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Hyundai and Kia enter fuel economy settlement

Korean car making giants Kia and Hyundai have entered into settlement agreements with owners and lessees of vehicles that were affected by their reduction of fuel economy ratings.

During November 2012 it was revealed that fuel economy adjustments affected 27 per cent of Hyundai 2011-2013 vehicles: reducing their fuel economy figures by 1-2mpg. Meanwhile, the adjustment also affected around 300,000 2011-2013 model year Kia vehicles.

Kia Soul 2014 Red

When the fuel economy discrepancy was revealed, around 53 complaints were lodged against the companies and later consolidated.

It is estimated that the Hyundai settlement has a value up to $210million; while the Kia agreement is worth up to $185million. This is dependent on the number of customers that choose to take part in the one-time lump sum payment option: some may choose to remain on the lifetime reimbursement program.

The lifetime reimbursement program was introduced at the time of the restatement in 2012 and sees Hyundai and Kia cover additional fuel costs associated with the rating change: as well as a 15 per cent premium to acknowledge the inconvenience caused to its customers. Owners and lessees are compensated based on their mileage and the fuel costs in the area they live. The lump sum payment option was introduced when it was felt that some owners may be reluctant to return their vehicles to dealerships to have their mileage assessed.

The proposed settlement will be reviewed in early 2014: if approval is granted then notices will be sent to individual class members.

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Paul Lucas

Filed under: Latest News, Green Cars, Kia, Hyundai

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