중앙데일리

Hyundai balance tips to overseas

Top carmaker sold more vehicles made at foreign plants for the first time in Q1

Apr 03,2010
Hyundai Motor Co. said yesterday that it sold more cars produced at its overseas factories than those made domestically in the first three months of this year, a first for the company and a sign of its widening global reach.

Between January and March, the automobiles produced and sold abroad by Hyundai totaled 442,803 units, which accounted for 52.7 percent of its total production and sales of 840,258 units. Hyundai manufactured 397,455 vehicles in Korea in the first quarter, distributing 168,300 domestically and 299,425 abroad.

Hyundai’s overseas output and sales were just 27.2 percent of the total in 2005, when its factory in Alabama in the United States began operating. The figure rose to 34.6 percent in 2007 and 39.9 percent in 2008.

Last year, Hyundai completed construction of its first European factory in the Czech Republic, which boosted overseas production and sales to 48.1 percent. Hyundai now has plants in the United States, China, India, Turkey, the Czech Republic and Russia.

“In the first quarter, auto output and sales soared 47 percent in China and 32 percent in India from a year ago, and this led to the increased sales of internationally produced vehicles,” said Lee Ki-hoon, a Hyundai spokesman.

This year, Hyundai is expected to produce 1.76 million vehicles overseas and 1.71 million cars domestically.

The news comes at a sensitive time as the unions of both Hyundai and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. are set to demand the automakers limit production at their plants abroad over fears of job losses at home.

Separately, Hyundai Motor America said Thursday its March and first quarter sales reached new highs because of the popularity of the new Sonata sedan and Tucson sport-utility vehicles. Hyundai’s American subsidiary said it sold 47,002 vehicles in March, up 15.4 percent from a year earlier, and its first quarter sales also hit an all-time high of 111,509 vehicles.

Hyundai said the Sonata has emerged as America’s third best-selling midsize sedan behind the Toyota Camry and the Honda Accord, and that it outsells the Nissan Altima, Ford Fusion and Chevy Malibu.

“On a year-over-year basis, Sonata sales were up 52.6 percent, the Tucson was up 129.1 percent, the Santa Fe was up 62.8 percent and the Genesis was up 31.9 percent, marking the ninth consecutive month of on-year sales gains for the Genesis,” Hyundai America said in a statement.

Hyundai plans to introduce three new models in the U.S. this year including its luxury sedan the Equus.


By Limb Jae-un [jbiz91@joongang.co.kr]


dictionary dictionary | 프린트 메일로보내기 내블로그에 저장