Hyundai is holding a series of clinics across the U.S. to make antitheft software upgrades to vehicles without the technology, which has made them vulnerable to theft.
The South Korean automakers held the first of the clinics in New York City over the weekend. Others are scheduled to follow in Chicago this coming weekend, in Minneapolis Nov. 10 and 11, in Saint Paul, Minn. Nov. 12 and 13, and in Rochester, N.Y. Nov. 17 and 18.
It earlier conducted test clinics in Washington, D.C. and St. Louis, and its dealers held clinics in Baltimore and Phoenix.
The free software installations add an ignition-kill feature activated when the doors are locked with the vehicle’s key fob, which also sets the factory alarm, Hyundai said in a statement about the clinics.
Some Kia and Hyundai models 2011 to 2022 lacked immobilizing technology and have been the target of a rash of thefts nationwide fueled by how-to-steal posts on social media platforms.
The automakers have made the software upgrade available for the models and distributed steering wheel locks to law enforcement agencies to give to vehicle owners, but an estimated five million of the vehicles hadn’t been updated as of July, vehicle data and listings provider CARFAX said.
Multiple major cities have sued the companies, which agreed to pay more than $200 million to settle a class-action suit over the thefts that covered about nine million vehicle owners between them.
Hyundai said it’s supporting several other regional antitheft software clinics this fall and that each installation takes less than 30 minutes. It said the upgrade has been installed in nearly a million vehicles so far.
"We are committed to ensuring the quality and integrity of our products, all of which are fully compliant with federal anti-theft requirements,” said Hyundai Vice President of After-Sales David VandeLinde.
Originally posted on Auto Dealer Today