Hyundai owners were able to get free anti-theft software updates

Mar 16, 2024, 8:58 AM | Updated: Mar 18, 2024, 11:36 am

Photo: The company logo shines off the hood of a 2021 K5 sedan on display in the Kia exhibit at the...

The company logo shines off the hood of a 2021 K5 sedan on display in the Kia exhibit at the Denver auto show. (File photo: David Zalubowski, AP)

(File photo: David Zalubowski, AP)

Last weekend, a free software upgrade for Hyundai owners took place at four locations throughout Western Washington.

According to the website, these clinics throughout the state were “intended to complement Hyundai’s nationwide network of dealerships and drive further installations of Hyundai’s free anti-theft software upgrade for customers who continue to be affected by the thefts.”

Two took place in Tacoma, one at Robert Larson Hyundai on S. Tacoma Way and the other at the Tacoma Dome. The other events occurred at Factoria Mall in Bellevue and at Doug’s Hyundai on State Route 99 (SR 99) in Edmonds.

“In the Puget Sound region, we’ve been experiencing a spike in thefts of Kia and Hyundai vehicles,” Bellevue Police Department spokesperson Seth Tyler said. “Specifically, this is related to the Kia boy trend that was popularized online. So in Bellevue alone, we’ve seen almost a 50% increase in vehicle thefts in the last year.”

He told us the BPD is committed to reducing the number of thefts.

“We are fortunate to partner with Hyundai Motor Company,” Tyler added.

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Hyundai owners were able to choose their location and receive a free software upgrade that will make their car harder to steal.

“They (Hyundai owners) may also be eligible for an ignition upgrade that will make the ignition harder to break into,” Tyler said. “And they can also get a free steering wheel lock courtesy of Hyundai.”

Event opportunity to bypass wait for dealership

The reason for the event is that owners of Hyundai are experiencing a three to four-month wait at dealerships to get the security update done.

“So this is an opportunity to bypass that line,” he said.

There’s no appointment necessary, and the work should only take about 30 minutes.

What about Kia owners?

“So if you drive any other make or vehicle, we are still offering the steering wheel locks,” Tyler said, “You can stop by any of our substations, no questions asked. We’ll give you one. So if you have another make of vehicle and you want to protect yourself, that is a way to do that.”

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He said the prevention crime group will also be on hand.

“They’ll be assisting with those steering wheel lock giveaways. So the weather should be fantastic. It should be a great event,” he said.

More information on the events

Tacoma Dome: East D St. between Tacoma Dome and Lemay America’s Car Museum
8 a.m.- 5 p.m. on Friday, March 15; 8 a.m.-6 p.m. on Saturday, March 16; 8 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sunday, March 17

Factoria Mall: 4055 Factoria Blvd. SE, Bellevue
8 a.m.- 6 p.m. on Friday; 8 a.m.-6 p.m. on Saturday; 8 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sunday

Doug’s Hyundai: 22130 SR 99, Edmonds
9 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday

Robert Larson Hyundai: 7601 S. Tacoma Way, Tacoma
8 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday

The website states the software upgrade should take fewer than 30 minutes.

Editors’ note: This item originally was published on Thursday, March 14. It has been updated and republished multiple times since then.

Contributing: Steve Coogan, MyNorthwest

You can read more of Micki Gamez’s stories here. Follow Micki on X, formerly known as Twitter, or email her here. 

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Hyundai owners were able to get free anti-theft software updates