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Korean automakers Hyundai and Kia have admitted to overstating fuel mileage claims on most of their models over the past three years, and will now be forced to pay back car owners for their embarrassing error.

Both automakers will begin to retrofit their cars with new window stickers immediately, that reduce the fuel consumption ratings by up to 6 mpg depending on the vehicle model. The companies are being forced to reimburse around 900,000 customers, for the entire lifetime that they own the vehicle. The reimbursement amount will be based on the mileage of the vehicle, and will attempt to pay back money that the owners would have saved if the fuel mileage rating was originally correct. Additionally, Hyundai and Kia will add on 15 percent to help compensate for the inconvenience this has caused.

As an example, if you own a 2012 Kia Soul Eco that has been driven 15,000 miles, and you are paying an average of $3.90 for a liter of gasoline, the company will have to reimburse you around $285. The reimbursement depends on the average gas price in your area, as well as the mpg adjustment, which in the case of the 2012 Kia Soul Eco, was lowered by 4 mpg combined. After the first payment is received, customers can re-visit the dealership as often as they’d like to have there mileage re-checked. They will then be compensated for the extra miles they have tacked on to the odometer.

An audit by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) revealed that the brands turned in numbers that did not match their own test results on these cars, and an investigation is now being launched into all of the automakers vehicles.

Hyundai and Kia claim that the error was unintentional, and have already issued a public apology. The brand’s will run full-page newspaper and digital ads starting this coming Sunday to inform the public of the error.

For more information on the models affected, you can visit www.kiampginfo.com, or www.hyundaimpginfo.com.

See the complete story on the Hyundai/Kia Fuel Economy Numbers at AutoGuide.com
 

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I find it hard to believe the error was unintentional. How hard can it be to test your vehicles to find out the correct number? I bet this was done to help with sales, either to keep up with competitors or be a bit better than them. After all MPG ratings do factor into someone's buying decision.
 
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