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Kia recalls 380K vehicles over fire risk

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Kia warned the owners of nearly 380,000 recalled vehicles that they should park outdoors because there’s a chance the cars could catch fire.

The South Korean automaker is recalling certain Sportage and Cadenza models with a faulty electrical circuit that could short-circuit, potentially causing a fire in the cars’ engine compartment.

The vehicles’ owners should park “outside and away from homes and other structures” until the problem is fixed, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Tuesday.

But Kia has not received any reports of fires, crashes or injuries stemming from the defect, according to recall documents.

Drivers may see their “check engine” light or other warning indicators light up before the problem occurs, records show. Other signs of the issue include a burning smell or smoke coming from the engine compartment.

Repairs will be made for free on the affected vehicles, which include Sportage models made from December 2015 to October 2020, along with Cadenza models produced from June 2016 to June 2019, recall documents say.

Kia Cars
Kia has not received any reports of fires, crashes or injuries stemming from the defect.
Getty Images

Dealers will replace certain fuses in the cars’ electrical junction boxes as part of the recall that’s expected to start on April 30, according to the documents.

The affected cars are not equipped with Kia’s Smart Cruise Control system, records show.

The recall came less than four months after NHTSA fined Kia and Hyundai $210 million for failing to conduct timely recalls of more than 1.6 million vehicles with potentially faulty engines.

Kia cars outside storage
The vehicles’ owners should park “outside and away from homes and other structures” until the problem is fixed, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

The agency’s Office of Defects Investigation is also probing both automakers over concerns about fires in some of their vehicles, NHTSA officials have said.

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