Hyundai Motor, Kia Motors flag modest sales growth in 2018
FILE PHOTO: Hyundai Motor's vehicles are displayed at a Hyundai Motorstudio in Goyang, South Korea May 29, 2017. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji
SEOUL: South Korea's Hyundai Motor and affiliate Kia Motors set a 2018 total sales target of 7.55 million vehicles, a likely modest improvement on the previous year.Analysts said sales growth was expected to be small, partly due to the firms' slow response to the booming SUV segment and weak demand in the United States and China.Analysts estimate the automakers sold about 7.3 million vehicles last year, missing their goal of 8.25 million and the lowest since 2012.The firms' sales in the world's largest auto market, China, tumbled amid a chill between Beijing and Seoul over South Korea's deployment of a U.S. anti-missile system. China and South Korea agreed in October to normalize exchanges and move past the dispute.Hyundai said in a regulatory filing it planned to sell 4.68 million vehicles at home and overseas, while Kia Motors targeted total sales of 2.88 million vehicles. They will announce 2017 sales numbers later on Tuesday.“Global auto demand growth is expected to stagnate this year, with demand seen shrinking in major markets like the United States, China and Europe," Yoon Yeo-chul, vice chairman of Hyundai Motor, said in New Year speech to employees.
(Reporting Hyunjoo Jin; Additional reporting by Joyce Lee; Editing by Paul Tait and Stephen Coates)
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