Kia Recalls 295,000 Cars In U.S. Over Engine Fire Risks
Kia has issued a recall for an estimated 294,756 vehicles in the United States, at risk of suffering an engine compartment fire that can occur while the car is on the move.
The recall involves the 2012-2013 Sorento, 2012-2015 Forte and Forte Koup, 2011-2013 Optima Hybrid, 2014-2015 Soul and 2012 Sportage. Kia dealers will inspect the engines for fuel or oil leaks, make repairs if necessary, and will even replace the engine if it’s damaged.
The Korean carmaker is also developing a Knock Sensor Detection System (KSDS) software update, which when available, will be performed by dealers free of charge.
This recall is expected to begin on January 27, 2021, with owners able to contact Kia customer service at 1-800-333-4542. Kia’s number for this recall is SC200. Owners may also contact the NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153).
Last week, both Kia and Hyundai agreed to pay a record $210 million civil penalty after failing to recall a combined 1.6 million vehicles for engine issues in a timely manner. Kia’s penalty totaled $70 million, including an upfront payment of $27 million, plus requirements to spend $16 million on specified safety measures.
As a result, Kia will create a new U.S. safety office, headed by a chief safety officer, while Hyundai will build a testing facility in the United States, focused on safety investigations.
“It’s critical that manufacturers appropriately recognize the urgency of their safety recall responsibilities and provide timely and candid information to the agency about all safety issues,” said an NHTSA exec.