As a city we have long known and have been dealing with the ongoing issues presented by Kia and Hyundai vehicles. Namely, that many of their vehicle models are easy targets for car thieves. Over time it has become increasingly clear that this is not just a Milwaukee issue, and yesterday’s news that Progressive and State Farm have dropped some older Hyundai and Kia vehicles due to their lack of anti-theft features only emphasizes that solutions are needed now.
Both insurance companies have acknowledged that in recent years these vehicles have been reported stolen at alarming rates, and far too often these stolen cars are involved in reckless driving incidents and crashes that are taking a toll on neighborhoods and victims across our city and others.
We have both written letters to Kia and Hyundai urging them to take swift action to address this issue that has served as a drain on police resources and hampered quality of life in Milwaukee. Last year, in a response to nationwide issues, Hyundai began offering security kits that could be installed at a local dealership. These kits start at $170 without factoring in charges for installation. This attempt to push the cost onto the user was unsatisfactory at best, and we have both called for these security kits to be free for vehicle owners.
Kia and Hyundai have – through their own negligence – caused harm to unwitting residents and to the City of Milwaukee. Frankly, we believe the city should seriously consider suing them both!
Once again in light of recent news, we are asking both Kia and Hyundai to step up and provide a long-term, effective, and free solution to the ongoing issues caused by their cars. Our residents deserve nothing less.