Hyundai Motor was fined $17.35 million in the United States for delaying the recall for its Genesis models in the market.
According to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Korean carmaker delayed the recall on 43,500 Genesis sedans from the model years 2009-2012 for a brake defect that can corrode the braking system.
Hyundai Motor knew about the potential problem in 2012, but issued a recall in October 2013 after the government opened an investigation into the matter, the U.S. safety agency said.
|Hyundai Motor America CEO David Zuchowski (Bloomberg)|
Under the U.S. federal law, carmakers are required to report safety-related defects to the NHTSA within five days.
The carmaker said that most of the Genesis models recalled have been repaired and there have been no fatalities or serious injuries related to the defect.
“Hyundai remains committed to making safety our top priority, and is dedicated to ensuring immediate action in response to potential safety concerns, including the prompt reporting of safety defects,” Hyundai Motor America CEO David Zuchowski said in a statement.
“In order to mitigate a situation like this in the future, Hyundai is instituting new organizational and process improvements, and enhancing the ability of the U.S. leadership team to readily respond to regulatory reporting requirements.”
Hyundai also agreed with NHTSA to improve the ways it identifies and reports safety defects to the U.S. authorities.
Under a new set of guidelines, the U.S. unit of Hyundai Motor will make decisions regarding the need for a safety recall in the U.S market independently, without approval from its headquarters in Seoul.
A new U.S.-based technical committee will be created to review and decide upon potential safety recalls. The committee has direct access to the board of directors of Hyundai Motor America and Zuchowski.
Hyundai will also meet with NHTSA officials on a monthly basis for one year following the execution of the agreement, the company said.
By Lee Ji-yoon and news reports