Hyundai, Kia, Automotive trends, Auto industry trends, Automotive market research, Automotive market analysis, auto industry news

Hyunda & KIA are affiliated Korean OEMs selling cars and light commercial vehicles under the Hyundai, KIA and Genesis brands. This page contains research on Hyundai & KIA's activities and strategy.

Automotive trends, Auto industry trends, Automotive market research, Automotive market analysis, auto industry news

2018

August

  • Made a strategic investment in Revv, an Indian car sharing firm. (Hyundai)
  • Unions will hold partial strikes of between 4 - 6 hours per day at Kia’s South Korean plants after failing to reach agreement on wage rises. (Korea JoongAng)
  • KIA unveiled a new technology, dubbed separated sound zone, which the company says can create individual sound zones within a vehicle through localised noise cancellation. (KIA)
  • Stopping production of diesel engines for Sonata, Grandeur, i30 and Maxcruz, citing low sales mixes. (Yonhap)

July                

  • Launched a digital showroom on Amazon that will let buyers browse Hyundai products and then directs them to a dealer for a final purchase. (Hyundai)
  • Reached a wage agreement with South Korean unions. (Reuters)
  • Will develop a standalone halo model for the N sports sub-brand, but hasn’t yet finalised the design. (Auto Express)
  • Hyundai’s CRADLE fund announced an investment in solid state battery developer Ionic Materials. The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance is already an investor. (Hyundai)
  • Hyundai and Baidu signed a far-reaching agreement on connectivity and voice recognition, similar to the one Baidu agreed with Ford. (Hyundai)
  • Invested in Autotalks, a creator of chips that facilitate communication between cars and the internet of things. The two companies also agreed a strategic collaboration. (Hyundai)
  • South Korean unions voted to strike in a disagreement over the annual wage increase. (Reuters)

Q2 2018 Financial Results

  • Hyundai sold 1,194,217 cars in Q2 2018, an increase of 10.8% on a year earlier. (Hyundai)
  • KIA sold 739,866 vehicles in Q2 2018, an increase of 8.2% on a year-over-year basis. (KIA)

June

  • Rumours resurfaced (and were refuted) that Hyundai was interested in acquiring FCA re-surfaced. Supposedly, Hyundai executives have decided to buy FCA and are simply waiting for a drop in the share price. (CNET)
  • Partnering with Finnish group Wärtsilä on stationary storage that utilises used electric car batteries. (Wärtsilä)
  • Launched an all-inclusive payment option in the US called Hyundai PLUS. (Hyundai)
  • Hyundai and Audi will jointly develop fuel cell technologies. Affiliates such as KIA and VW will have access to any benefits from the agreement. Hyundai implied that they had superior experience and technology to Audi, but that the potential business for Hyundai Mobis was a major factor in the partnership. (Hyundai)
  • South Korean unions threatened to take legal action to prevent Hyundai creating a lower cost manufacturing JV with a regional government because they believe the company has sufficient capacity in its unionised plants. (Yonhap)
  • Granting more autonomy to its regional offices to enable faster decision making. A recruitment drive is on for staff in finance, planning, product development and sales. (Yonhap)
  • Sojitz, Hyundai’s local partner in Pakistan, said its factory would be completed in December 2019 and the brand was aiming for a market share of 6% by 2024. (Sojitz)
  • KIA is recalling around 500,000 vehicles in the US to fix problems with airbag deployment. (Detroit News)

May

  • Considering creating a joint venture with one of South Korea’s municipal governments to make Hyundai models under contract and loosen demand on its own plants (and provide a hedge to labour disputes). (Yonhap)
  • Launching a Hyundai in-car payment facility with assistance from Xevo. (Hyundai)
  • Hyundai’s Cradle venture fund invested an undisclosed amount in radar start-up Metawave. The company claims that its “next generation” radar can see over 150 metres with high resolution. (Hyundai)
  • Reportedly having problems fulfilling orders for the Hyundai Ioniq in North America due to shortage of the outgoing battery pack. (Green Car Reports)

April

  • The South Korean Fair Trade Commission appeared to side with Hyundai in an ongoing battle with an activist shareholder over the motor group’s structure. (Bloomberg)
  • Elliott Management, an activist investor with a history of taking on Korean chaebols, announced that it had built stakes in Hyundai, Kia and an affiliate, raising speculation about their motives. (Yonhap)

Q1 2018 Financial Results

  • Hyundai and KIA both reported financial results for Q1 2018. Hyundai saw revenue and profit drop, by (4)% and (45)% respectively. (Hyundai) KIA fared a bit better, revenue was down (2.2)% and operating profit dropped (20)%. (KIA). Taking both affiliates together, revenue was 35 tillion KRW ($32.7 billion) and operating profit was 987 billion KRW (about $920 million).

