- Construction of €1 billion production plant in Slovakia reaches completion
- New cars scheduled to roll off the assembly lines by late 2006
- Trial production scheduled to begin this month
(SEOUL) May 8, 2006 -- Kia Motors Corporation (KMC) today announced that construction of its state-of-the art €1 billion manufacturing facility in Zilina, Slovakia has been completed and that initial production trials at the plant will begin later this month.
The plant, which is Kia’s first manufacturing facility in Europe, is scheduled to go into mass production by the end of this year. The company has finalized the installation of the production lines and equipment, with a view to testing and synchronizing the various technologies during the trial phase.
Mr. In-Kyu Bae, President and CEO, Kia Motors Slovakia (KMS), said, “We have built the plant based on the key foundations of quality, flexibility and productivity. With the advent of this plant, we are now in a position to deliver high quality cars to the European market and achieve the highest satisfaction for our customers.”
“To ensure stable product quality, we have introduced the most modern, advanced production systems that are available. With our well trained employees, we are ready to establish an extremely competitive production operation in Slovakia,” said Mr. Bae.
A new C-segment model (codenamed ‘ED’) will be produced at the Zilina plant and will be the first of Kia’s models to be produced in Europe specifically in line with the requirements of European customers.
Kia has already hired over 1,200 employees. Recruitment for the first shift of staff finished last month and the hiring of employees for the second shift has already begun. By 2009, KMS will employ up to 3,000 workers and the plant will run a three shift operation.
The employment at the plant forms just part of the 10,000 jobs that are being created either directly or indirectly in the region, as more than ten parts and components manufacturers will build their own plants in Slovakia to supply the demands of the Kia facility.
The ultimate capacity of the plant will be 300,000 units annually. Output will be divided between C-Segment cars and small SUVs. Kia will be the only global automotive manufacturer to manufacture engines in Slovakia, producing gasoline and diesel engines.
The development of the new facility, together with its new headquarters and design center in Frankfurt, Germany, confirms Kia’s commitment to Europe and its determination to become an elite global automaker.
Kia Motors Corporation (www.kiamotors.com or www.kia.com) -- one of the fastest growing automakers 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 12 manufacturing and assembly operations in 7 countries produce more than 1.1 million vehicles a year that are sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering 160 countries. Kia today has over 32,500 employees and annual revenues of almost $16 billion. It is the major sponsor of the Australian Tennis Open and an official worldwide sponsor of the Davis Cup. From 2007 to 2014, Kia will be an official automotive partner of FIFA -- the governing body of the FIFA World 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.