Korean automaker Kia is conducting a safety recall of nearly 380,000 vehicles in the U.S. due to concerns of potential engine fires, according to a letter published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Why it matters: The recall comes after the NHTSA opened an investigation in 2019 into Kia and Hyundai engine fires. In November 2020, the agency announced that it was fining the automakers $137 million for not recalling cars with potentially faulty engines quickly enough, according to the AP.
Get market news worthy of your time with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free.
Details: Kia noted that the specific models affected are the 2017-2021 Sportage and Cadenza, and that the potential for a hydraulic electronic control unit (HECU) to short-circuit increased the risk of engine fire — though the exact cause of the problem is unknown.
Kia maintains that there have been "no known reported fires, crashes or injuries related to this condition."
The safety recall report on the NHTSA website noted that some owners could see warning lights on their cars' dashboards, as well as a burning odor and smoke from the engine compartment.
"As a precautionary measure, Kia is instructing owners to park their vehicles outdoors and away from other vehicles or structures until the recall repair has been completed," the report added.
What's next: The recall is expected to begin at the end of April, and Kia will notify owners and conduct repairs for free.
Like this article? Get more from Axios and subscribe to Axios Markets for free.