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Car defect cases double in three years

Sept. 25, 2022 - 15:22 By Hong Yoo
An electric vehicle charging zone inside a parking lot in Seoul (Yonhap)

Cases of reported car defects have more than doubled in three years, a lawmaker said Sunday.

A total of 18,452 car defect reports had been filed to the Transport Ministry’s vehicle recall center from 2019 to 2021, according to Korea Transportation Safety Authority data that Democratic Party lawmaker Min Hong-chul had obtained.

By year, 3,750 car defect cases were filed in 2019, 6,917 cases in 2020, and 7,785 cases in 2021, an increase by 2.1 times during the past three years.

Defects reported in hydrogen cars in 2021 surged the most -- 21.5 times -- from the number of cases reported in 2019.

EV defects followed next rising 9.4 times, and hybrid cars 2.9 times, while those in gasoline-powered cars increased 2.2 times and diesel cars 1.6 times.

Data showed that 103 cases among 445 EV defect reports filed in 2021 needed a more thorough investigation due to their peculiarity -- an increase from only two in the same category in 2019.

Among 193 hybrid car defects filed in 2021, there were 122 that warranted further investigation -- an increase from two such cases in 2019.

“Compared to three years ago, the number of car defects reported more than doubled, especially those of EVs and hybrids. It is necessary to protect consumers by strengthening the preemptive defect investigation into manufacturers, and to thoroughly manage car safety as it is directly related to public safety,” said Min.