March

  • South Korean union officials complained that the updated US-South Korea free trade is “humiliating” and made local production of a planned Hyundai pick-up unlikely -- probably music to the ears of US negotiators. (Reuters)
  • Will simplify its governance structure by spinning off the core module business of supplier Hyundai Mobis and merge it with logistics firm Hyundai Glovis. (Yonhap)
  • The head of Hyundai’s South Korean union expressed concern over the effect of electric cars on factory jobs, saying “electric cars are disasters. They are evil.”. (Economic Times of India)
  • US regulators are reviewing Hyundai and Kia vehicles for a potential safety risk where airbags might fail to deploy in the event of a head-on collision to see if there is a systemic problem with the design. (Reuters)
  • Reportedly asked South Korean unions to cooperate in reducing worker benefits; the request was rebuffed. (Yonhap)
  • Unveiled the Kona BEV, a small SUV. The car has a 64 kWh battery offering 470 km of range, a smaller 39.4 kWh is also available. (Hyundai)

February

  • Hyundai’s head of autonomous vehicles said that sales will be driven by ride sharing fleets rather than individual customers. (Bloomberg)
  • Long-rumoured talks for Hyundai to join BMW’s self-driving alliance are reportedly in the final stages. Memo: Hyundai recently announced a collaboration with Aurora on driverless cars. (Handelsblatt)
  • Announced a goal of 10,000 hydrogen filled vehicles sold by 2022. (Yonhap)
  • Kia says that it will stop selling Diesel variants of Rio and Venga in the UK because of falling volumes. (Autocar)

January

  • The South Korean government announced that the Hyundai Group (including Hyundai and Kia) would invest $21.6 billion in new technologies and create 45,000 jobs. Hyundai confirmed it had helped draft the press release but declined to offer independent confirmation of the impacts. (ET News)
  • Hyundai invested in Grab; the two companies will partner on electric ride-hailing fleets. (Hyundai)
  • Kia will launch the WiBLE car sharing service in Europe during 2018. (Kia)
  • Following the announcement that Hyundai and Kia collectively would launch 38 “green cars” by 2025 covering hybrids, BEVs and fuel cells, Kia said it was planning 16 electrified vehicles -- 10 x hybrid/FHEV; 5 x BEV and 1 Fuel cell -- leaving 22 for Hyundai. (Kia)
  • Announced a partnership with start-up Aurora -- founded by the former head of Google’s program -- to develop a level 4 capable car by 2021 (Hyundai’s earlier target was “possibly” 2022). (Hyundai)
  • Will show a pair of concept cars at CES; an all-electric model for KIA and a connected fuel cell vehicle for Hyundai.

2017

2017 Full Year Earnings

  • Hyundai reported financial results for fourth quarter and full year 2017. Global wholesales of 4.507 million units were down (6.4)% versus 2016 -- more than explained by China. Revenue of 96.4 trillion KRW was up 2.9% and operating income of 4.575 trillion KRW was down (11.9)%. (Hyundai)
  • Kia reported financial results for fourth quarter and full year 2017. Global wholesales of 2.708 million units were down (10.3)% versus 2016 -- almost entirely in China. Revenue of 53.5 trillion KRW was up 1.6% and but operating profit of 662 billion KRW was down (73.1)%. (Kia)
  • Hyundai reported total 2017 sales of 4,504,825 units, a decline of (6.5)% versus 2016. Kia sold 2,746,188 units, a decrease of (7.8)% versus 2016 (Hyundai)

