Following news in March that the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) was investigating reports of potentially defective airbags in cars made by Kia and its partner Hyundai, the companies ordered the recall of 500,000 various makes and models “out of an abundance of caution.”
NHTSA looked into the matter after receiving reports of at least 6 accidents in which 4 people died and another 6 were injured, according to The Car Connection. In each incident, the airbags failed to deploy due to an apparent electronic glitch.
All told, the recall impacts approximately 507,000 of the following vehicles:
- 2010-2013 Kia Fortes
- 2011-2013 Kia Optima
- 2011-2012 Kia Optima Hybrid and Sedona
In March, Hyundai recalled 425,000 Sonatas in the U.S. for the same problem. This followed the recall of 154,000 Sonatas two months earlier, in connection with the same problem. Affected vehicles in the latest recall were manufactured through August 2012.
The recall followed a 2014 lawsuit in which a 2012 Kia Forte sedan was involved in a wreck and its airbag failed to inflate. The Forte Koup, a 2-door version of the Forte sedan, was involved in a similar accident in which the airbag didn’t deploy in 2017. Last month, a joint investigation was ordered to determine who was at fault and what exactly needed to be fixed.
Kia says it has yet to come up with a solution to the problem, but as soon one is found, it will contact owners of affected vehicles by mail.
Source: The Wall Street Journal