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The issue with people stealing Kia and Hyundai models is getting even worse as reckless behavior increases. The Kia Boys have started a trend by showing how easy it is to steal certain Kia and Hyundai models, and now the vehicles are being used in larger crimes. 

Stolen Kia models are crashing into storefronts 

The 2023 Kia Soul driving on the street
2023 Kia Soul | Kia

People are already struggling with stolen Kia and Hyundai models as the Kia Boys show how easy it is to take older models. 

This trend spread on TikTok like wildfire, leading to kids between the ages of 12 and 17 taking cars for joy rides. 

The kids, including young boys and girls, are driving vehicles like they stole them because they are literally committing motor vehicle theft. 

Kids are being arrested as they are caught wildly speeding, flipping over while doing donuts, crashing into other vehicles, and hitting objects like walls and houses. 

Some of the crashes have led to the death of other drivers, pedestrians, and the drivers of the stolen vehicles. 

Joy riding is already pretty dangerous and illegal. But now kids are taking things to the next level by using stolen Kia models to crash into storefronts on purpose. 

Kids slam through glass windows and doors to jump out and steal from the stores before abandoning the Kia models. 

A gun shop was hit in Canal Fulton, Ohio. Kids stole tons of weapons and jumped into another getaway car. 

Another group of kids recently crashed into a Tobacco shop in Everett, Washington to steal various products. Also, kids just targeted a Marijuana shop in Everett two days ago. 

It’s unclear if the sash and grabs are related. But the kids use a stolen Kia model to get into the shops and don’t worry about damaging the vehicle, because they have a second vehicle to drive off in. 

Are Kia and Hyundai trying to stop thefts? 

The Kia and Hyundai models that are easy to steal are lower-end models like the Kia Soul, Sportage, and Hyundai Santa Fe that were manufactured between 2015 and 2020 without engine immobilizers. 

Engine immobilizers prevent the vehicle from starting with the use of the incorrect key or key fob. So without them, thieves can start the engine with a makeshift key by jamming it into the ignition cylinder

Hyundai has provided owners with an available security kit that includes a glass-break sensor that sounds an alarm and immobilizes the ignition when tripped. But it costs $170 and you’re responsible for the cost of installation. 

UPDATE 12/26/2023: Plus, Hyundai dealerships are providing free software updates to all customers. It takes 30 minutes to install and prevents the type of thefts made popular by social media trends. Hyundai has performed millions of updates with no record of software failure or malfunctions.

Kia and Hyundai have both provided local police stations and vehicle owners with steering wheel locks to deter theft. But you might want to consider purchasing a kill switch or brake-pedal lock as well. 

In 2022, standard engine immobilizers became standard across the entire Kia and Hyundai lineup. So, that’s good for newer vehicles. 

But the older vehicles are still being taken at alarming rates, leading to injuries, deaths, and larger crimes.