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2013 Kia Rio Sedan Auto 1.6 Turbo // 2020 Sportage LX FWD
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I just disassembled the back of a key switch (from a 2013 Rio) and without going into too much detail, yes, they are very, very easy to steal. (It is not at all necessary to disassemble, only to be able to reach it). I am going to do some more research about how the steering wheel lock operates and update. But I am almost positive once the "key switch is turned" (coded language) that the electronic steering wheel lock disengages. This would make it far easier to steal then a 90's model Honda.

I highly recommend a hidden fuel pump switch that will prevent this
 

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2016 Sorento LX 3.3L V6 AWD, 2012 Soul !
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160 Posts
Discussion Starter · #42 ·

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2016 Sorento LX 3.3L V6 AWD, 2012 Soul !
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Discussion Starter · #43 ·

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2018 Kia Sorento 2.4L L4 LX AWD
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I went to take my son to school yesterday, and found the driver side door handle was stuck in a pulled out position, on my 2018 Sorento. On further inspection, they removed the plastic cover where the key goes, and punched the lock cylinder in. Nothing was missing, so I can only assume they were unable to get in. I'm in an apartment complex, and started checking the cars around me. Lexus, No. Mercedes, No. BMW, No. Tesla, No... then I saw my neighbors Sportage. They tried to rip the lock cover off, but looks like they stopped. That was the only damage on her car. I have nothing of value in the car, and nothing visible. I was racking my brain, on why the only cars hit were Kia's. Now I know why. Luckily, they couldn't get in, otherwise, my car probably would have been gone. I am kinda surprised they didn't break the window. Why go through the trouble of trying to punch the lock cylinder in, when you can just break the window, and take the car for a ride. I only have 2 months left on my lease, and I will no longer be trading it in for another Kia. The lack of concern by Hyundai on this issue is crazy.

Question... I was looking to test how easy this would be. I couldn't get the key out of my fob, so I pulled the battery out. My car started right up. Would pulling the battery disable the chip from being read? Or do I really need to separate the key from the fob to truly test this?
Automotive lighting Motor vehicle Hood Automotive design Door
 

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2016 Kia Sorento LX AWD 2.4L / Titanium
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Quick question - is this problem primarily related to 'push-button start' vehicles? Or does it affect all Kia's, even those with traditional ignition key tumblers (twist-start)?

UPDATE: I just re-read the thread, and the keyed cars appear to be just plain easy to steal due to no interlock/chip in the key/fob being utilized (aka: gain access, crack the column and cross some wires - GONE!) So that's where my risk lies. I guess I'm curious to know now, whether the push-button versions have a hole in their 'armor' as well, that anyone's experienced.

Thx.

-SM2016
 

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2020 Sorento SX, 3.3L AWD
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Why is it that the Kia doesn't show up on the top ten most commonly stolen cars?




Wheel Tire Car Vehicle Automotive design
 

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2016 Sorento LX 3.3L V6 AWD, 2012 Soul !
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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
Probably because those articles are old. Also, the rash of KIA thefts still seems to be a bit regional at this point, with some comunities (like Milwaukee) FAR exceeding nationwide averages. So far.

Either way, if you have a modern kia or hyudai that doesn't have a pushbutton start (ie, no smart key), you need to beware. Buy a steering wheel lock (not a perfect solution, but COULD possibly be a visual deterrent), watch where you park, etc etc etc.

My Sorento has a pushbutton start, so I'm OK. But my wife's SOUL has a regular key. Which is a problem, until the thieves try to get away. She has a stick shift :)
 

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2020 Sorento SX
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Probably because those articles are old. Also, the rash of KIA thefts still seems to be a bit regional at this point, with some comunities (like Milwaukee) FAR exceeding nationwide averages. So far.

Either way, if you have a modern kia or hyudai that doesn't have a pushbutton start (ie, no smart key), you need to beware. Buy a steering wheel lock (not a perfect solution, but COULD possibly be a visual deterrent), watch where you park, etc etc etc.

