Kia Recalls 427,000 SUVs over Rollaway Risk Due to Defect

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Amidst the thrumming heartbeat of New York City, auto manufacturing giant, Kia America, made headlines as they issued a recall for over 427,000 of their flagship Telluride SUVs. The move came as a precautionary measure to rectify a potential defect that may risk the vehicles rolling away when parked.

Publication of documents by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), alerted the public on a noteworthy detail—the intermediate shaft and right front driveshaft of specific models from the years 2020 through 2024 might not be fully engaged. This mechanical lapse can gradually escalate into a significant concern leading to unsolicited vehicle movement, even while stationed—thus amplifying potential risks for crashes.

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The problems that surfaced barely scratched the surface of the duration of affected models. Taking this into consideration, Kia America made the decision to recall all Tellurides models from the span of 2020 to 2023, as well as select models from the year 2024, a course action taken earlier this month. Notably, at the time the recall was issued, NHTSA documents showed no registered instances of injuries or crashes related to the defect.

The root cause of the issue seems to stem from an improper assembly process, causing the shaft engagement problem. The recall primarily targets 2020-2024 Tellurides that originally rolled off the assembly line between January 9, 2019, and October 19, 2023. Kia America estimates that merely 1% of these manufactured vehicles contain the suspected defect.

To address this issue, the recall documentation indicates that dealers will provide an updated electronic parking brake software and replace any defective intermediate shafts, free of charge. For those vehicle owners who have already procured repair services, Kia assures reimbursement of expenses.

While the solution is underway, Kia offers a practical suggestion for drivers of the affected SUVs. All drivers are directed to engage the emergency brake manually before separating themselves from the vehicle. Drivers can also visit either the NHTSA or Kia’s recall lookup platform to ascertain whether their specific vehicle falls under the umbrella of this recall.

Owner notification letters are scheduled to be dispatched on May 15, with dealer notification set in motion a few days earlier. The Associated Press made efforts to reach out to the California-based Kia America seeking further commentary on the matter, on Sunday.