Hyundai False MPG Claims Could Prompt Senate Probe

Hyundai False MPG Claims Could Prompt Senate Probe

Some might have expected a small riot after news surfaced that Hyundai inflated its mpg claims on more than 1 million recently sold cars, but the media brouhaha was worse than any other backlash — so far.

That might change very soon. Senator John D. Rockefeller IV, chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee isn’t satisfied and wants to know how Hyundai and Kia will deal with customers whose vehicles were bought under false pretenses. He sent a letter to Hyundai Motors America CEO John Krafcik which warned that the brands could face congressional hearings over the scandal. Representatives from Hyundai and Kia both declined to comment on the letter.

“I will monitor the results of the EPA’s ongoing investigation to better understand how this error occurred, how Hyundai and Kia may have used inflated fuel economy numbers to attract consumers, and how federal enforcement agencies can better deter similar violations in the future,” he said.

SEE ALSO: Hyundai, Kia Sued in US Over Incorrect MPG Claims

Currently, the automakers are offering customers debit cards loaded with an amount meant to compensate for the false mileage claims plus a 15 percent bonus.

“We’ve got eight regions in the country where we check the average fuel price. We look at how many miles you’ve driven and what the difference in your specific car what the fuel economy label was and what it’s been adjusted to,” said Hyundai public relations senior manager Jim Trainor. “Then you get 15 percent on top of that.” The offer is also good for the life of the vehicle.

Moody’s Investor Service predicted that the compensation could cost the company $100 million annually. Still, the company is remaining profitable and if recent sales reports are any indication, both Korean brands will be able to weather the storm with relative ease.

  • Karen

    We just bought Hyundai Elantra yesterday and there was absolutely no mention about MPG from salesman and their website has not been changed to show this either.  We were loyal GM purchasers up until now.  Hope we haven’t made a big mistake.  No wonder they are offering friends and family discounts!

  • mostlyclassics

    IMO, Kia and Hyundai are handling this properly and proactively via the debit card route. They also changed all the Mulroney stickers on the windows of their new cars almost instantly — my Kia dealer had them changed two days after the news broke back in November. So, Karen, the sticker on the window of your new Elantra was undoubtedly correct. Remember, not all Kia and Hyundai models had the wrong mileage stated — just certain models with certain engines and transmissions. The model which took the biggest whack was the Kia Soul with the 2.0 liter engine and the automatic: 6 mpg highway. The sedan models were typically much less: a couple of mpg only.

    You can go here:, and sign up then input your VIN.

    Judging from what I’ve seen, there are a bunch of other manufacturers who have hinky (IMO) mileage numbers, including some GM offerings. I suspect you’re going to see a BUNCH of cars with restated EPA mileages as time goes on.

  • Ldejesus

    i bought a tuson last year mainly on the mpg and style but mpg was way off how do i get in on this suit
    losing a lot of money on gas 14gallon get 230 u do the math!!!

  • Chevyguy1979

    i have a 2013 kia optima sxl and it gets worse mileage than my old volvo 850 about 10 mpg off at highway and about 8 off at city driving i get 330 miles on a 18 gallon tank its unacceptable.

  • Jim Williams

    My 2013 Hyundai Elantra was advertized at 40 mpg highway. EPA claims 38
    mpg. On open highway with little or no breaking at 50-60 mph, I get 31
    mpg. And I’m not happy about it! So far, complaints to my Hyundai dealer
    have gotten me nowhere. I’d be open to suggestions as to what my
    options are.

  • Ageless2

    I am fighting my Hyundai dealer among other things, the mileage lie and the fact that the Elantra is the only car that does not have a spare tire. so, if you get a blow out, road side assistance will take you to the nearest Hyundai and if it is the weekend, you are screwed. If you take it to another tire repair shop, you have to pay the tow and may lose on the warranty.  I am upset with both of these things