Hyundai, Kia Engine Fires Get Closer Look from Federal Regulators
U.S. auto safety regulators are reportedly ramping up a series of investigations into engine problems and car fires in a variety of Hyundai and Kia vehicles.
The probes cover more than 3 million vehicles from model years 2011 to 2016, according to the Detroit Free Press. NHTSA has received at least 161 complaints about engine failure or car fires, the news outlet reports.
Hyundai and Kia have recalled more than 1.5 million of those cars in recent years, including 390,000 vehicles called back by Hyundai in April 2021. Owners have at times been encouraged to park their cars outside and away from structures because of the fire risk.
“The agency says it's opening the engineering analysis to evaluate whether previous recalls covered enough vehicles,” the Free Press’ Tom Kirsher reports. “It also will monitor the effectiveness of previous recalls ‘as well as the long-term viability of related programs and non-safety field actions being conducted by Hyundai and Kia.’”
NHTSA said in late 2020 that Hyundai and Kia would be forced to pay $137 million in fines and safety improvements because they dragged their heels in recalling more than 1 million vehicles with faulty engines.
Hyundai told the Free Press in a prepared statement that it is cooperating with investigators.
“Hyundai has taken numerous proactive actions to address engine issues, including conducting several recalls, launching a new engine monitoring technology, providing extended warranties and enhancing our customer service response,” the company said. “Hyundai fosters a culture of transparency and accountability as the safety of our customers is the top priority in everything we do.”
Legal Rights for Hyundai and Kia Owners in California
The new investigations highlight an ongoing problem for car owners and lessors, whether they are driving a Hyundai, Kia or some other vehicle.
Major auto manufacturers recall millions of vehicles each year because of serious defects that put people’s safety at risk. Those recalls often come long after these cars have left dealership lots and well after manufacturers have become aware of the problem.
For car owners and lessors in California, the state’s lemon law gives you the power to fight back.
The Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act requires car manufacturers to perform various repairs on vehicles while they are under warranty. It also requires those companies to buy back (or replace, in some cases) cars that they cannot or refuse to fix.
Speak with a California Lemon Law Attorney
If you have been stuck with a malfunctioning vehicle or are locked in a dispute with a car manufacturer over repairs, a California lemon law attorney at Bickel Sannipoli APC can help. We work tirelessly to ensure that manufacturers are made accountable.
Our offices are conveniently located in Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco. Call us at (888) 800-1983 or contact us online to speak with a California lemon law attorney today.