Look at this video. ....
I've seen that video before, but watched it again because I didn't remember everything that was said. First off, there certainly was damage in that engine, no question about that. But, as with all of the seized engines, this cylinder damage comes right back to the same old story of no definitive root cause being identified. And, going along with the root cause, why aren't even more engines failing (or having similar cylinder damage) if there is a systemic defect?
But I will say that something I didn't take note of previously in that video did jump out at me this time. The guy did a bit of rambling speculation on why the cylinder damage might have happened, and one of the things he said was along the lines that 'the engine might have not been warmed up long enough before driving'.
I got to thinking about that a bit, and now I'm wondering if there could possibly be a smoking gun related to that idea. I think everyone can agree that warming up an engine is one of the least consistent and predictable aspects of owning a vehicle. Some people drive within a second or two of starting up, others let it idle for 5 minutes before driving, and everything in between those 2 extremes as well.
So, what if these Kia/Hyundai engines with a history of failure, have something about their design which can result in internal damage if not sufficiently warmed up before being pushed? (more so than other makes) No big damage coming from any one start, just a cumulative thing that takes it's toll over time. And there's also some variables in there as well. If someone only lets it warm for a few seconds, but then drives slowly at low RPMs at first, that might be no different than a 30-45 second stationary warm up. And the flip side to that would be someone who warms up the engine for 30 seconds to a minute, but then immediately jumps onto a highway and takes it up to 70 MPH. So there are a number of potential ways to stress out an engine before it's ready to be loaded up.
And one other thing that ties into this idea is that so many Canadian owners seem to feel their Kia engines have abnormal noise, and it's a fact that Canada has consistently cold Winter temps. The one thing about this theory that I like is that it could tend to explain why the failures are seemingly so erratic and haphazard - no pattern that anyone (outside of Kia and Hyundai) has been able to identify.
Well, this is all just another bit of speculation, to go along with the other 25 or so that are currently floating around. And another theory brings us no closer to the actual cause of the failures - just more spinning the wheels.