Kia and Hyundai have paid a heavy price for touting inaccurate fuel economy figures on more than 1.2 million vehicles. The South Korean Automakers paid $100 million in penalties to the EPA for violating the Clean Air Act.
The government agency that the vehicles sold created 5.2 million tons of greenhouse gases that were not accounted for because of the inaccurate figures.
In some cases, the fuel economy ratings were off by up to 6mpg.
In addition to the cash penalty, the automakers forfeit carbon credits amounting to around $200 million associated with the unaccounted emissions.
Using the case to send a strong message to other automakers that it will not tolerate skewed numbers, the EPA has required that Hyundai develop an independent certification group to verify the fuel economy for its vehicles. Formalizing this group will reportedly cost the automaker an additional $50 million.
On top of the fines and other actions from the United States government, the automakers also face lawsuits from angry vehicle owners.
With the added costs of settling these lawsuits, Hyundai and Kia could end up paying upwards of $745 million for the slip-up.