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Hyundai, AAA team up amid skyrocketing thefts

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  • Staff Report 

Hyundai has teamed up with AAA to tackle a surge in thefts of the automaker’s vehicles, which has led to some major insurance companies refusing coverage for Hyundai owners. AAA has stepped in to provide support for affected customers, ensuring they receive the assistance they need.

The recent spate of thefts has been linked to social media “challenges” on TikTok, where individuals break into Hyundai cars, remove the steering wheel column, and use a USB to “hotwire” them. These vehicles have been used in “smash and grab” incidents in the region.

In response, Hyundai plans to introduce anti-theft devices for customers, with the aim of reducing vehicle theft. Once these measures are in place, AAA will offer insurance coverage for these vehicles. The theft problem mainly affects certain Hyundai models manufactured between 2010 and 2021.

Elliott Rizzo, an Insurance Advisor with AAA, explained that Hyundai is addressing the gap between consumers and anti-theft devices by rolling out new anti-theft measures. Owners of the affected models will need to purchase a steering wheel lock and obtain a software update. AAA believes these steps will resolve the theft issue. Hyundai dealerships will soon contact owners about the software update and reimburse them for steering wheel locks.

Rizzo emphasized that AAA is focusing on meeting members’ insurance needs by putting the risk aspect aside. Although similar thefts have impacted Kia drivers, there is no information yet on AAA coverage for those vehicles. For more information, customers should contact their local AAA branch.