Kia Motors stated on Friday it was recalling over 507,000 vehicles in the United States as the electronic glitch may avoid air bags from deploying in a crash.
The recall comes after an announcement in March by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that it was probing why some air bags had couldn’t deploy in Kia vehicles and its affiliate Hyundai Motor following accidents in which four people were killed and another six were injured.
The two Korean automakers have now recalled almost 1.1 million U.S. vehicles to address the concern. NHTSA stated in March that it was aware of six serious accidents in which air bags failed to deploy in frontal crashes, about four of them in 2011 model Hyundai Sonatas and two in 2012 and 2013 Kia Forte vehicles. The crash of the 2013 Forte took place in Canada.
Kia’s recall issued on Friday concerns 2010-2013 Kia Fortes, 2011-2013 Kia Optimas and 2011-2012 Kia Optima Hybrid and Sedona vehicles.
The company stated the air bag control unit may short circuit as they may be susceptible to electrical overstress, avoiding the frontal air bags and seat belt pretensioners, which pull the driver and front seat passenger firmly back into their seats, from deploying.
The company stated it does not yet have a repair, but is working with its provider on the issue.
Kia spokesman James Bell stated the company is trying to have a remedy by the scheduled owner notification date of July 27. If Kia lacks such a remedy by that date or if any customer feels unsafe in his/her vehicle, we will give a rental car until the repair has been finished.