Hyundai to recall Sonatas in South Korea, U.S.

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The Hyundai Motor Company said on Wednesday that it would recall 46,000 new Sonata sedans in South Korea and 1,300 in the United States, becoming the latest global carmaker to issue recalls.

Hyundai found a fault in the front-door latches of the 2011 Sonata, the company said in a statement. It planned to notify the South Korean government and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the United States about the defect this week.

Hyundai said the recall, which will begin in March, was in response to a handful of customer complaints, but added there had been no reports of accidents or injuries connected to the flaw.

“Since the launch of the Sonata in Korea last September, Hyundai Motor has discovered a mechanical problem with its front-door latches, which, in very rare instances, will not close properly,” the company’s statement said.

The recall came as Hyundai, the world’s No. 4 carmaker together with its affiliate Kia Motors, has been widely expected to increase its market share this year, especially in the United States, partly because of troubles at Toyota, its Japanese rival. Hyundai trails Toyota, General Motors and Volkswagen in worldwide sales.

Last year, Hyundai was one of the only large automakers to expand sales in the United States, rising 8.3 percent, to 435,000 cars. Industrywide sales fell 21 percent in the United States.

Toyota has recalled more than eight million vehicles globally in recent months for problems including loose floor mats that can pin down the accelerator, sticky accelerator pedals and a braking system flaw on the Prius and other models.

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