U.S. Senate panel wants to question Hyundai, Kia over engine fires

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The Senate Commerce Committee’s Republican chairman and ranking Democrat stated on Wednesday they had asked top U.S. executives at Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors to testify at a November 14 hearing on reports of engine fires associating vehicles from these two automakers.

The call to testify comes after safety advocates raised issues about fires in vehicles uninvolved in collisions. The non-profit, consumer advocacy group Center for Auto Safety stated earlier week that 103 fire complaints had been filed with U.S. safety regulators since June 12 and prompted an immediate recall of almost 3 million vehicles.

Hyundai stated it had received the request to show up “and is currently reviewing it.” The company added it frequently monitors and reviews potential safety concerns, such as non-collision fires, “with all of its vehicles and acts swiftly to recall any vehicles with safety-related defects.”

In May last year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) started a formal investigation into the recall of almost 1.7 million Hyundai and Kia vehicles concerning engine defects.

A South Korean whistleblower in 2016 reported issues to NHTSA, which has been investigating the timeliness of three recalls launched in the United States and if they covered enough vehicles.

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