Kia recalls more than 4 lakh vehicles in the US due to airbag issue
Kia has recalled more than 4,10,000 vehicles in the United States to resolve an issue that can prevent airbags from inflating during a crash. The recall includes certain Forte small cars from 2017 and 2018 model years along with Sedona minivans and Soul small SUVs from 2017 through 2019. Among these, the electric model of Soul has also been included.
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The South Korean automaker informed the airbag control cover can come in contact with a memory chip and can potentially damage the electrical circuit which can stop the airbags from inflating. Dealers have been asked to inspect the computer and either update the software or replace it. Owners of the faulty models will be informed through mail starting March 21.
Kia stated in the documents that it posted to the US safety regulators that this issue came up in Korea in July last year. It has also added that it has received 13 customer complaints and 947 warranty claims, though no crashes or injuries have been reported due to the defect.
An earlier report stated Kia to be under scrutiny in the US due to incidents of engine failures and fires. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) had reported incidents of fires and engine failures of Kia vehicles that were produced between 2011 and 2016. The South Korean company was ordered to pay $27 million in fines and was also directed to improve safety measures. However, while it denied the charges made against it, the automaker opted to avoid a protracted legal fight. The NHTSA also opened an engineering analysis for the company to keep a tab on the recalls that it made related to the engine fire issue. The body said it will check the efficacy of the recall that Kia carried out for the defective models.
(With inputs from AP)