Hyundai, Kia Settle US Class Action Lawsuit Over Vehicle Thefts For $200M
Hyundai and Kia reached a $200 million settlement today on the class-action lawsuit brought by vehicle owners over widespread car thefts. The settlement covers approximately 8.3 million 2011 through 2022 model-year Hyundai and Kia vehicles with traditional key ignition systems that lack anti-theft devices.
Up to $145 million of the settlement covers compensation for out-of-pocket losses incurred by consumers who had their Hyundai or Kia cars stolen. This compensation includes a maximum of $6,125 for damage to the vehicle and personal property and $3,375 for insurance-related expenses like insurance deductibles or increased insurance premiums.
The settlement also covers compensation for expenses like car rentals, taxis, or other transportation costs not covered by insurance. Owners can be reimbursed for towing costs, tickets, fines, and other penalties incurred after the vehicle was stolen.
Previously both Hyundai and Kia said they would provide software upgrades for the affected vehicles that lack anti-theft immobilizers in a move to help reduce car thefts. If the vehicles were not eligible to receive the software upgrade, both companies indicated they would provide up to $300 to customers allowing them to purchase anti-theft devices like steering wheel locks or aftermarket immobilizers and theft deterrent systems.
Thefts of popular Hyundai and Kia models skyrocketed after a series of TikTok videos were released by individuals, showing how to steal cars without push-button ignitions or anti-theft devices. At one time, the thefts became so widespread that several major insurance carriers threatened to stop insuring the affected vehicles or refused to insure new customers who recently purchased these vehicles.
Among the Hyundai vehicles affected are the 2011 to 2022 Elantra, Tucson, Sonata, Accent, Kona, and Santa Fe. Kia vehicles include the Forte, Optima, Rio, Sedona, Sorento, Soul, and Sportage. Hyundai says the software fix takes less than an hour to complete, and each vehicle will get a window sticker alerting potential carjackers of the new anti-theft technology installed in the vehicle.
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