Columbus, Ohio City Attorney to Sue Hyundai, Kia Over Thefts

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey
columbus ohio city attorney to sue hyundai kia over thefts

Columbus, Ohio City Attorney Zach Klein said earlier this week that he intends to file a lawsuit against Hyundai and Kia.


He's going to sue over what he says is a failure to install anti-theft devices. That's because thefts of cars from the two automakers are on the rise in the city.

From The Columbus Dispatch: "As of Oct. 18, approximately 2,740 Kia or Hyundai models had been reported stolen to Columbus police, compared to 461 during the same time frame last year ― a whopping 461 percent year-over-year increase."

Klein complains that Hyundai and Kia didn't include security features such as engine immobilizers, reinforced steering columns, and sensors that would activate when the window glass was broken.

“Kia and Hyundai’s negligence in pursuit of corporate profit is unconscionable," Klein said in a news release. "It’s time we held these automakers accountable for cheating consumers and passing the buck and responsibility to clean up the mess they made onto the rest of us.”

Hyundais and Kias have been vulnerable to theft this year, thanks in part to a video tutorial that showed how easy it could be to steal these cars.

Columbus law enforcement officials also complained that the automakers weren't responsive.

Hyundai and Kia point out that their cars meet required safety standards and they've offered security solutions via their dealerships while they work on patches for future vehicles.

Klein is asking for sales of the affected vehicles to stop, a recall to be forced, and damages in excess of $25,000. He needs city council approval to hire a law firm as special counsel. Once he does that, he will file the suit in the coming weeks.

St. Louis has also threatened to sue the automakers.

[Image: Kia]

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  • Art  Vandelay Art Vandelay on Nov 09, 2022

    They have an immobilizer. The bearings fail and the car is immobilized.

  • Mnmarlin Mnmarlin on Nov 12, 2022

    Seems ridiculous to blame the manufacturer and not those doing the stealing. But that pretty much sums up gun control efforts.

  • Jwee More range and faster charging cannot be good news for the heavily indebted and distracted Musk.Tesla China is discounting their cars. Apart from the Model 3, no one is much buying Tesla's here in Europe. Other groups have already passed Tesla in Europe, where it was once dominant.Among manufacturers, 2021 EV sales:VW Group 25%, Stellantis at 14.5%,Tesla at 13.9%Hyundai-Kia at 11.2% Renault Group at 10.3%. Just 2 years ago, Tesla had a commanding 31.1% share of the European EV marketOuch. https://carsalesbase.com/european-sales-2021-ev/@lou_BC, carsalebase.com changed their data, so this is slightly different than last time I posted this, but same idea.
  • Varezhka Given how long the Mitsubishi USA has been in red, that's a hard one. I mean, this company has been losing money in all regions *except* SE Asia and Oceania ever since they lost the commercial division to Daimler.I think the only reason we still have the brand is A) Mitsubishi conglomerate's pride won't allow it B) US still a source of large volume for the company, even if they lose money on each one and C) it cost too much money to pull out and no one wants to take responsibility. If I was the head of Mitsubishi's North American operation and retreat was not an option, I think my best bet would be to reduce overhead by replacing all the cars with rebadged Nissans built in Tennessee and Mexico.As much as I'd like to see the return of Triton, Pajero Sport (Montero Sport to you and me), and Delica I'm sure that's more nostalgia and grass is greener thing than anything else.
  • Varezhka If there's one (small) downside to the dealer not being allowed to sell above MSRP, it's that now we get a lot of people signing up for the car with zero intention of keeping the car they bought. We end up with a lot of "lightly used" examples on sale for a huge mark-up, including those self-purchased by the dealerships themselves. I'm sure this is what we'll end up seeing with GR Corolla in Japan as well.This is also why the Land Cruiser has a 4 year waitlist in Japan (36K USD starting MSRP -> buy and immediately flip for 10, 20K more -> profit) I'm not sure if there's a good solution for this apart from setting the MSRP higher to match what the market allows, though this lottery system is probably as close as we can get.
  • Jeff S @Lou_BC--Unrelated to this article but of interest I found this on You Tube which explains why certain vehicles are not available in the US because of how the CAFE measures fuel standards. I remember you commenting on this a few years ago on another article on TTAC. The 2023 Chevrolet Montana is an adorable small truck that's never coming to the USA. It's not because of the 1.2L engine, or that Americans aren't interested in small trucks, it's that fuel economy legislation effectively prevents small trucks from happening. What about the Maverick? It's not as small as you think. CAFE, or Corporate Average Fuel Economy is the real reason trucks in America are all at least a specific dimension. Here's how it works and why it means no tiny trucks for us. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-eoMrwrGA8A&ab_channel=AlexonAutos
  • Gabe A new retro-styled Montero as their halo vehicle to compete against the Bronco, Wrangler and 4Runner. Boxy, round headlights like the 1st generation, two door and four door models, body on frame.A compact, urban truck, Mighty Max, to compete against the Maverick. Retro-styled like the early 90s Mighty Max.A new Outlander Sport as more of a wagon/crossover to compete against the Crosstrek and Kona. Needs to have more power (190+ HP) and a legit transmission, no CVT.A new Eclipse hybrid to compete against the upcoming redesigned Prius. Just match the Prius's specs and make it look great.Drop the Eclipse Cross, I am not sure why they wanted to resurrect the Pontiac Aztec. Keep the Mirage and keep it cheap, make the styling better and up the wheel size. The Outlander seems fine.I like the idea of some sort of commercial vehicle, something similar in size to the Promaster City but with AWD.
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