December

  • Union leaders in South Korea pencilled in strike action beginning on January 2nd after talks on a new labour agreement failed to reach an agreement by the end of 2017. An earlier tentative agreement was rejected by workers in a ballot. (Wards)
  • Executives said that all Hyundai and Kia vehicles launched after 2019 will be connected cars and all vehicles built after 2025 will be connected. (ET News)
  • Believes that battery prices will stop falling by 2020 because rising raw material prices will cancel out the benefits of design improvements and manufacturing scale. (Green Car Reports)
  • Hyundai said that it still sees fuel cell vehicles as “the ultimate direction” but that it will do more to work on battery electric vehicles. (Bloomberg)
  • Recalling about 520,000 Hyundai and Kia cars to fix problems with brake lights. (Detroit News)
  • Will release a safe-stopping mode in 2021 that acts if it detects that the driver is no longer capable. (ET News)
  • Suffered continued strikes in South Korean as management rejected union demands for higher pay. Five plants have been affected, with over 43,000 vehicles lost. (Yonhap)

November

  • Suffered labour disruption in South Korea as unions told employees not to support the launch of Kona SUV production due to wider disputes over pay, working conditions and outsourcing. (Reuters)
  • Teaming up with Smartcar to enable new services in connected vehicles. Amongst other things, 3rd party service operators will be able to locate and access the vehicle (with the owner’s permission). It will also be possible to use the vehicle in peer-to-peer carsharing. (Hyundai)
  • In talks with FCA on component sharing with transmissions and fuel cells as areas of particular focus. (Economic Times of India)

October

  • Beijing-Hyundai (the company’s Chinese JV) said it had created a strategy called “localization 2.0” to help its products be seen as more Chinese and offset some of the negative sentiment it has received over US military sites in South Korea. (ET News)
  • Launched an all-electric car sharing scheme with 100 vehicles in Amsterdam. Rental costs €12 per hour. (Auto Rental International)
  • Said that the Hyundai Verna’s launch in India was going very well with 15,000 orders in the first 40 days of the product being on sale. (Times of India)

Q3 2017 Earnings

  • Hyundai reported Q3 financial results. Revenues of 71.9 trillion KRW were up 4.0% on a year-over-year basis. Operating income of 3.8 trillion KRW was down (8.9)% YoY, primarily due to recall costs and higher incentive spending. (Hyundai)
  • Kia reported Q3 financial results. Revenues of 40.5 trillion KRW were up 1.8% on a year-over-year basis. Operating income of 360 billion KRW was down (81.4)% YoY. (Kia)
  • Reported Q3 2017 sales of 1,763,276 units for Hyundai and Kia, a drop of (0.4)% on a year over year basis. Whilst domestic sales increased 22%, they could not offset weakenss in other markets (particularly China). (Hyundai) (Kia)

September

  • Believes that 1 in 10 cars sold in Europe by 2020 -- about two million vehicles -- will be a B-SUV. (Faconauto)
  • Saw rumours in the South Korean press that it was interested in a takeover of FCA. (Detroit Bureau)
  • Kia’s Russia chief says that against the company’s initiation expectation of 5%-7% growth this year, they now believe that the Russia market will grow by up to 12%. (Reuters)
  • Labour negotiations in South Korea are reportedly not going well (again), leading to speculation of strikes around the end of the year affecting Hyundai/Kia. Workers are asking for pay rises and a substantial bonus. (Wards Auto)

August

  • Lost a legal case with South Korean trade unions that means overtime pay in future will be higher. (Reuters)
  • Suffered production disruption in China due to a payment dispute with a fuel tank supplier. (Bloomberg)
  • Hyundai executives said that the company had approved development of a pick-up truck for launch in the USA in 2020. A small SUV named the Kona should debut this year. (Reuters)
  • Said that it had accelerated its plan for rollout of all-electric and fuel cell vehicles. Hyundai and Kia will launch 31 “eco-friendly” vehicles by 2020 (eco-friendly in Hyundai-Kia’s nomenclature includes PHEVs, BEVs and fuel cell vehicles) including 8 BEVs and 2 FCEVs. Specific highlights include: a BEV version of its Kona compact SUV with 390km range in 2018, a BEV Genesis luxury saloon in 2021 and a BEV with a 500km range after 2021. (Hyundai)
  • Media updates on Hyundai’s project to showcase self-driving vehicles at the 2018 Winter Olympics said that high definition maps, accurate to 10cm, were at the centre of the company’s autonomous strategy -- especially due to the snow expected at the Winter Olympics site. (ET News)