My Sorento has a pushbutton start, so I'm OK. But my wife's SOUL has a regular key. Which is a problem, until the thieves try to get away. She has a stick shift :)
No car is impossible to steal. Your only hope is to make your car more difficult so they will more on to the next.
 

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2020 Sorento SX, 3.3L AWD
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My Sorento has a pushbutton start, so I'm OK. But my wife's SOUL has a regular key. Which is a problem, until the thieves try to get away. She has a stick shift :)
I'm not sure you've read all the articles on the smartkey and auto thefts! The popular thing for auto thefts nowadays is to be close to a person locking their car with the smartkey and sniffing the signal so you can clone it. This allows you to not only unlock the car, but also get in and drive it away!


 

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2016 Sorento LX 3.3L V6 AWD, 2012 Soul !
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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
Yes, I am aware of relay attacks and such, but that's not the point of this thread. I was poinitng out how many freaking KIA's were (and are) being stolen because the models without the smart keys are just SOOOOOOO easy to steal. The numbers here in Milwaukee are astonishing. My vehicle (with the smart key) is not theftproof. But it's not the model of car these thieves (mostly kids) are after.

Typically, the Kias being stolen here are taken by stupid kids who want an easy theft, a joy ride, and the vehicles are often found on the North side of town completely trashed.
 

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2015 Sorento SX AWD
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I believe the Canadian builds all have immobilizers. My Sante Fe 2008 mentioned it in the owners manual. I believe the two sorentos also have that. But as said it another layer to get across and both these are Push to Start which like enables the immobilizer normally.
 

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2017 Sorento SX V6 AWD, 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Turbo, 2002 Honda S2000
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2020 Sorento SX, 3.3L AWD
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There are lower trim levels without pushbutton start I would expect. Cars with PB start all have immobilizers.
 

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Sorento LX V6 2018
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I'm really surprised that the keyed ignitions don't have an immobilizer. Every Honda I've owned since 1997 had one, my 2003 Toyota has one and just about any modern car I've ever rented had one - all with keyed ignitions. Seems cheap to do so why not? Probably makes insurance a little less expensive for the owner as well. Strange place to try and save a few bucks on a lower trim model.
 

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I'm really surprised that the keyed ignitions don't have an immobilizer. Every Honda I've owned since 1997 had one, my 2003 Toyota has one and just about any modern car I've ever rented had one - all with keyed ignitions. Seems cheap to do so why not? Probably makes insurance a little less expensive for the owner as well. Strange place to try and save a few bucks on a lower trim model.
True, and I know my 2000 Audi A6 and my 2005 Nissan 350Z both had an immobilizer. The 2013 Nissan Rogue my wife drives also has an immobilizer, and it's sort of a key ignition. You turn the key holder, but you don't have to put the smartkey into it.
 

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2016 Sorento LX 3.3L V6 AWD, 2012 Soul !
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Discussion Starter · #58 ·
Here's a fun update as to how freaking bad this is in Milwaukee:


I am very very glad I have a sorento with a pushbutton (ie, my vehicle has an immobilizer). Even so, I did purchase a decent steering-wheel club as a possible visual deterrent in case my vehicle gets targeted by stupid thieves that maybe don't see my pushbutton or whatever.

It's just unbelievably bad here for KIA owners that don't have immobilizers.

There is a glimmer of hope, at least FUTURE Kias will all be good. But sadly does nothing for the owners of pre-2022 vehicles.

.
 

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2015 Sorento SX AWD
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Canadian build will have immobilizer built in. I had a 2008 Sante Fe 3.3L AWD and it had it as well. I guess you have to ask for it and maybe dealers will push for them there!!! Knowone wants their rides stolen.
 

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2013 Kia Soul
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I'm seeing many reports that crooks have caught on that it's easy to steal Kias using only a USB cable.


Has anyone heard of anything Kia is doing to recall the locks and make this right for people?
 
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