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UPDATE 1-Hyundai's local car sales hit 10-month low


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DATE 1-Hyundai's local car sales hit 10-month low

Thu Jul 1, 2010 2:01am EDT

SEOUL, July 1 (Reuters) - South Korea's Hyundai Motor Co posted a third successive monthly decline in domestic sales to a 10-month low on Thursday, hit by tough competition in the absence of new models, although the pace of decline moderated.

Hyundai (005380.KS), one of the top global performers during the financial crisis and sales slump that followed, said June domestic sales edged down 1.2 percent from May to 48,643 units, the lowest since August last year.

Overall sales, however, rose 4.6 percent to 312,388 vehicles, helped by strong performance in such markets as the United States, India and China. [iD:nSEU003077]

Hyundai is the sole Korean automaker to post falling local sales for three months in a row in the face of new model launches by affiliate Kia Motors (000270.KS) and aggressive marketing of imports by rivals such as Toyota Motor (7203.T).

Some analysts predicted Hyundai's struggle in the local market would continue until it starts introducing new models from August.

Kia Motors, South Korea's second-largest carmaker, posted record monthly sales of 178,391 vehicles, spurred by solid domestic sales growth for its new K5 sedan and Sportage R SUV models. [iD:nSEU003076]

Its first-half sales jumped 49 percent from a year ago to a record 990,261 units.

Ssangyong Motor (003620.KS), which is up for sale and has opened its books to bidders including Franco-Japanese alliance Renault-Nissan and India's Mahindra & Mahindra (MAHM.BO), reported record monthly sales of 7,422 units. [iD:nTOE66001X]

Shares in Hyundai tumbled 5 percent on Thursday, hit by a report that its parent group may bid for a $2.1 billion stake in its former affiliate Hyundai Engineering & Construction (000270.KS), a deal from which analysts see few synergy benefits. [iD:nTOE66000B]

With weak domestic sales remaining a prime source of concern, eyes are now on Hyundai's performance in the jittery U.S. market, which will be released later on Thursday.

U.S. auto sales for June are likely to slip from the pace of recent months, raising doubts about whether the industry's recovery is faltering even before it delivers the second-half upturn automakers expected. [iD:nN30214950]

(Reporting by Miyoung Kim; Additional reporting by Suh Kyungmin and Seo Jiwon; Editing by Jonathan Hopfner)

link:

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTOE66002620100701

One market where Hyundai sales aren't white hot? Home.

by Sam Abuelsamid (RSS feed) on Jul 5th 2010 at 4:14PM

2011 Hyundai Sonata – Click above for high-res image gallery

It seems that Hyundai is having a very similar problem to Buick in its home market. Overseas customers can't get enough of its products, but buyers at home are rather ho-hum. Just as Buick is huge in China, Hyundai models are selling like gangbusters in North America and Europe. However, in South Korea, Hyundai sales have dropped for three months in a row. Interestingly, sister brand Kia is seeing robust sales for its just introduced K5 (Optima in the U.S.) and Sportage with total volumes up by 49 percent compared to 2009.

Lack of fresh product is blamed for the 1.2 percent decline at Hyundai, although the new Tucson and Sonata were launched just last Fall. Hyundai has several new products coming in August with the new Elantra and Accent as well as the new Veloster coupe (or whatever it ends up being called), and those new models may spur an increase in domestic sales.

link:

http://www.autoblog.com/2010/07/05/one-market-where-hyundai-sales-arent-white-hot-home/

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