Korean manufacturers’ share of the United States passenger car market has passed
five per cent, the Korea Automobile Association said.

Quoting Ward’s Automotive Reports, the association said that 154,806 Korean
cars were sold in the first four months of this year, snapping up a 5.6 percent
share of the market.

For the same period last year, the Korean industry’s share was 4.1 percent,
or 123,722 vehicles.



Detroit’s ‘big three’ – General Motors, Ford and DaimlerChrysler – lost share
from 57.6 percent to 53.7 percent while Japan’s slice crept up from 30 to 32
per cent.

The association said that Korean cars are gaining popularity in the U.S. market,
thanks to improved quality and diverse models.

In the last year Hyundai, for example, has introduced a new compact Elantra
sedan to critical acclaim and added the luxury XG30 to its range at a price
that undercuts domestic and Japanese brand rivals by thousands of dollars.

Affiliate Kia has also launched the well equipped mid-sized Optima sedan which
is based on Hyundai technology.

The Koreans are not on a roll everywhere, though. Despite the launching of
those same new models that have brought increased success in North America,
Western European Korean passenger car sales fell 31.6 percent during the January-April
period to 135,014 units, compared with a year ago.

That reduced the Korean car makers’ share to 2.5 per cent from 3.6 per
cent a year earlier.

To view related research reports, please follow the links

world’s car manufacturers: A financial and operating review

regional report: North America

country report: South Korea