Burning Batteries Will Cost Hyundai $900 Million

After just over a dozen of its cars caught fire, the automaker issued a recall for electric vehicles built before April 2020 that use the same LG Chem batteries.

    2021/03/03

NSFW    NEW YORK — Bloomberg reports that Hyundai will recall 82,000 electric cars globally to replace their batteries. This comes after more than a dozen reports of fires involving the automaker's Kona SUVs.

The recall is for vehicles built before April 2020 that use the same LG Chem batteries.

Despite the relatively small number of cars involved, this recall is one of the most expensive in history, showing how battery defects could create hefty costs for automakers.

The recall will cost Hyundai 900 million US dollars. On a per-vehicle basis, the average cost is 11,000 dollars — which is a very high number for a recall.

Replacing an entire battery is an extreme measure, requiring a similar amount of work and expense as replacing an entire engine of a gasoline car.

The issue allegedly has to do with the material that separates the battery's cathode and anode.

General Motors recently recalled nearly 70,000 Chevy Bolts that also use LG Chem's batteries, after reports of fires.

News of the recall comes just one day after Hyundai unveiled its Ioniq 5 crossover SUV, which will not use LG Chem batteries.

And in case you were wondering how it looks, here are some pictures of the brand new Hyundai Ioniq 5 electric SUV, which will use a different type of battery.
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