Hyundai says green vehicles will account for half of US sales by 2030

Posted on : 2022-01-10 17:44 KST Modified on : 2022-01-10 17:44 KST
Hyundai overtook Honda to make it into the top 5 brands of cars sold in the US
Jose Munoz, Hyundai Motor’s global chief operating officer and head of the automaker’s North American business. (provided by Hyundai Motor)
Jose Munoz, Hyundai Motor’s global chief operating officer and head of the automaker’s North American business. (provided by Hyundai Motor)

The Hyundai Motor Group says it’s planning for eco-friendly cars — including the Ioniq 5 electric vehicle (EV), which will soon hit the US market — to account for half of all its sales in the US by 2030. Last year, Hyundai pushed past Japanese automaker Honda to become the fifth largest automaker in the US market in terms of local sales.

Jose Munoz, Hyundai Motor’s global chief operating officer (COO) and head of the automaker’s operations in North America, said on Wednesday that eco-friendly vehicles currently account for about 10% of Hyundai automobiles sold in the US and that the company is gearing up to raise that proportion to 40%-50% by 2030. Munoz made the remarks during an interview with the Korean press at Resorts World Las Vegas.

The strategy at Hyundai and its Genesis brand is for electric vehicles, hydrogen vehicles and hybrid vehicles to reach half of all sales in the American market within nine years.

“Battery EV sales have grown more than 130% year over year,” Munoz said, referring to Hyundai’s performance last year. “In addition, we are launching Ioniq as a sub-brand in the US.”

“One of the criteria to become an Ioniq dealer [in the US] is to provide charging infrastructure,” Munoz said.

“First, we have made an agreement with Electrify America and then, as an example, an Ioniq 5 that we just launched in the market is going to allow the customers to charge at low cost for two years,” the Hyundai executive said.

Electrify America is a subsidiary of Volkswagen that manages a network of EV charging stations in the country.

According to data provided by Hyundai, companies belonging to the Hyundai Motor Group (including Hyundai, Genesis and Kia) sold 1.49 million vehicles in the US market last year, representing a year-over-year increase of about 22%, or 260,000 units.

That was the Hyundai Motor Group’s best year ever in the US, with its market share rising from 8% in 2020 to 11% in 2021. That means that last year, 1 in every 10 vehicles sold in the US belonged to the Hyundai family of cars.

Hyundai advanced to fifth place in terms of vehicles sold, after Toyota (2.33 million), General Motors (2.20 million), Ford (1.89 million) and Stellantis (1.78 million). Significantly, the Korean automaker edged out Japanese rival Honda, which held the No. 5 spot in 2020.

Japanese carmaker Toyota leapfrogged General Motors, which had been the undisputed champion of the American market, seizing the top spot in US sales for the first time ever.

“We have overtaken Honda as a group [in the US],” Munoz said, noting that Hyundai is now “the second Asian brand in the US market only after Toyota.”

“We have a lot of opportunity to continue to grow,” he said.

“I think our global headquarters have done a very good job in optimizing the supply and the production,” Munoz said, adding that “the percentage of lost production has been lower than that of our competitors.”

But Munoz noted that challenges remain in terms of vehicle chips and logistics. He said that the company needs to work on acquiring a stable supply chain that can use locally produced chips and other parts.

“We will produce electric vehicles in the US,” he said.

By Park Jong-o, staff reporter

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