Korean automakers Hyundai and Kia overstated the gas mileage on many of their vehicles and understated the amount of greenhouse gases they would emit, according to a settlement with the federal government announced Monday.
The Justice Department and the EPA said the companies will pay a $100 million civil fine, the largest in the history of the Clean Air Act. Justice and the EPA say the automakers sold nearly 1.2 million vehicles that will emit roughly 4.75 million metric tons more of greenhouses gases than the companies told the EPA they would release. The companies also will forfeit what are known as greenhouse gas emission credits that can be used to offset emissions from less fuel-efficient models. The government said Hyundai and Kia misled consumers on the actual gas mileage of many of their cars, overstating it by anywhere from one to six miles a gallon. Hyundai said it made honest mistakes in interpreting complex EPA mileage test requirements. Neither company admitted liability and both say they've complied with the law.
-- NBC's Pete Williams and The Associated Press