A prolonged factory strike at Hyundai-Kia factories in South Korea could mean that US dealership inventory of certain vehicles, such as the South Korea-built Hyundai Accent and Kia Soul, could dry up in the coming months, depending on the length of the strike, reports Cars.com's blog, Kicking Tires. The two brands together rank sixth in US sales and fifth in global sales.
Automotive News reports Peter Schreyer has been appointed the first non-Korean president of Hyundai-Kia Motor Group. Schreyer is expected to retain his role as the chief designer for Kia, while also taking on new, high-level executive duties. He is now one of three presidents at the automaker.
Hyundai and Kia have experienced phenomenal growth over the past few years, even as the rest of the auto industry was embroiled in an ugly downturn. In fact, 2011 was a terrific year for the Korean automaker, as sales jumped by double digits globally.
Officially confirming what we've all but known for some time now, Kia announced this morning that its West Point, Georgia plant will add a second vehicle to its production line, the 2011 Hyundai Santa Fe. The move will also be paired with the addition of a second shift beginning October 1, although limited production of the Santa Fe is earmarked to ramp-up on September 27.
Earlier this week when Hyundai America product development VP John Krafcik revealed that the company would unveil a hybrid version of the Sonata at the LA Auto Show, some of the PR people in the room seemed to be caught by surprise. Now the Chairman of the Hyundai-Kia Auto group, Mong-Koo Chung has confirmed that and more. Over on the Kia Buzz blog, the chairman has affirmed production of a hybrid version of the Elantra in Korea in 2009 followed by a mid-size hybrid (namely the Sonata) in 2010.
We just talked about the fact that Kia and Hyundai were scaling back sales projections for 2006, now we are learning that production will be adjusted as well. After a series of high-level scandals and ensuing postponements, Kia Motors Corp. finally broke ground on its Georgia facility today. And at the company's official groundbreaking ceremony today, it announced some changes. Most important was the announcement about where the new vehicles produced at this plant will be headed.