Kia, the first car maker to export cars from Korea, dispatched its four millionth car, a Sorento for the USA, on 31 October 2003, breaking two records with 57,421 cars exported in October setting a new monthly record for Kia and shipments to the USA passing 30,000 for the first time.

Kia exports started in 1975 when a pickup version of the Brisa sedan was exported to Greece and the Middle East. The Korean car maker now exports to 190 countries.

The top three exports for October were the Rio, followed by the Carnival/Sedona minivan and the Sorento.

Shipments to North America passed the 30,000 mark for the first time, with 30,358 cars boarding ships at Kia's shipping terminal in Pyongtaek bound for the United States and Canada, Kia's two largest export markets.

The company's performance in October continues a very strong year. In the first three quarters of the year Kia has seen export shipments increase by 23.7% over 2002. The company claims to be the fastest growing brand in Europe - where sales exceeded 100,000 units for the first time this year - and in Canada, a market the company only entered in 1999.