South Korea's top auto group Hyundai faces the recall of more than 170,000 vehicles at home and probably about 1.3 million units in the United States to fix faulty engine parts, dealing a blow to its campaign aimed at recouping losses last year.
At home, Hyundai Motor and its affiliate Kia Motors will begin recalling 171,348 vehicles in five different models -- Grandeur (HG) and the Sonata (YF), K7 (VG) and K5 (TF) sedans as well as Sportage (SL) sport-utility vehicles, all produced before August 2013, the transport ministry said.
The recall will begin on May 22 and the vehicles in question are equipped with Theta 2-liter turbo and 2.4-liter gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines which showed a problem involving in crankshafts and bearings which can cause them to stall.
In the United States, Hyundai and Kia are in talks with transport authorities on the possible recall of about 1.3 million vehicles due to a different problem in the same engines.
Hit by heavy discounting in the US market, higher costs caused by strikes at home and sluggish sales in emerging markets, Hyundai Motor's global sales in 2016 were down 2.1 percent on-year.
This year, the company faces a gloomy situation mainly due to falling sales, growing competition and anti-Korean sentiment in China. In March, Hyundai and Kia saw combines sales in China slump 52 percent on-year. China accounted for over a quarter of their total overseas sales, but South Korean brands face consumer boycotts caused by the deployment of a US missile shield.
Lim Chang-won = firstname.lastname@example.org