“We were about four and a half hours away from home when we start to hear some really weird noises,” says the narrator in a trending TikTok video, which recounts a heart-pounding ordeal faced by a couple driving a Hyundai.
The video from TikTok user @technicallyweb3 has garnered more than 101,000 views and exposes an issue the driver believes is all too common among Hyundai vehicles.
His girlfriend bought their Hyundai brand new in 2014. “She got the maintenance package. She’s been into the dealership anytime there’s an issue. Dealership oil change, dealership brakes,” he explains. But on this ill-fated trip, roughly 450 km from their destination, the vehicle’s power abruptly dropped, preventing acceleration. The couple pulled over to the distressing sound of a “hard, hard knock” emanating from the engine.
@technicallyweb3 We’re #stranded up north, our #Huyndai blew up close to our destination. #EngineFailure #HuyndaisAntSafe #Recall #TransportationCanada #EngineKnock #DoBetter ♬ original sound – Technically Web3
Recall concerns and legal actions
The car’s failure occurred just 11,000 km past the warranty limit. While investigating, the driver stumbled upon a recall associated with Hyundai engines. “I come to find out that the issues we experienced were exactly in line with what people were saying for the recall,” he reveals. A class action lawsuit against Hyundai for engine reliability issues further supported his suspicions. When contacted, Hyundai informed the couple that engine warranties had been extended indefinitely due to the case.
Despite such a concession, the couple was left stranded, facing over $2,000 in towing expenses to return their vehicle to a dealership for inspection. They lamented the lack of communication from Hyundai about these known issues. “How is it that we were the owners of these vehicles and had no idea?” the user asks, imploring Hyundai to “do better.”
Hyundai’s troubled track record
According to Forbes, Hyundai’s recall issues extend beyond this TikTok user’s grievances. According to Forbes, Hyundai and its affiliate Kia, both under Hyundai Motor Group, have recently been grappling with a series of recalls. Over 3.3 million vehicles were recalled due to fluid leaks that might cause engine fires, urging owners to park their vehicles outside and away from buildings. Other recalls were related to faulty anti-lock brake systems and concerns about oil pumps overheating.
The duo’s woes haven’t started or ended there in Canada, or even with expensive physical parts like engines. The city of Chicago and 16 others are suing both Kia and Hyundai. The lawsuit alleges a lack of specific security technology in their vehicles, leading to a car theft crisis. A method popularized on TikTok is purportedly being used to exploit these vulnerabilities. Responding to these allegations, the automakers defended themselves by attributing the rise in thefts to city policing policies and other social factors rather than flaws in their car models.
A call for accountability
The TikTok user’s harrowing tale, combined with the recent recalls and legal troubles, puts Hyundai and Kia under scrutiny. Fortunately for this TikToker, due to the class action suit, their Hyundai’s warranty on their engine was extended through the lifetime of the vehicle. Customers continue to urge for better communication, transparency, and, most importantly, safer and more reliable vehicles. The plea is clear: Automakers should prioritize their customers’ safety and well-being above all else.