Hyundai-Kia admits to wrong fuel-economy claims
Hyundai and Kia are lowering their U.S. fuel economy ratings on most 2012 and 2013 models. Following several complaints, an investigation by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has found the carmaker guilty of posting false fuel-economy estimates on window-stickers at showroom since late 2010. The companies will spend millions of dollars compensating the owners of about 900,000 vehicles sold during that time.
According to the Detroit News, Hyundai aggressively advertised four models that boasted a false rating of 40 mpg (about 5.9 litres/100 km) on the highway. The 2013 Hyundai Accent, Veloster and Elantra will now see their EPA ratings fall to either 37-38 miles per gallon. Hyundai is “extremely sorry about these errors” and blamed “procedural errors” in the company’s fuel economy testing as the reason behind the discrepancy.
U.S. owners will be compensated based on their vehicles’ odometer readings with prepaid debit cards. Many of those owners were already complaining that the fuel economy claims were too optimistic, which recently led to a lawsuit in July this year by an organization called Consumer Watchdog on behalf of an Elantra owner.
Hyundai-Kia stresses that there was no intentional effort made to deceive consumers, and they will launch an apology-filled advertising campaign to alert consumers of the issue.
This issue does not affect owners in the GCC, as most companies, including Hyundai-Kia, do not locally announce nor advertise fuel-economy ratings here.