July

  • Hyundai reported July sales of 333,180 units, down (1.8)% on a year-over-year basis and down (7.4)% YTD. (Hyundai)
  • Kia reported July sales of 216,118 vehicles, down (5.6)% on a year-over-year basis and down (8.9)% YTD. (Kia)
  • A senior Hyundai executive said that the company believes the viability of solid state batteries as a power source for EVs will be proven in the 2020 to 2025 timeframe and that if the technology succeeds, EV market share could be 90% by 2025. (Inside EVs)
  • Said that it will bring forward its timeline for a Level 2 self-driving system. The HDA2 (highway driving assist) feature had been targeted for roll-out between 2019 and 2022 but will now begin to appear in 2018. Hyundai suggested that this feature set provided a pathway to fully autonomous vehicles by 2022. (More…)
  • Reportedly in the final stages of design for an 8 speed dual clutch transmission to be used in passenger cars from 2018 onwards. (More…)
  • Hyundai workers in South Korea have voted to go on strike, demanding a 7.13% pay rise. (More…)

Q2 2017 Earnings

  • Hyundai Motor reported financial results for Q2 2017. Operating profit of 1.34 trillion won was up 7.5% on a year-over-year basis whilst revenues were up 4%. Net profit of 913 billion won was down 35% YoY. Hyundai attributed much of the profit drop to lower sales in China and said it was delivering 6 electric vehicles by 2020 to regain momentum in the market. (Hyundai)
  • Hyundai reported June sales results. 376,109 units were sold, a (15.5)% reduction on a year-over-year basis. The main cause of the reduction was weaker South Korea and Chinese sales. (More…)
  • Kia reported June sales results. 232,370 vehicles were sold, representing a (13.3)% decline on a year-over-year basis. Kia primarily blamed declines in the South Korean market and losses in China (memo: both Hyundai and Kia had previously said tension over US missile interceptor sites in South Korea were harming Chinese sales). (More…)

June

  • The head of its Spanish market operations said that diesels will disappear in the B segment. (..)
  • Said that it had no plans to buy other car companies but does want to have more cooperation with technology companies. (..)

May

  • Was forced to deny rumours that it will introduce a holding company structure. (..)
  • Will be investigated by the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration over the way that it handled a recall for vehicles that were at risk of engine fires. (..)
  • Lost an appeal against a (March 2017) recall decision by the South Korean transport ministry. The companies will now have to recall around 240,000 between them. (..)
  • Hyundai subsidiary Hyundai Wia will end its turbocharger joint venture with IHI and will take over the partnership’s plant in Seosan, South Korea. (..)

April

  • Said that April sales in the USA were 1% up year-over-year (..)
  • Said at the Shanghai auto show that Kia will announce a plan for a factory in India “soon” (..)
  • The chairman of its Chinese joint venture said that the Hyundai brand in China is facing “severe market challenges” due to the “complicated political, economic and competitive market environment”. (..)
  • Announced recalls on 1.4 million US and South Korean Hyundai and Kia vehicles with 2.0 and 2.4 litre engines due to knocking (a noise that the engine makes when combustion is incorrect) and loss of power (Source)
  • Said that sales in China had been negatively impacted by political tension of anti-missile batteries that the USA was locating in South Korea (last week Hyundai-Kia announced a weeklong plant shutdown) (Source)

Q1 2017 Earnings

  • Reported Q1 2017 net profit of 1.33 trillion won, above analyst expectation but down year-over-year. (..)

March

  • Said it will unveil a FCV SUV next year with 800km range on a single tank
  • Will give workers at its Czech factory a 12% pay rise this year
  • Suspended production at its plant in Hebei province for a week. Hyundai said it was to check and modify production line technology, media speculated it was due to sales problems stemming from a deterioration in the Chinese-South Korean relationship as a result of the planned deployment in South Korea of a missile interceptor battery (THAAD) by the USA.