By choosing to build cars without engine immobilizers, Kia and Hyundai have created a huge mess. Not only have they been sued by various municipalities, the Korean automakers’ reputations have been tarnished. Plus, many vehicle owners get to live with the reality of their ride being a huge theft target.
Adding to their woes, a man in the state of Washington found out the hard way his stolen Kia won’t be covered by his insurance policy, so he’s on the hook for about $17,000. Depending on where you live, it can be difficult/expensive or even nearly impossible to insure certain Kias and Hyundais.
As covered by local news station KING 5, a many simply called “Tony” had his 2019 Kia Sorento stolen recently. The guy bought that specific vehicle because he found a deal on it from a private party, a mere $17,000 versus about $27,000 at dealerships for a similar vehicle.
That was back in March and for months Tony didn’t do any research into his vehicle, including looking at recalls. Big mistake.
Tony was able to transfer his insurance policy to the new car no problem. But come September when his plan was up for renewal, Progressive wouldn’t provide comprehensive coverage for the vehicle. That should’ve been a red flag.
We don’t know how anyone at this point doesn’t know about the TikTok challenge and many social media posts on a variety of platforms which show kids how to easily steal certain Kias and Hyundais lacking immobilizers. It turns out Tony had one of those easy-to-steal models and it didn’t have the security fix installed, so it was stolen.
Now Tony’s telling other people to “at the very least, put an AirTag or Tile” in their vehicle, especially if they have one of these Kias or Hyundais kids are swiping constantly. We’d go further. While some police departments and insurance companies are telling people to use steering wheel locks, those honestly provide horrible security.
Better yet, get something like a kill switch installed on your car. Sure, it won’t be as cheap and easy, but when every 13-year-old looking for cheap thrills and some TikTok likes wants to boost your ride it’s money well spent.
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