I bought a brand new 2015 Hyundai Sonata in the fall of 2014. In the summer of 2016, with only 33,000 miles on the engine, it failed. If failed in the same manner that the 2011-2014 models failed and were recalled for.
Here’s the problem: When I had it towed to a Hyundai dealership to get the engine replaced (not only was it under warranty, but I had the EXTENDED warranty), the warranty company refused the repair, claiming it was an owner’s maintenance issue.
When I offered to show them my maintenance records, they refused to accept them.
I had to go to arbitration with the BBB (which was paid for by Hyundai), and was denied again. For two years I’ve been making payments on tis car in my garage, hoping that it will be recalled, which I think it will be, but only because now they’re also bursting into flames, generating a lot of press.
I recently received an “Important Produce Improvement Campaign” related to my car…
LIMP HOME MODE
Hyundai has created a software update to help the car notify the driver that the engine is failing, and it will allow you to go into “Limp Home Mode” (I didn’t make that up) to permit you to drive your vehicle to a safe location with lower acceleration and speed. If you park in a safe spot, presumably so you can let the fire burn in an out-of-the way parking lot so you don’t make the nightly news. The car will show a Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL).
Also, there’s a WARNING: (in bold) “If you ignore the blinking MIL and continue to drive your vehicle in Limp Home Mode for an extended number of miles, your vehicle may eventually experience SEVER ENGINE DAMAGE and/or STALLING.” (That sure sounds like a warning that the failure would be your fault, doesn’t it? You’d have to share some of the liability because you LIMPED home too far away.
Now how does THAT fit into their defense that the engines are safe? They didn’t develop this “enhancement” for other models of cars, so there must be something unique about my Sonata. Did any TUCSON owners get something similar in the mail?
So this is what I’m hearing from Hyundai…
When your Sonata engine failed, it wasn’t our fault. It was YOUR fault because you didn’t put oil in it often enough. But even though it’s NOT our fault, we’ve gone ahead and developed a software “enhancement” to let other people, like you, know when THEIR engine is about to fail (not that it would, because there’s nothing wrong with the engine!)
IF you get the enhancement installed, BE CAREFUL because it DOESN’T STOP THE ENGINE FROM FAILING!, it just gives you a little heads up that it MIGHT fail soon (because none of the other guages in your car indicate anything is wrong-- when mine failed the temperature wasn’t even running hot). Also, if it’s about to fail, we’re going to disable the car, just a little bit, so it won’t accelerate on the highway, or even go very fast, but we’re sure that won’t be a problem for you. (You know, there’s nothing safer than driving on a highway slower than the rest of the traffic!)
As usual, SHARE THIS wither everybody you know! Share it with the lawyers you talk to about your issue. Share it with every one of your friends that drives a HYUNDAI, and especially the Tucson and Sonatas. EVERY SONATA OWNER should call the company to say, “WTF”?
On a positive note, I used my disabled Sonata in my garage to hide my kids’ XMAS presents… So there’s that.