Why Milwaukee Thieves Are Going Crazy For Hyundais and Kias

The city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin is facing an epidemic – stolen vehicles. And the thieves have a clear favorite – Hyundais and Kias. While total vehicle thefts are up in general 172%, reports say Hyundai thefts were up by 1,715% and Kia thefts up 3,183%. There have been 2,949 stolen vehicles. Kia made up 973 of them while there were 947 missing Hyundais.

While it’s not certain why the South Korean brands are being targeted, it’s speculated that it’s due to the vehicles hot having an engine immobilizer, causing the alarm not to sound when the rear windows are broken. Once thieves are in, they peel back the cover of the steering column and start the car with their tool of choice.

Local authorities say the crime wave is being fueled by children, with half of the suspects being under the age of 16. The city is trying to get a hold of the situation however, Hyundai and Kia have said their vehicles meet or exceed all federal standards, and that their products would come standard with engine immobilizers starting with the 2022 model year. Both automakers have also been distributing steering-wheel locks to any owners that live, work, or go to school in the city of Milwaukee. 

Hyundai has said customers with questions can call the Milwaukee Police Department.

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