Electrical fire risk prompts Kia Niro hybrid recall

October 8, 2018

Kia last week said that it will recall two of its hybrid models over an electrical issue that the automaker says increases the risk of a fire. 

The recall covers about 27,000 examples of the 2017 and 2018 Kia Niro and Niro Plug-In hybrid hatchbacks. 

MORE: Read our 2018 Kia Niro review

At fault is what Kia called an "inadequate connection" between two electrical components that could increase resistance and generate heat. Kia said that it will instruct its dealers to replace the faulty relay assembly made by automotive supplier LS IS Corporation with a new design manufactured by Panasonic. 

The recall primarily covers 2017 Niro hatchbacks, but the automaker said that some early 2018 models, including the Niro Plug-In Hybrid, were built with the LS IS-supplied part. Cars with the overheating-prone part were built from November 2016 through mid-September 2017. Kia said that about 1 percent of the vehicles fitted with the part are likely to experience the issue, but that it will replace the relay assembly in every affected Niro. 

Kia said that it will begin alerting owners of affected Niros via mail in late November when it has enough replacement parts to begin retrofitting vehicles. No crashes or injuries have been reported as a result of overheating relay components, Kia said in government filings. 

Separately, Kia last week recalled 97 2018 Sorento crossover SUVs to replace a steering column component that the automaker said may come loose.

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