South Korean car maker Hyundai has recalled the Kona Electric for the second time in as many months, this time to update the software to remedy a braking system issue.
Owners of the car maker’s popular electric crossover received an email on Friday requesting appointments be made with service centres to update the software for the “Integrated Electronic Brake” (IEB).
“Hyundai is recalling certain Hyundai Kona Electric vehicles produced between August 27th 2018 and November 5th 2020,” said the email which was sighted by The Driven.
“The subject vehicles are equipped with an Integrated Electronic Brake (IEB) system that might illuminate the malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) and significantly reduce braking performance upon detection of an abnormal sensor signal.
“Reduced braking power could extend the vehicle’s stopping distance and increase the risk of a crash. Ensure caution is taken while driving.”
Hyundai Australia confirmed with The Driven that 1,072 vehicles in total have been affected by the recall. Of these, 1,048 vehicles are Hyundai Kona Electrics.
A small number are hydrogen-powered Hyundai Nexos are also affected by the recall, but all are owned by Hyundai with 20 out of the 24 in total set aside for the ACT hydrogen station trial.
Some owners have complained in Kona Electric forums about having to arrange another software update so soon after the November recall, which was to address a battery issue which had resulted in fires in some vehicles overseas.
“Another Kona EV recall!!!! We have just received a recall for the Integrated Electronic Brake software,” said a member of the Hyundai EV enthusiast’s club on Facebook.
“What is going on with Hyundai and Kona EVs? More inconvenience! Surely this could have been planned to coincide with battery recall?”
Unfortunately, Hyundai electric cars do not have the same ability to update over-the-air as electric vehicles made by other car makers.
And there are no plans to add the ability, at least not in the near future.
A spokesperson for Hyundai Australia confirmed with The Driven that the 2021 Kona Electric will not have the feature.
“Currently we have no plans to introduce over-the-air updates and this function won’t be added to the 2021 Kona Electric refresh,” the spokesperson said in a note by email.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.