Hyundai Cars Face Federal Safety Probe Despite Consumer Appeal

Some Hyundai cars are now under a federal probe for safety and possible recall due to airbag issues. These are the same issues that have plagued other automakers recently, with the Hyundai cars to be included in this probe being from the 2006 to 2008 model years. Some 394,000 Hyundai cars, mostly Sonata midsize sedans, may be included.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says that the Hyundai cars in question have been the subject of 83 complaints. The issue may be with a sensor in the seat belt mechanism of the Hyundai cars that can cause the air bags to malfunction and fail to deploy in the event of a crash. The problem can happen with either front seat in the car (driver or passenger), but in most cases it triggered an airbag warning light on the dashboard so the issue was caught before an accident.

Hyundai is cooperating with the NHTSA on the probe into its cars. This is a far larger investigation than the previous recall which affected only 58,000 Elantra Touring cars in the United States and Canada from 2010 to 2012. That recall of Hyundai cars was due to a support bracket in the interior headliner displacing during side curtain airbag deployment.

Hyundai cars now join several automakers in similar probes and recalls by the NHTSA so far this year.

This latest news about Hyundai cars comes after the annual J.D. Powers APEAL Study found that Hyundai vehicles are some of the most appealing, non-premium branded vehicles on the market. The Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout (APEAL) Study is one of the most-anticipated studies J.D. Power releases every year. New car owners rate their vehicles on 77 different metrics, as reported by J.D. Power and WebProNews. Hyundai consistently ranks highly on J.D. Power surveys, as this Inquisitr article noted.

As for the federal probe, the Hyundai cars affected have not been subjected to recall and may not be, depending on the outcome of the investigation. Hyundai may voluntarily recall the Sonatas affected without an NHTSA requirement, as is usually the case, if the probe into the Hyundai cars appears to be able to find serious fault.

Although the investigation is ongoing, it’s likely that a verdict for the Hyundai cars affected will be found soon.