There were mixed financial results for the Hyundai automotive group’s two brands for the third quarter with one reporting an 8% decline in net profit while the other jumped 21% further into the black.

The Hyundai brand reported consolidated net profit for the three months ended 30 September rose KRW329bn to KRW1.918 trillion (US$1.7bn) as strong overseas ales overshadowed the impact of a weaker won and the European debt crisis. This was up from KRW1.589 trillion a year earlier, driven by higher average selling prices and record low incentives and inventories, the company said.

Operating profit rose 19% to KRW1.995 trillion in the July-September period from KRW1.678 trillion. Sales rose 15% to KRW18.954 trillion from KRW16.553 trillion.

Quarter on quarter, net profit fell 17% from KRW2.307 trillion as fewer working days resulted in decreased sales, Hyundai noted.

Meanwhile affiliate KIA attributed its decline in net profit for the quarter to foreign exchange losses and low equity gains.

Net profit was KRW648bn (US$587m), down from KRW705bn profit a year earlier, the company said. Sales, however, were up almost 15% to KRW9.99 trillion.

The company said “enhanced competitiveness” had helped it weather the global financial crisis and economic slowdown although business prospects in general “remain gloomy” in the fourth quarter.

Kia said in a statement: “We will do the utmost to overcome the crisis by strengthening sales efforts and producing better cars.”

The company sold about 611,000 vehicles during the third quarter, up 19.3%, led by strong demand for the K5 sedan and Sportage SUV.

Kia posted net profit of KRW2.73 trillion for the first nine months of the year, up 45.2% year on year, while operating income increased 51.4% to KRW2.69 trillion.