MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - Hyundai and Kia are partnering with law enforcement to host free anti-theft software upgrade events in the Twin Cities starting on Friday.
The events follow an uptick of car thefts largely targeting Kia and Hyundai vehicles for being easier to steal. Authorities previously said that some of the vehicles lack an electronic security device called an engine immobilizer, making it easier to start without a key.
The software upgrades aim at correcting the issue that leaves vehicles vulnerable to theft. Eligible Kia and Hyundai vehicles can get a free upgrade at these events. Officials say the entire process takes an estimated 30 minutes.
In Minneapolis, drivers can take their eligible Hyundai's to the old Kmart building parking lot located at 10 W Lake St. where technicians will be waiting onsite to provide safety upgrades to the vehicles.
The event runs from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 10, and Saturday, Nov. 11.
In St. Paul, Hyundai technicians will be available at the Allianz Arena shopping center parking lot located at 400 Snelling Ave. S. The event is happening on Sunday, Nov. 12, and Monday, Nov. 13, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Appointments are not necessary, but drivers should check if their vehicle is eligible for the upgrade. To see the full list of eligible vehicles, click here.
Kia is setting up a mobile service center at Canterbury Park in Shakopee. Officials say the event runs from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 11 through Sunday, Nov. 12.
A Kia spokesperson explained the software upgrade is designed to "restrict the operation of the vehicle’s ignition system" and make it more difficult for thieves to use methods seen on social media to steal the vehicle.
An appointment to get the software upgrade isn’t necessary, but drivers should check if their vehicle is eligible here.
A Kia spokesperson said over 800,000 vehicles in the U.S. have received the software upgrade.