By on January 21, 2015

2013 Hyundai Accent

The $360 million settlement between the U.S. Department of Justice and Hyundai and Kia for overstating fuel economy figures was approved Tuesday by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

The Detroit News report the approval also rejected a request from the attorneys general in New York, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont, asking the court set aside a minimum of $25 million for their states’ respective electric vehicle programs. The court sided with the Justice Department in its ruling, warning that such a request would threaten the original settlement agreement with more complex and lengthy negotiations.

The agreement includes $100 million in civil penalties, $50 million for independent auditing of the Korean duo’s offerings, and a forfeiture of $210 million in greenhouse emission credits. It also ends the Environmental Protection Agency’s investigation into the overstated figures, and affects 600,000 Hyundai and 300,000 Kia models made between 2011 and 2013.

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22 Comments on “Hyundai, Kia $360M US Justice Department Settlement Approved In District Court...”


  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    $400 per car – fair enough. I’m glad this is over; I’m tired of hearing about it, and I doubt it’s affected the general public’s opinion of their products.

    Our 13 Optima Hybrid actually exceeds its 40 mpg highway rating if you drive the speed limit.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Mileage claims are like political promises, no one really believes them anyway. We just hope they come close to what they claim

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        Agreed. But someone cared enough to bring a meritorious lawsuit.

        I am a fan of H/K, but they shouldn’t have let this happen.

        Perhaps I’m more sensitive to it now that I realize my Leaf’s range is dramatically lower than Nissan’s lofty claims.

      • 0 avatar
        S2k Chris

        I’ve easily exceeded, often by 10%, every car I’ve ever owned’s (Honda, Acura, Toyota, Jeep, VW) window-sticker stated mileage. And I don’t put any real effort into getting good mileage, either.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          None of the cars we have owned have ever come close to the advertised mileage on the sticker.

          Even the 2011 Elantra we bought for my grand daughter got much worse mileage than advertised. Probably because she cruised at 85+mph to college and back, with three chubby girlfriends as passengers.

          So I believe that driving style, speed, atmospherics, weather and other external factors determine what mileage you get with any vehicle.

          For those who care, mileage in my 2011 Tundra 5.7 is actually better than in my wife’s 2015 Sequoia 5.7. But both are what mileage freaks would consider ‘bad’ at 12/11mpg City, 17/16mpg Hwy, for a combined 13/13mpg (heavily skewed by Hwy driving).

          • 0 avatar
            Frylock350

            I agree with this. There are so many factors that determine fuel economy that the window sticker is just a vague idea. However it is very useful for comparing similar vehicles. That’s what made Hyundai’s overstatement a sin. How many Elantras were sold because people assumed they’d get better relative MPG than with a Civic/Corolla?

            However, you are actually getting the advertised highway mileage for your 2011 Tundra. The EPA rating is 13/15/17. The 13 combined is a bit frightening. I average 13.5-14.5 combined with E85 in my Silverado.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Frylock350, you have cylinder management in your Silverado. With our V8s all cylinders are active when the engine is running.

            In NM we have E10 and E15. I use 91-octane E10. It seems to work best at my driving altitudes.

    • 0 avatar
      Denx57

      It didnt affect my decision to buy a new Elantra back in June of ’13. After 66k miles I still have never regretted my decision.
      The car has performed flawlessly and the gas mileage been above the window sticker rating.
      The best car I have ever owned!

  • avatar
    Hummer

    Seems a bit extreme, who cares, just reimburse every owner the extra $500 it costs to drive the vehicle over 100k miles. It’s not like it’s getting half the printed MPG.

    Also forfeiting 280M in funny money? Hilarious in a weird way.

  • avatar
    superchan7

    Owned. The only car that I couldn’t hit or exceed the rated fuel economy with was a Porsche, and I know exactly why.

    This wasn’t the only problem. The 2.0T of the last Sonata was rated at something like 270 hp, and almost all reviewers stated that it never felt like it had that much.

    The current Sonata 2.0T is rated 245 hp.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      “The current Sonata 2.0T is rated 245 hp”

      Considering 3 separate automotive publications have recorded a 0-60 time of 8 seconds for that car, it seems likely that most reviewers will still state that it never felt like it had that much.

  • avatar
    Timtoolman

    My truck is rated at 14/17 with a Hemi. I’ve bested the highway mileage to the tune of 18.8- once. In a perfect world, I could probably get more, but only on a flat road with ZERO traffic or stops, moving approximately 45-50 mph, RPM hovering in that 15 to 18 range. Much more than that, the drag coefficient starts to kick in and the MPG begins to drop. At normal highway speeds of between 65 and 85, I get around 16.5, which, I’d say, is in range.

    On the other end of the scale, my “city” driving is more suburbanish driving, although the lights can hold me up to around 2 minutes. Still, I can eke out around 15-15.5. In actual CITY driving, I’d venture I only get in the 12-13’s.

  • avatar
    SC5door

    So I wonder when Ford will have their day in court?

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    In city driving I’ve never hit the window sticker on the G8 GT…and I know why. So much fun to press the skinny pedal down…

  • avatar
    50merc

    We at least can be grateful the court rejected those state AG’s rent-seeking bid for boondoggle politically correct electric vehicle giveaways. If Attorney Generals want to be appropriators of public funds, let them get elected as legislators. Judicial bonanzas should become General Fund revenue.

  • avatar
    donutguy

    I have a 2014 Elantra and if I drive at 60-65, I average close to 40mpg.

    Good enough for me :-)

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      That’s pretty good. I do not believe that my grand daughter got anywhere near 30mpg in her 2011 Elantra (automatic) but she cruised at 85+mph at an altitude above 4500 feet, and higher. Her mpg was closer to 20-25mpg because of the mountainous terrain she had to climb over on the way to college.

      But I would buy another Elantra all over again. It never gave her any problems, never broke down, never went back to the dealership for anything, and when she sold it to another student at the end of last year she got more than 50% back from what we paid for it.

      Everybody was a happy camper.

  • avatar
    Denx57

    I have a ’13 elantra gt. Currently has 66k miles. I always avg 35mpg… 70% highway driving. Im very satisfied.
    A recent trip out west using premium gas (100% gas, no ethanol) I avgd well over 40 mpg going 75 mph and faster at times. Utah has an 80mph speed limit.

    This whole lawsuit thing sounds bogus to me.

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