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story.lead_photo.caption FILE- This combination of file photos shows the logo of Kia Motors during an unveiling ceremony on Dec. 13, 2017, in Seoul, South Korea, top, and Hyundai logo on the side of a showroom on April 15, 2018, in the south Denver suburb of Littleton, Colo., bottom. Hyundai and Kia are recalling more than a half million vehicles in the U.S. because of new problems that can lead to engine fires. Documents posted Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019, by the government show the Korean automakers are adding three recalls after reports of fires across the country. (AP Photo, File)

DETROIT (AP) — Hyundai and Kia have added more than a half-million vehicles to 3-year string of U.S. recalls for engine failures and fires.

Three recalls released Thursday by the government add new problems and vehicles to the Korean automakers' list of safety woes, which have brought hundreds of complaints about fires from across the nation.

The companies have now recalled nearly 2.4 million vehicles for fire and engine failure problems since September 2015, and they are under investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for potentially being slow to fix faulty vehicles.

In addition, the companies are doing a "product improvement campaign" covering another 3.7 million vehicles to install software that will alert drivers of possible engine failures and send the cars into a reduced-speed "limp" mode if problems are detected.

The largest of three recalls posted on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website Thursday covers nearly 379,000 Kia Soul small SUVs from 2012-16 with 1.6-liter engines. Documents show high exhaust gas temperatures can damage the catalytic converters, which control pollution. That can cause abnormal combustion and damage pistons and connecting rods. A failed connecting rod can pierce the engine block and cause oil leaks that can cause fires.

In addition, Hyundai and Kia are recalling 152,000 Tuscon SUVs from 2011-13 and Sportage SUVs from 2011-12 to fix an engine oil pan leak that also can cause fires.

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