— A Hyundai theft fix is allegedly being offered as of today in the form of $170 security kits for Hyundai vehicles, while Kia is offering steering wheel locks for its cars.
Hyundai and Kia thefts have skyrocketed in the U.S. after criminals began posting videos about how to steal the cars, sometimes by using nothing more than a USB cable.
"While all of our vehicles meet or exceed Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, unfortunately, our vehicles have been targeted in a coordinated effort on social media. Criminals are targeting our vehicles without engine immobilizers. Immobilizers became standard on all vehicles produced after November 1, 2021." — Hyundai
The thefts seem to have began in Milwaukee where Hyundai and Kia thefts increased 2,500% in one year, typically committed by middle school kids and other teens.
Videos show how a criminal can break or pry out a window, remove a panel and start the Hyundai or Kia by using a USB port or cable. This is possible on vehicles not equipped with engine immobilizers.
And knocking out the rear window is allegedly not a problem because the windows allegedly are not connected to the theft alarm systems.
The Hyundai and Kia thefts occur in vehicles with standard key ignitions as push-button start vehicles are equipped with engine immobilizers.
As of now, a Hyundai customer will be required to pay for the $170 security kit which will take about three hours to install at a dealership. Hyundai says the kit includes an alarm and a kill switch, and a software update will allegedly expand the theft protection.
However, the Hyundai security software update likely won't be available until sometime in 2023.
The automaker hasn't announced details about any security kit installation cost.
Hyundai and Kia have been working with local police departments since 2021 to hand out steering wheel locks in an effort to prevent the thefts.
But once lawyers got wind of the Hyundai and Kia thefts in the media, class action lawsuit were suddenly filed across the country.
Instead of blaming the criminals who damage and steal the vehicles, the class action lawsuits blame Hyundai and Kia for selling allegedly defective vehicles. You can check out a few of those class action lawsuits below.