— A Hyundai and Kia engine lawsuit alleges several models are equipped with defective gasoline direct injection (GDI) and multipoint fuel injection (MPI) engines which may catch fire.
According to the plaintiffs, Hyundai and Kia knew even before the vehicles were sold that the engines may suddenly stall, fail or catch fire even when no collisions have occurred.
The plaintiffs claim engine design or engine manufacturing defects exist in these Hyundai and Kia models.
- 2012 Hyundai Santa Fe
- 2011-2013, 2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
- 2015-2016 Hyundai Veloster
- 2012-2015 Kia Forte
- 2012-2015 Kia Forte Koup
- 2011-2013 Kia Optima Hybrid
- 2012-2013 Kia Sorento
- 2014-2015 Kia Soul
- 2012 Kia Sportage
One of the three vehicle owners who filed the lawsuit says she purchased a 2012 Kia Optima Hybrid in May 2018 from a private seller in California. The vehicle is equipped with a 2.4-liter Theta II MPI engine, but just months after financing the Optima the engine started knocking.
The plaintiff says she took the vehicle to a local mechanic who said the engine was on the verge of failure. The plaintiff then took the Optima Hybrid to a Kia dealer where technicians found the engine had a “lower-end knock from crank area” and required replacement of the short block.
According to the plaintiff, she had to charge nearly $7,000 to a credit card as the vehicle stayed at the dealership for six months while waiting for the engine short block.
The long wait caused the plaintiff problems because she couldn't afford a rental car and instead had to rely on public transportation or borrowing a car for her 60-mile commute to work. After six months she received her repaired Kia, then about a year later the vehicle was recalled for engine problems.
Hyundai and Kia Engine Lawsuit: Connecting Rods and Bearings
The Hyundai and Kia vehicles are allegedly equipped with various defective GDI and MPI engines that wear out prematurely. The lawsuit alleges the connecting rods and connecting rod bearings prematurely wear down and fail.
Once the engine components wear down, the engines knock and the oil pressure warning lights illuminate. The engines may seize and fail while driving, knocking holes in the Hyundai and Kia engine blocks.
This can cause engine fluids to leak and cause sudden engine compartment fires.
Hyundai and Kia have issued several engine-related recalls over the last six years, but the class action alleges many affected vehicles weren't included in the recalls.
The Hyundai and Kia engine lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Southern Division: Thornhill, et al., v. Hyundai Motor Company, et al.
The plaintiffs are represented by Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP.