- 224% growth in exports to Western Europe in first two months of 2005
- Overseas sales post 32% growth in February led by Sportage compact SUV
(SEOUL) March 3, 2005 -- Kia Motors Corporation today announced that its exports of passenger cars and light trucks in February recorded 53,700 units. More exports during this period could have been achieved if it were not for the stopped production during the lunar New Year holidays as well as manufacturing line facility renovation for the recently unveiled all-new 4- and 5-door Rio and Carnival (Sedona) MPV.
Nevertheless, for the first two months of the year, cumulative exports reached 136,034 units for a 46.9% increase over the same period of last year. Compared to the first two months of 2004, exports to the key market of Western Europe have grown from 14,842 units to 48,130 units for a 224% increase. The Asia & Pacific and Central & South America regions also experienced a surge in exports so far this year, posting growth rates of 85% and 81%, respectively.
Much of this continued strong performance for Kia Motors can also be attributed to worldwide exports of the new Sportage now getting into full swing, with shipments of the highly anticipated compact SUV reaching 14,056 units for the first two months of 2005. The leading export models for this period were the Sorento SUV (21,828 units shipped), A-segment Picanto (19,464 units), B-segment Rio (18,569 units) and C-segment Cerato (Spectra) with 18,480 units shipped.
Meanwhile, overseas sales of Kia vehicles in February 2005 reached 56,730 units -- a 32% increase over the previous year. February sales in North America, Europe and the general market all posted positive gains of 11.1%, 70.2% and 25.8%, respectively.
"Despite a challenging outlook for the global automotive industry in 2005, Kia Motors continues to make steady headway in increasing its market share in every region of the world," said Mr. Yong-Hwan Kim, Senior Executive Vice President and COO of Kia Motors.
“So far this year, we have held the world premiere of the all-new successors to two of our volume leading models -- the Carnival (Sedona) MPV and the B-segment 4- and 5-door Rio. With these popular models expected to hit showrooms this summer, and with the introduction of an all-new D-segment sedan later this year, our improved line-up in 2005 is sure to provide momentum for continued growth well into the future.” he added.
Editor’s note: export data does not include KD (knock down) exports, which are assembled at overseas plants.
Kia Motors Corporation (www.kiamotors.com) -- the fastest growing automaker in the world -- was founded in 1944 and is Korea’s oldest manufacturer of motor vehicles. As part of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, Kia aims to become one of the world’s premier automotive brands. Kia’s 16 manufacturing and assembly operations in 13 countries produce more than 1.1 million vehicles a year that are sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering 190 countries. Kia today has 30,000 employees and annual revenues of $14 billion. It is the major sponsor of the Australian Tennis Open and an official worldwide sponsor of the Davis Cup. Kia Motors Corporation’s brand slogan -- “The Power to Surprise” -- represents the company’s global commitment to surpassing customer expectations through continuous automotive innovation.