SLOVAKIA: Kia to boost production at Zilina
Kia Motors expects to increase output at its factory in Slovakia by 5.3% next year due to rising demand for SUVs.
This will take production at the Zilina plant to 240,000 vehicles in 2011, up from 228,000 this year.
Spokesman Dusan Dvorak told journalists the factory will also increase production of engines by 50% to 450,000 units.
The plant makes the Ceed passenger car and the Kia Sportage and Hyundai ix35 SUVs.
Kia and Hyundai are looking to tap rising demand for small SUVs to gain market share in Europe where overall new-car registrations are down 5.1% this year.
Kia’s 2010 sales are up 3.8% so far this year in Europe while Hyundai has sold 3.9% more cars in the same period.
SUVs have represented more than half of Slovak output this year, up from about 20% in 2009 when 150,000 cars were assembled.