Kia saw sales increase 17.5% in August from a year earlier despite partial strikes at its factories in South Korea.

The Hyundai Motor group brand sold 224,247 vehicles in August, compared with 190,870 units in 2012. For the first eight months of the year, Kia said it sold 1.88m units, up 4.8% from a year ago.

The sales figure came as Kia's 30,000 unionised workers went on a partial strike today (Monday) to press their demands for a wage increase and other fringe benefits - their fourth walk-out since mid-August.

The union and management plan to resume negotiations tomorrow to try to work out differences over the union's demands, which include a special bonus amounting to 30% of the company's net profit last year, which reached KRW3.8 trillion (US$3.4bn).

The union is also asking for an increase in basic pay and a gradual extension of the retirement age up to 65, as well as free breakfast and dinner, according to the company.