This problem had already been the subject of a recall in 2018
A relay from the hybrid system could overheat and prevent the vehicle from moving
Due to its position, this relay could set fire to the rear seat cushion
Hyundai is recalling more than 10,000 units of the hybrid and plug-in hybrid Ioniq from the 2017 and 2018 model years in the United States due to a risk of fire.
This recall replaces a very similar one that was ordered back in 2018 since the automaker found out that the fix made at the time is not 100% effective. The company also claims that some of its dealers have botched the repair.
The cause of the recall can be traced back to the main relay of the Power Relay Assembly, located under the rear seat and over the hybrid system’s battery.
This relay apparently has insufficient connections, which increases its internal resistance and thus leads to a risk of overheating. If this occurs, the vehicle might become undrivable and a warning light could be displayed on the instrument panel.
More worryingly, the overheating relay could set fire to the rear seat cushion and then to the whole interior of the vehicle.
The first recall mandated an inspection of the relay by the dealer in order to assess its condition. If it was found to be undamaged, the original relay was left in place.
Since this recall was performed, Hyundai says it has received reports of four additional vehicles that caught fire, fortunately without injury.
Since these four vehicles had had their relay replaced, every vehicle that was part of the original recall will have to go back to a Hyundai dealer, not only those that kept their original part.
Owners will be notified by mail by the end of August in the US.
Update: Hyundai Canada informs us that this recall will not apply to Canadian vehicles, therefore only American Ioniq owners will receive a notification letter.