The South Korean government is investigating Hyundai and Ssangyong, alleging that the two manufacturers overstated the fuel economy figures on some of their crossovers. But while the initial investigation is being carried out by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, a separate branch of government, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy is supporting the manufacturers' estimates. See Americans, our government isn't the only dysfunctional one.
Hyundai is, understandably, "very confused by the fine and the different results."
The two vehicles that have raised the ire of the transport authorities are the Hyundai Santa Fe and the Ssangyong Korando Sports. Allegedly, the two vehicles overstate their mileage by as much as eight percent. Provided the claim proves true and the two manufacturers are found to have been exaggerating their vehicles' fuel efficiency, Hyundai could be open to fines of as much as one billion Korean won ($985,000 at today's rates). Ssangyong could be facing a smaller punishment of just 200 million won ($197K).
In its own testing, meanwhile, the Industry of Trade, Industry and Energy has found that the fuel economy stated by Hyundai and Ssangnyong and the results of internal testing were within the margin of error, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal, which cites government sources.
Hyundai is, understandably, "very confused by the fine and the different results," the company said in a statement acquired by WSJ. Hopefully, the South Korean government can get its ducks in a row and figure out just who is in the wrong here.
It's worth noting that this isn't Hyundai's first brush with fuel economy overstatement issues. Autoblog regulars will likely remember that Hyundai Motor America endured down a costly and embarrassing fuel economy scandal of its own back in late 2012, and in March of this year, the automaker had to restate efficiency figures on its Korean domestic market Sonata.