In response to increasing thefts targeting its vehicles without push-button ignitions and immobilizing anti-theft devices in the United States, Hyundai and Kia have introduced a free anti-theft software upgrade to restrict the unauthorized operation of vehicle ignition systems on specific models.
Hyundai Software Upgrade:
Hyundai, which launched its service campaign this week, is first offering a software upgrade to car owners with the following vehicle models:
2017 – 2020 Elantra
2015 – 2019 Sonata
2020 – 2021 Venue
The free upgrade will be performed by Hyundai dealers and will take less than one hour to install. Following completion of the upgrade, each vehicle will be affixed with window decals to alert would-be thieves that the vehicle is equipped with enhanced anti-theft technology.
Hyundai Steering Wheel Lock Giveaway:
In addition to the software upgrade, the Baltimore County Police Department is assisting Hyundai Motor Company in distributing free steering wheel locks to Baltimore County residents. The locks are available to residents who own a Hyundai manufactured between 2016 and 2021 that do not have a proximity key entry (key fob) or a push-button start. To qualify for a steering wheel lock, residents must provide a copy of their vehicle registration to the Baltimore County Police Department. The information can be emailed to the Baltimore County Police at Wheellockprogram@baltimorecountymd.gov. If a resident does not have access to a computer, they may contact 410-887-2210 for assistance. Registration is required since supplies are limited. Emails must be received by Tuesday, February 28, 2023.
Baltimore County Police Chief Dennis Delp said, “Similar to other municipalities across Maryland, Baltimore County has seen a crime trend involving theft of certain Hyundai brand vehicles. In response, the police department has launched this public safety campaign in partnership with Hyundai.” Delp added, “Protecting those who live, work and visit Baltimore County is our top priority, and this campaign is one way we can achieve that.” The Baltimore County Police Department would like to thank Hyundai Motor Company for providing this assistance to our residents.
Kia Software Upgrade:
Kia owners with questions may contact 1-800-333-4542 (4Kia). In addition, a special section of the Owner’s Portal at Kia.com has been published for owners to research software upgrade eligibility and availability at https://owners.kia.com/us/en/kia-owner-portal.htm
Kia Steering Wheel Lock Giveaway:
Information to obtain a steering wheel lock for a Kia is available at the following link https://owners.kia.com/us/en/kia-owner-portal.htm