Kia recalls nearly 380,000 Sportages and Cadenzas
All publicity is good publicity? We’re not sure Kia officials would agree this month, as a combined 377,000-plus Sportage SUVs and Cadenza sedans are being recalled – along with a warning that owners of the vehicles should park outside and away from structures due to a tendency to catch fire.
Company officials described the issue as “due to a potential short circuit in the vehicle’s hydraulic electronic control unit (HECU), which is part of the braking system. If the HECU short circuits, it can cause a fire in the engine compartment,” per Consumer Reports. Such a problem may be indicated to the driver from the pressure warning light, ABS warning light and/or (rather unhelpfully) the “check engine” light.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a statement that, though no major incidents involving the combustion of Sportages and Cadenzas have been reported, Kia is acting preemptively in light of several other recent recalls: Kia Sorrento models were recalled in September 2020 for fire issues; the Optima has been recalled twice in the past two years for various issues; and over 500,000 Souls, Sedonas and Sportages sold between 2011 and ’16 were recalled in February 2019.
In addition, NHTSA began investigations of Optima, Santa Fe, Sorrento and Soul models released between 2011 and ’15 in April 2019; this was based on over 300 reports filed with consumer advocacy group Center for Auto Safety regarding the regrettable tendency of certain Kias and Hyundais to burst into flame. Kia Hyundai settled one class-action suit in October ’19 for $760 million, but the NHTSA investigation is ongoing.