Steve Berman, a lawyer representing affected vehicle owners in the lawsuit, said that he and his team had sought to reach a settlement that would cover many types of losses, “from those who were lucky enough to have never had their theft-prone car stolen, to those whose stolen cars were totaled completely due to Hyundai and Kia’s negligence.”
The settlement, which awaits the approval of a federal judge, could be valued at roughly $200 million, “depending on how many customers elect to participate,’’ the auto manufacturers said in a statement. They said the agreement would set aside up to $145 million for out-of-pocket losses that owners faced.
Hyundai and Kia said in a statement on Thursday that they would also reimburse owners for insurance deductibles, increased insurance premiums and other theft-related losses. The manufacturers operate independently, but Hyundai is the parent company of Kia Motors.
“We appreciate the opportunity to provide additional support for our owners who have been impacted by increasing and persistent criminal activity targeting our vehicles,” Jason Erb, chief legal officer of Hyundai Motor North America, said in a statement. “Customer security remains a top priority, and we’re committed to continuing software upgrade installations and steering wheel lock distribution to help prevent thefts.”