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A sobering thought for automakers circling around today is that gas mileage ratings need to be...

A sobering thought for automakers circling around today is that gas mileage ratings need to be accurate or profits could be pinched. The development comes after Hyundai (HYMLF.PK) and Kia Motor (KIMTF.PK) tell U.S. senators they will allow owners of vehicles with overstated fuel economy ratings until the end of 2013 to file for compensation. The bill for the pair of Asian automakers could topple $100M each.
Comments (11)
  • shawnpaulbpoike
    , contributor
    Comments (8) | Send Message
     
    I will consolidate all the companies under 1 Banner and call the Company GOD= Goodness Over Damnation.
    I am 1
    18 Dec 2012, 08:32 AM Reply Like
  • elroy
    , contributor
    Comments (88) | Send Message
     
    It's time for the US not to accept automakers' certifications for mileage and emissions and only do a random test of the some of the models. The manufacturers should pay for those tests too so that this is not a burden borne by the taxpayer.

     

    Only in that way will the public be fully protected.

     

    Although there are no current laws to do this, companies like Kia and Hyundai that knowingly falsify information should have faced punatitive damages just as the courts prescribe in many cases. Instead, it's too bad -- we got caught -- we won't do it again.

     

    It should be, "Damn right you won't. The fine is $1000 per vehicle the first time and next time it's $10,000 per vehicle and you won't be able to sell any of the affected nameplates for six months."
    18 Dec 2012, 09:03 AM Reply Like
  • Tdot
    , contributor
    Comments (3449) | Send Message
     
    Elroy - not a fan here of Hyundai-Kia, but like it or not, the current system works! Hyundai-Kia were discovered with faulty fuel economy figures as a result of automotive media observations, customer complaints, and independent test results that showed a consistent trend of overly optimistic fuel efficiency.

     

    When confronted, Hyundai-Kia re-examined their test methods and results, and found the problem. A coast-down test, which measures aerodynamic drag, along with tire and brake friction and other chassis and drivetrain losses, was performed incorrectly and the results were misinterpreted. It is true that Hyundai-Kia should have done a much better job of conducting the test correctly, and in recognizing the faulty data before publication. Chances are they had some rookie engineers and managers doing the job, supposedly by the book, but the book was inexact and they screwed up royally on the "bad side" of the results. It could have just as easily gone the other way, with Hyundai-Kia quoting more conservative fuel economy numbers than necessary, and people would be surprised and delighted that they were routinely beating the EPA numbers.

     

    At this time, there is no evidence whatsoever that Hyundai-Kia deliberately and maliciously falsified the fuel economy data and deliberately misled the American public; and the same holds true for the other automakers today. You must be aware that there is a big difference between a procedural or data handling error, and a malicious intent to deceive. And there is a very high probability that those who were involved in the error have been severely dealt with, at least on the Asian side.

     

    Chances are there will be at least one lawsuit against Hyundia-Kia that goes through, where more thorough discovery and revelation of details will bear out the truth. The question is - what is the damage? Who are the victims? There may be several.

     

    One - some Americans were duped into purchasing one car over another because of false fuel economy claims. Those victims should be reimbursed fully for the differences for the life of ownership of the car, perhaps with treble punitive damages.

     

    Two - some competitive automakers lost sales (and profits) directly due to the false fuel economy claims of Hyundai-Kia. Those competitive automakers should be awarded all profits from the manufacturing and sales of the cars, perhaps with treble punitive damages, based on renormalized market share.

     

    Three - some competitive automotive dealerships and salespersons also suffered from lost sales, and should be awarded the lost profits plus treble damages, based on renormalized market share.

     

    Four - some automotive finance firms, such as Ford Credit, also suffered from lost "sales", and should be awarded the lost profits plus treble damages, based on market share losses.

     

    This sort of severe "punishment" for "evildoing" is the sort of thing to deter automakers from being lazy and making mistakes in the first place, never mind deliberately falsifying data.

     

    In the mean time, the last thing this nation needs is more unfunded (or funded) government mandates, based on the current case. The Hyundai-Kia mess is a classic case of The Exception that Proves the Rule: automakers, as a rule, are not "cheating" on fuel economy quotations. If and when there is a discrepancy, it is soon discovered and publicized.

     

    There is no evidence of widespread deception or errors, so there is nothing to be gained by throwing more money at it. If an error (or deception) is discovered, then there should be a proportional penalty such that an automaker cannot profit or gain market share as a result.
    18 Dec 2012, 10:19 AM Reply Like
  • Larry Dickman
    , contributor
    Comments (54) | Send Message
     
    You should do some research into why the ratings were overstated before you jump to conclusions. It was mainly the government's dated, ambiguous, testing procedures that provided the faulty data. And anyone who thinks that these two automakers are the only ones who display overly generous ratings are at least.... naive. If it costs more to provide these (questionable) ratings, who do you think will pay for them? Maybe a little less emotion, a little more economics 101 if you feel the need to contribute.
    18 Dec 2012, 11:49 AM Reply Like
  • bondork
    , contributor
    Comments (25) | Send Message
     
    Driving like an idiot causes poor gas consumption, now blame your stupidity on the car companies
    18 Dec 2012, 09:04 AM Reply Like
  • EdwinJ44
    , contributor
    Comments (60) | Send Message
     
    Elroy...?
    The government is the only way to fully protect the taxpaying public?
    Where the hell have you been? What planet are you from? And LQQk at the iron fist(s) you're wielding for penalties for lying. Lying is part of the fabric of which government is made! They all lie! Your current president lied to get into office so did Clinton and so do they all! Just tell them what they want to hear and you will be elected. Then do whatever the hell you want to do. A married president lies about having sex in the oval office with an intern (and gets away with it) and you want government to fully protect the public? Those comments astound me. What a pathetic point of view! It's no wonder we are in this financial crisis. Idiots voting!
    18 Dec 2012, 09:34 AM Reply Like
  • moran
    , contributor
    Comments (214) | Send Message
     
    So it's ok to lie....is that what you are saying?
    18 Dec 2012, 12:51 PM Reply Like
  • EdwinJ44
    , contributor
    Comments (60) | Send Message
     
    If I need a book written about a simple one paragraph comment I know exactly who I will contact! Thanks Tdot
    18 Dec 2012, 10:38 AM Reply Like
  • orangutan
    , contributor
    Comments (215) | Send Message
     
    Wow. A simple comment about not getting away with faulty mileage data, and everyone's inner angst and rage comes bubbling to the surface.
    18 Dec 2012, 12:58 PM Reply Like
  • EdwinJ44
    , contributor
    Comments (60) | Send Message
     
    Not at all! Lying sucks.
    18 Dec 2012, 02:31 PM Reply Like
  • petten
    , contributor
    Comments (128) | Send Message
     
    Nobody should have to "file" for compensation! They should send every owner a check automatically, like they send recall notices.

     

    The punishment should be more severe than normal to discourage such dishonest practice in the future.
    18 Dec 2012, 02:31 PM Reply Like
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