Kia builds its Optima sedan and Sorento crossover at the Georgia facility, and it also provides its corporate cousin Hyundai with Santa Fe crossovers. The plant operates three full shifts and has an annual production capacity of over 300,000 vehicles.
The fire broke out at a factory owned by Daehan Solution on Saturday, according to a local TV report, which described the damage as "major," including a partially collapsed roof. Nobody was injured in the blaze, which is suspected to have started when a hot piece of metal was not allowed to cool before being discarded.
While a Kia spokesman told Reuters that the interruption would have a limited impact on sales, due to the plant's inventory, Hyundai officials can't be happy about the down time. Hyundai sales have been capacity constrained for months, as the company's rapid growth in recent years has led to speculation that it will soon be expanding its manufacturing operations in the U.S.