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Kia America Issues Recall for Nearly 463,000 Telluride SUVs Over Fire Hazard Concerns


In a proactive move to address potential safety risks, Kia America has initiated a recall of nearly 463,000 Telluride SUVs, urging owners to park their vehicles outdoors and away from structures until necessary repairs are completed.

The recall pertains to Telluride models spanning from the years 2020 to 2024, totaling 462,869 vehicles. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the issue revolves around the front power seat motor, which may overheat due to a stuck slide knob, posing a fire hazard both when the vehicle is parked and in motion.

Documents released by the NHTSA on Friday revealed that Kia made the decision to recall the affected vehicles on May 29. This action followed reports of one under-seat fire and six incidents of localized melting in the seat tilt motor, occurring between August 2022 and March 2024. Fortunately, there have been no reported injuries, accidents, or fatalities associated with the issue thus far.

The recall report highlights that external impact to the front power seat side cover or seat slide knob can cause internal misalignment, leading to overheating during continuous operation. Signs of the problem include difficulty adjusting the power seat, as well as the presence of a burning or melting odor, or smoke emanating from underneath the seat.

To rectify the issue, Kia dealers will install a bracket for the power seat switch back covers and replace the seat slide knobs at no expense to owners. However, until repairs are completed, owners are advised to park their vehicles outside and away from buildings as a precautionary measure.

Notification letters to affected owners are scheduled to be dispatched starting July 30, with dealer notification preceding this by a few days. Despite requests for comment from The Associated Press, Kia America, headquartered in Irvine, California, has yet to respond regarding the delayed notification timeline.

In the interim, drivers can verify if their specific vehicle is subject to the recall and access additional information through the NHTSA website or Kia’s recall lookup platform.

This recall is the latest in a series of safety actions impacting Kia Telluride owners. In March, Kia America announced the recall of over 427,000 Telluride SUVs from the same model years due to a defect that could lead to unintended vehicle movement while parked.

The automotive industry has seen heightened scrutiny over safety issues, with Kia and Hyundai previously issuing recalls for millions of vehicles due to the risk of engine compartment fires. Delays in repair initiatives have raised concerns among drivers and consumer safety advocates, highlighting the importance of swift and effective recall responses to mitigate potential hazards.