Teens across the country are being challenged to steal Kia and Hyundai cars, take them on joy rides and post videos of it all on social media platforms.
One San Jose woman said her Hyundai was stolen Thursday and she believes this new challenge is to blame.
Her car was found Saturday, with no gas, trashed and just down the street from where she lives.
“Trash packs of garbage, half eaten food, other people’s stolen items like other people’s registration things like that and the ignition was completely trashed,” said Kayla Boardman of San Jose.
Autotrader explained to NBC Los Angeles that some of those cars don’t have the chip or immobilizer that helps engines recognize a key or a fob, so thieves are using tools like USB cords.
They recommend using steering wheel locks.
In a statement, Kia wrote, “All 2022 models and trims have an immobilizer applied either at the beginning of the model year or as a running change.”
As for Hyundai, they said “immobilizers became standard on all vehicles produced after Nov. 1 of 2021” and said they’ll be selling a security kit next month.