Kia has issued a recall for nearly 87,000 Forte vehicles from the 2014 model year. According to documents posted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (PDF), those vehicles could be at risk of catching fire.
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The problem with the 2014 Kia Forte stems from a cooling fan resistor manufactured by Halla Visteon Climate Control Corp. Based on the various fixes proposed by the automaker (more on that in a second), the resistor seems to suffer from a dodgy fuse unit, glitchy software, or both. Due to those underlying problems, the resistor can overheat and melt, creating a fire hazard.
The recall affects Forte models equipped with 1.8-liter and 2.0-liter engines that were manufactured between December 5, 2012 and April 17, 2014. All told, Kia estimates that the recall will affect some 86,880 vehicles registered in the U.S.
Kia says that it will begin mailing recall notices to owners no later than February 25, 2015. After receiving those notices, owners can take their vehicles to a Kia dealer, who will perform one of the following repairs:
Owners of vehicles produced from December 5, 2012 to January 27, 2014 will have the cooling fan resistor and multi-fuse unit replaced. Owners of vehicles produced from January 28, 2014 to April 17, 2014 will have only the multi-fuse unit replaced. Owners of vehicles with the 1.8L engine will further have the engine control unit software updated.
Repairs will be carried out at no charge to owners.
If you believe that you own one of the vehicles included in this recall, you're encouraged to contact Kia customer service at 800-333-4542 and ask about recall #SC113. If you like, you can also contact NHTSA at 888-327-4236 and inquire about safety campaign #15V015000.