Hyundai, Kia Settle Lawsuits Over Exaggerated Fuel Economy

Hyundai and Kia have come to preliminary settlements over lawsuits about misstated fuel-economy figures for certain 2011-2013 vehicles. The proposed settlements total $395 million and will be fully reviewed by courts in early 2014.

Hyundai and Kia announced in late 2012 that, due to a procedural error, the companies had overstated the fuel-economy ratings of several vehicles. Both Hyundai and Kia issued lower, more accurate fuel-economy stickers, and elected to reimburse affected owners. The reimbursement program would pay owners back for fuel costs based on their region and vehicle mileage, plus an additional 15 percent bonus for the inconvenience. However, after the announcement, 53 separate lawsuits over the economy claims were filed and eventually consolidated into one class-action case.

Under the terms of the settlement, affected Hyundai owners who choose to take part would receive a one-time cash payment option that is expected to average about $353, from a total settlement of $210 million. Customers could also choose to have 150 percent of that value (about $530) as a dealership credit, or 200 percent (approximately $706) as credit toward purchase of a new Hyundai vehicle. Kia's $185 million settlement will result in an average payout of $667 per vehicle owner, which can also be multipled by 150 or 200 percent if the customer desires.

Customers who take the lump-sum payout are not eligible for the previously announce gas reimbursement program, and any previous gas reimbursements payout will be subtracted from the cash payout. However, Hyundai and Kia said some owners found the terms of the reimbursement program, which requires owners to periodically take their cars to dealerships so actual mileage can be verified, too onerous.

As an example, Hyundai said that if the owner of a 2012 Elantra elected to receive the cash payout, he or she would receive about $320 -- minus any gas reimbursements already paid.

The U.S. District Court will announce more details on the settlement in early 2014. More information is available at and

Oliver Brown
Class Action Update: [Part 1 of 2] Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro law firm know that in the same court district a Judge was inclined to grant entry of default against Hyundai for $85 million dollars, and this to a single class member plaintiff.Hyundai-Kia is now proposing only $353 to each class member. A Canadian class action against Hyundai asks for $10 million dollars and $10 Million punitive damages.Along with the deceptive gas mileage claims,Hyundai was also sued in the class action for false advertising, breach of express warranty, fraud, unjust enrichment, reduced resale value, however the proposed settlement by Hyundai appears to offer $353 for the false gas mileage claims ONLY.There is no indication that Hyundai offers damages for false advertising, breach of express warranty, fraud, unjust compensation, and reduced resale value of the vehicle.
Oliver Brown
Class Action Update: [Part 2 of 2] Some plaintiffs may take Hyundai into a jury trial. I believe the proposed settlement should be rejected as too low and bad faith. Hyundai agent Inglewood Police said if you come to a Hyundai dealer for service you will be arrested and thrown in jail. The motion to certify the class is set for Jan. 23 in Los Angeles. If you do not want the payout of $353, you may have to put that in writing and the door may stay open for a jury trial against Hyundai. Next court hearings are Jan. 9 and Jan. 23. If you want to make your voice heard before those dates, and express what you feel class members are due $$$$, write Judge George H. Wu, Phone 213-894-0191, 312 North Spring Street 10th Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90012-4701, and priority mail a copy to the attorneys Hagens, Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP, Phone 213-330-7150,301 N Lake Avenue Suite 203, Pasadena,CA 91101. Mention Case 2:13-ml-2424-GW-FFM.
Oliver Brown
[Re: US Hyundai-Kia Fuel Economy Litigation] [Part 1 of 4] In a Inglewood, California small claims case 12S01314, a Hyundai car owner was able to get a judgment against a Hyundai dealer for $724 including court fees. A Hyundai dealer did not oppose a payout of $10,000 for the single Hyundai owner. This same car owner, by himself, sought $85 million dollars judgment against Hyundai Motor America, Los Angeles Central District case Johnson v Taylor et al. CV13-2264 FMO (MRWx). The proposed settlement by lawyers Hagens Berman Sobol  will give car owners at about $400, less than what the small claims court had already ruled in a similar case worth. Hyundai also sought to pay the $724 themselves, thus bringing the potential value to $1400 for a single plaintiff, and the possibility of engine failure, facts that class action law firm Hagens Berman Sobol has ignored.
Oliver Brown
[Re: US Hyundai-Kia Fuel Economy Litigation] [Part 2 of 4] Hyundai Motor America and Girard Gibbs are also named in a Los Angeles filed bankruptcy case. The State Bar of California and office of the state attorney general has been asked to revoke the license certification of two firms/dealers indirectly connected to the class action. Read the Toyota class action filed 2012 settlement agreement online to get an idea of what will happen if the Hyundai settlement is signed by the Judge. Class members received $30-$125 each, for damages and diminished value, while the CASH COW lawsuit awarded 25 law firms and 85 attorneys attorneys a whopping $227 million dollars (estimated).
Oliver Brown
[Re: US Hyundai-Kia Fuel Economy Litigation] [Part 3 of 4] If the court approves the settlement in 2014, class members may still have the option to opt out of the settlement or go before the court with their grievances. It will be unfortunate if the court does not consider the fraud and retaliation that has already been proven and admitted to by Hyundai Motor America. Is it worth it for car owners to agree to $400 and possible waive their rights to any Hyundai warranty repairs in the further? The best bet may be to get rid of the Hyundai car due to Hyundai’s history of retaliation. Many car owners say they will not buy Hyundai-Kia because of Hyundai’s stated policy that they can deny service and seek your arrest if you seek service at their dealers. [based on documents filed with the court.] Keep in mind that other lawsuits like Johnson v Taylor and the Canadian Class action asked for more per plaintiff.
Oliver Brown
[Re: US Hyundai-Kia Fuel Economy Litigation] [Part 4 of 4] For court updates see websites see under case number 2:13 – ml – 02424 – GW – FFM Hyundai -Kia fuel economy litigation. For updates see “discussion” on YouTube channel “legal advocate 71” or see the website The Hyundai-Kia settlement is "proposed" and the court will review the proposed settlement around Jan 23 2014 . The court will have final approval and the court could reject the settlement agreement and say that is not enough going to the car owners or the court could require the settlement agreement to include an anti-retaliation section.
Oliver Brown
Hyundai-Kia: Jan 5: Did you know that numerous customers reported that dealers told them they would not achieve the stated mileage until they had over a certain amount of miles on the car, say 3500 miles. This intentional practice seems to contradict Hyundai’s contention that their figures were the result of an accident. Seems this case is worth much more than Hyundai-Kia's bad faith offer.
False advertising is against the law, and so they must pay!  They would have sold the same amount of cars, even if they would've told the truth.  Those cars still get great mileage, just not better than the competition.

New Car Research

Find reviews, photos & pricing for:



our instagram

get Automobile Magazine

Subscribe to the magazine and save up to 84% off the newsstand price


new cars

Read Related Articles