- 112,830 Kia vehicles sold globally in December, a 2.2% gain year-on-year
- Sales in North America, Europe, China, general markets and Korea post 2007 year-on-year sales growth of 5.1%, 4.3%, -11.8%, 15.2% and 0.6%, respectively
- C-segment Cerato is Kia top seller overseas for second consecutive year
- 8.2% growth in passenger sales overseas thanks to success of cee'd in Europe, which ranks in Kia's top five sellers in 2007
(SEOUL) January 16, 2007 -- Kia Motors Corporation announced today that cumulatively its global sales (export retail sales, domestic sales and sales from overseas plants) of passenger cars, recreation vehicles (RVs) and light trucks in 2007 recorded 1,269,164, representing a 3.5% year-on-year increase.
By region, Kia's North America market posted a year-on-year sales increase of 5.1% in 2007 with 340,293 units sold, while the Europe market posted a 4.3% increase with 343,090 units sold. Elsewhere, sales of Kia vehicles in China, general markets and Korea in 2007 were 114,601 (11.8% year-on-year decrease), 198,850 (15.2% year-on-year increase) and 272,330 (0.6% year-on-year increase) units, respectively.
In December, Kia's global sales increased by 2.2% year-on-year, totaling 112,830 units. General markets and Europe returned significant year-on-year increases, selling 19,244 (31.4% year-on-year increase) and 30,047 (22.7% year-on-year increase) units, respectively. North America, China, and Korea also sold 25,946 (17.3% year-on-year decrease), 12,586 (4.7 year-on-year increase) and 25,007 (10.2% year-on-year decrease) Kia vehicles in December.
In 2007, Kia's best-selling model in overseas markets, for the second consecutive year, is the C-segment Cerato (known as 'Spectra' in some markets) with 186,561 units sold, followed by the Sportage compact SUV (130,733 units), the B-segment Rio (119,993 units), and A-segment Picanto (119,799 units). The C-segment cee'd and the Sorento mid-size SUV battled out for fifth spot selling 89,510 and 89,471 units, respectively.
The cee'd, Kia's first car designed and built by and for Europeans, had a remarkable first full twelve months in Europe and was the most decorated Korean car in European automotive history winning eight national 'Car of the Year'-style awards, receiving numerous other magazine awards and ranking first in more than 30 comparison road tests. It also helped boost the number of Kia passenger cars sold overseas. 2007 saw 596,412 passenger cars sold, an increase of 8.2% on 2006 figures. With Kia's reduced emphasis on commercial vehicles, RVs returned a steady growth of 2.3% with 367,020 units sold. Factoring out commercial vehicles sales, Kia sales increased by 5.9% overseas.
Hyoung-Keun Lee, Senior Executive Vice President and COO of Kia Motors Corporation, said, "Following a relatively sluggish first half, 2007 resulted in a solid performance for Kia. It has been a tough auto retail environment and, in North America, for example, with what has been predicted as the worst industry sales for a decade, Kia returned consistent and solid sales growth.
"Most of Kia's sales fluctuations between 2006 and this year can be explained by the usual consumer patterns surrounding the phasing out of models and introduction of new ones. However, a big Kia differentiator in 2007 was the ever-growing success of the cee'd in Europe, sales of which, as expected, came into strong effect by mid-year."
Kia Motors Corporation (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 eight countries produce more than 1.3 million vehicles a year that are sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering 165 countries. Kia today has over 33,000 employees and annual revenues of almost $19 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 -- as well as a EUROTOP partner of UEFA. Kia Motors Corporation's brand slogan -- "The Power to Surprise" -- represents the company's global commitment to surpassing customer expectations through continuous automotive innovation.