ROCK ISLAND, Ill. — Thieves are targeting Kia and Hyundais across the country. The trend continues to afflict the Quad Cities region as well.
Rock Island Police say 74 total Kia and Hyundai cars were stolen in 2022 alone, more than any other kind.
According to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, certain models of Kia and Hyundai cars are easier to break into because they don't have electronic immobilizers. This piece of equipment prevents someone from bypassing the ignition.
Adding the immobilizer is standard for cars today, but Kia and Hyundai models made between 2015 and 2019 don't have them. This means that all a thief has to do is break a piece off of the steering wheel in order to start a car.
Jessica Overmire of Carbon Cliff says that just three weeks after purchasing her 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe, it was stolen from her driveway while her children played in the driveway.
"How could they steal it? I still have the key. You know, that didn't really make any sense," said Overmire. "Luckily they just took it and left and didn't bother with the kids."
Hyundai did say that they are going to be offering safety kits which cost $170.
Insurance companies like Progressive and State Farm stopped providing new policies for certain Hyundai and Kia models. Basically, the insurance company considers those models too easy to steal.
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