rights under lemon law in your state, our experienced team of lemon lawyers can help.
Why are Hyundais and Kias being stolen?
In the past year, a disturbing Kia trend known as “Kia Boys” or the “Kia Challenge” went viral on social media. Videos challenged viewers to steal certain Hyundai or Kia vehicles which used a traditional key rather than the newer electronic key fob that must be near the car in order for it to start. The lack of immobilizers made the cars easier to steal and led to huge increases in Hyundai and Kia thefts. In St. Petersburg, Florida, police reported that at least one third of car thefts in the area were linked to the challenge while the LA police department said that car thefts in the city had doubled, and police in other parts of the country were reportedly handing out steering wheel locks to Hyundai and Kia owners. Owners and many in the auto industry thought that the automaker should have issued a recall or offered a free repair but Hyundai maintained that the vehicles complied with all federal safety regulations and a recall was not required. The fiasco has led to class action lawsuits throughout the country.
All Hyundai and Kia vehicles manufactured since November 1, 2021, do now have immobilizers as standard but vehicles produced before that date may still be at risk of theft. On October 1, 2022, Hyundai began selling security kits for vehicles without immobilizers, however these kits are bought and installed at the owner’s expense. The MSRP of a kit is $170 but installation costs vary by location and some dealers have been significantly marking up the cost.
Hyundai and Kia have not named the vehicles that are affected but other sources report that the list includes the 2016-2021 Hyundai Accent, Elantra, Elantra GT, Sonata, Veloster, Venue, Kona, Tucson, Santa Fe, Santa Fe Sport, Santa Fe XL, and Palisade and 2011-2021 Kias that use a traditional key.
Why are Hyundai and Kia replacing engines?
Hyundai and Kia have settled a class action lawsuit over faulty engines in certain 2011-2019 MY Hyundai and Kia vehicles. The settlement makes millions of Kia and Hyundai vehicles eligible for a free engine replacement at a potential cost of up to $2 billion for Hyundai and Kia. Owners may also be eligible for an extended warranty and compensation for costs of repair and other expenses incurred because of the faulty engine.
This issue came to light when multiple Hyundai and Kia owners reported that their engines were blowing up or catching on fire. The problem was caused by a manufacturing problem that caused the rotating assembly to fail, which in turn led the rod bearings to fracture and the oil filters to clog. This could (and did) cause engine failure and sometimes fire. Owners of the affected vehicles brought a class action lawsuit against the automaker which was settled out of court. Unfortunately, many Hyundai and Kia owners are not aware that their vehicle is eligible for a free engine replacement, even after their engine has completely broken down.
What should I do if I am having problems with my Hyundai or Kia?
If you are experiencing problems with your Hyundai or Kia, you should not ignore them. Check the NHTSA website for any recalls on your particular vehicle and bring your vehicle to your dealer for repair. If you bought your vehicle recently, it may also still be under warranty. Any recall repairs or warranty repairs should be completed by your dealer free of charge.
If you bought your vehicle recently and your dealer cannot fix the problem (whether or not it is a recall issue), you may be able to get a replacement vehicle, a refund of your purchase price, or compensation. State lemon laws protect recent buyers (and sometimes lessees) of new (and sometimes used) vehicles. You can find out more about lemon law, and how the auto manufacturer must pay your lemon lawyer’s fees, in our Lemon Law Tips or by contacting one of our experienced lemon law team.
At Timothy Abeel & Associates, we have been helping owners of defective cars, trucks, SUVs, motorcycles, and RVs for years. If you need help with a lemon law claim, or want to know if you are even eligible to bring a legal claim, contact us online for a free case review or call us at 888-830-1474. We will work hard to get you the result that you need and we guarantee that, win or lose, we will never send you a bill for our fees, ever.