KIA Motors is claiming export-led record results for May despite the current domestic market slump.

Compared to the same month last year, May export CBU (built-up) sales climbed 37% from 42,307 to 58,100 units while May CBU retail sales rose 20% from 47,649 in 2003 to a record breaking 57,368 in May.

Year to date CBU retail sales were up 13.5% from 216,689 to 245,968 units. CBU exports for January to May inclusive rose 37.8% from 206,627 units to 284,762.

“These new numbers show that there is a rising tide of consumer demand for Kia vehicles and our efforts to improve our brand image are paying dividends,” said Yong-Hwan Kim, COO of the international business division of Kia Motors.

“We are very much on track to becoming a global top five automaker by 2010.”