Kia joins Tesla with cars on infested ship denied entry into Australia - SUV VEHICLE

Kia joins Tesla with cars on infested ship denied entry into Australia

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It has now been revealed 1000 Kia vehicles were parked alongside Tesla electric cars on a ship sent back to China and South Korea after stink bugs were identified on board.

Tesla electric cars were joined by a batch of about 1000 Kia cars on a ship denied entry into Australia – and sent back to ports in China and South Korea – after stink bugs were found on board.

Drive reported last week the vessel – the Glovis Caravel, understood to have a capacity of about 6500 vehicles – contained a shipment of Tesla Model Y electric SUVs destined for Australian customers.

Now it has been revealed a number of new Kia vehicles were also on board – and are already en route back to South Korea after leaving Australian waters in recent weeks, and stopping in Shanghai.

A spokesperson for Kia Australia told Drive: “Around 1000 vehicles are impacted and the Kia dealer network has been notified. Kia Australia is working with all relevant parties to have the situation resolved as soon as possible.

“The vessel has been sent offshore to undertake the required treatment and it is anticipated this cargo will return to Australia during February.”

The “treatment” refers to the fumigation and cleaning of the ship to eliminate yellow spotted stink bugs – as well as other live insects – which pose a biosecurity threat to native Australian agriculture and wildlife.

A spokesperson for South Korean car maker Hyundai – a sibling to Kia – told Drive it does not have any vehicles aboard the infested ship, nor its luxury-car division Genesis.

Drive has contacted independent South Korean car maker SsangYong to determine if any of its vehicles were loaded onto the Glovis Caravel while it was anchored in South Korea.

Ship tracking websites show the Glovis Caravel is currently en route from Shanghai to the South Korean port of Pyeongtaek, after stopping in the Chinese city.

Social-media reports claim the cargo ship was initially allowed entry into Australia – where a select number of Tesla vehicles were unloaded, checked for pests before being sent to showrooms and delivered to customers – before the biohazard was detected.

A message sent by Tesla Australia to Model Y buyers – who posted it to social media – stated: “We are actively investigating all available options to get your [vehicle] to you as soon as possible.”

“This may include reassigning your order to a vehicle from the next batch of production. Further details will be provided in the next coming week.”

A spokesperson for the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry previously told Drive it “has been working with a vehicle carrier to manage biosecurity risks posed by live insects detected on the vessel and its cargo.

“There were multiple detections including Yellow Spotted Stink Bug, which poses a significant threat to Australia’s plant health and environment because of the damage it can do to agriculture crops, fruit and ornamental trees.”

It is not the first time the Glovis Caravel has been turned away due to a biohazard risk.

According to previous overseas reports, in 2018 the car carrier ship was refused entry into New Zealand in 2018 after authorities identified close to 600 stink bugs – 12 of them alive – on board after transporting vehicles from Japan.

A previous delivery of 10,000 Hyundai and Kia vehicles was delayed in 2020 due to a stink bug infestation, as previously reported by Drive.

The post Kia joins Tesla with cars on infested ship denied entry into Australia appeared first on Drive.

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