• UPDATE : 2020.06.06 15:20 토
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Hyundai, Kia become Gamechangers taking back Korean market
Lure consumers with customized options…Increase in sales of K7, Sonata model
승인 | 이동은 기자 | deun_lee@naver.com
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 승인 2019-09-10 16:48:11
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[Mediapen=Kim Sang-jun] Korean market was once thought to be ‘heaven’ for foreign automakers and their market share skyrocketed to 16.7% in 2018. 

Now, Hyundai and Kia Motors are becoming game changers taking back customers.

According to Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association(KAIDA), a total of 146,889 imported vehicles were registered from January to August this year, down 18.3 percent from a year-ago period. The sharp decrease was mainly driven by the delay of certifications for new cars, boycott of Japanese cars and the Dieselgate scandal.

▲ Honda Accord Hybrid/Source=Honda Korea

However, some view the improved quality of domestic cars as one of the main reasons for the plunging market share of foreign cars. Sales of recently launched domestic cars including Kia’s K7 and Hyundai’s Sonata are rising steeply as they lure consumers with low price and favourable options.

▲ Kia K7 Premier/Source=Kia Motors

Kia Motors sold 6,961 units of K7 in the domestic market last month, showing 110.6% increase from the same month a year ago. Meanwhile, Hyundai Sonata ranked first in sales last month by selling 8,393 units. Both cars offer many convenience options and cutting-edge technology compared to imported models with similar prices.

The key to success was customizing vehicles for domestic consumers. For example, they are rolling out cars equipped with air-purifying function as fine dust became a national problem. Hyundai and Kia are also topping ADAS(Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) technology into most of their models including entry-price cars. This is one of their key competitiveness as ADAS is hard to find in imported cars. Foreign automakers usually leave out ADAS in their models to keep the price low and consumers don’t ask for ADAS to get the cars sooner.

▲ Hyundai Sonata/Source=Hyundai Motors

“The recent decline of imported car’s market share is partly due to the improvement of domestic cars and the customization of Hyundai and Kia for Korean consumers”, said an official from the automobile industry. He added “Customers are highly satisfied with Hyundai and Kia as they provide convenient technology such as ADAS”.

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