Kia, Hyundai Blame Mass Car Thefts on ‘Lax Policing’ in Court Defense

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By Car Brand Experts

Kia and Hyundai Shift Blame to “Lax Policing” in Response to Mass Car Thefts

Kia and Hyundai’s Response to Vehicle Thefts Lawsuits

In response to the surge of car thefts involving Kia and Hyundai vehicles nationwide, the Korean automakers are now entangled in legal battles with victims filing lawsuits, holding them accountable for the financial losses and mental distress caused by the thefts. However, Kia and Hyundai have mounted a defense, attributing the issue to what they term “lax policing.”

Legal Battle and Core Arguments

Seventeen cities have taken legal action against Kia and Hyundai, accusing the companies of failing to incorporate adequate anti-theft technology in their vehicles. As detailed by Reuters, the automakers are seeking the dismissal of these lawsuits, arguing that the responsibility for the thefts should not rest on them but on an “unprecedented criminal social media phenomenon.”

Social Media Influence on Theft Phenomenon

The companies refer to videos circulating on platforms like TikTok, providing instructions on how to steal Kia and Hyundai vehicles without advanced security features like push-button starts and ignition immobilizers. The accessibility of these vehicles to thieves led to a trend where groups like the “Kia Boyz” openly showcased their thefts, propelling Kia and Hyundai models to the top of the stolen vehicle lists in various areas.

Cause and Effect: Policing and Anti-Theft Measures

Kia and Hyundai have countered the accusations by pointing to “lax policing and prosecution policies” and a diversion of police resources away from auto theft prevention as contributing factors. They argue that these aspects have played a more significant role in the rising theft rates than the absence of immobilizers in their vehicles.

Ongoing Legal Journey and Compensation Efforts

Despite facing legal challenges, both automakers have settled a class-action lawsuit for $200 million to compensate affected owners for losses incurred due to thefts and resulting damages. Though initial approval was initially denied, the matter is under review by the automakers. Meanwhile, Kia and Hyundai are implementing solutions to address the issue, albeit at a gradual pace that falls short of rectifying the absence of immobilizers in affected models.


As the legal battles unfold, Kia and Hyundai are steadfast in their defense against allegations of negligence, placing blame on external factors like social media influence and policing insufficiencies. Meanwhile, affected cities and victims continue to seek accountability and redress for the ramifications of the widespread vehicle thefts.


1. What are Kia and Hyundai being accused of in the lawsuits?

Kia and Hyundai are facing allegations of failing to include sufficient anti-theft technology in their vehicles, contributing to the high rates of car thefts involving their models.

2. How are social media platforms linked to the spike in Kia and Hyundai vehicle thefts?

Videos circulating on platforms like TikTok provided instructions on how to steal Kia and Hyundai vehicles lacking advanced security features, fueling a trend among thieves.

3. What steps are Kia and Hyundai taking to address the theft issue?

Both automakers have settled a class-action lawsuit for $200 million and are gradually implementing solutions to mitigate the theft problem, albeit without completely addressing the lack of immobilizers in affected vehicles.

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