Update: This case is now a multidistrict litigation lawsuit (MDL) pending in the Central District of California
FeganScott filed a nationwide class-action lawsuit on behalf of Kia and Hyundai vehicle owners claiming the automobile manufacturers sold millions of vehicles that do not contain a standard safety component to prevent car theft.
The cars’ design flaw revolves around engine immobilizers, an anti-theft device that can prevent vehicles from starting unless a verified code is received, inhibiting the vehicle from being hot-wired or started by any means other than an authorized key.
Incidents of theft involving Kia and Hyundai vehicles have been steadily on the rise. After a group of teenagers in Milwaukee, WI discovered that immobilizers were missing in certain Kia vehicles, the theft rate of said vehicles increased by almost 3,200% year-over-year in the first six months of 2021.
In recent months, Kia and Hyundai acknowledged the existence of the design defect yet have failed to issue a safety recall or offer a no-cost remedy.
The lawsuit seeks to represent all current and former owners of 2011-2022 Kia vehicles as well as 2015-2022 Hyundai vehicles that do not contain an engine immobilizer and aims to hold Kia responsible for damages incurred by owners as a result of the motor company’s deceptive business practices.