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Hyundai, Kia eco-friendly car exports top 100,000 units in Q1

This photo provided by Kia Corp. shows the company

This photo of Kia Corp. showcases the company’s all-electric EV6 sedan. (Kia Corp.)

South Korea’s leading automakers Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Corp. saw their combined exports of eco-friendly cars produce more than 100,000 units in the first three months of this year, thanks to solid sales of all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. shown on Sunday.

In the January-March period of this year, the two automakers exported a total of 111,252 units of environmentally friendly cars — gasoline hybrid, plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles — according to data collected by the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA). The number is 28.6 percent higher than a year ago.

By each automaker, Hyundai’s exports of eco-friendly cars rose 19.7 percent to 56,077 units. Kia’s exports of such cars rose 39 percent to 55,175 units, KAMA data showed.

It is the first time that the combined exports of environmentally friendly cars from the two automakers have crossed the 100,000 mark in the first quarter. The two companies’ annual exports of eco-friendly cars were 373,007 units in 2021 and 269,874 units in 2020.

The export jump of the two automakers was supported by solid sales of all-electric cars, such as the IONIQ 5 and EV6, as well as plug-in hybrid versions of Hyundai’s Santa Fe and Kia’s Sorento SUVs, according to KAMA data.

In the first quarter, their total exports of all-electric cars rose 80.5 percent year-on-year to 50,391 units. Kia exported the largest 16,336 units of the EV6, followed by 15,219 units of Hyundai’s IONIQ 5 and 12,024 units of its Niro EV. Hyundai’s independent Genesis brand exported 594 units of its all-electric GV60.

Over the same period, outbound sales of plug-in hybrids from the two automakers rose 47.8 percent to 12,390 units.

Despite the strong performance of all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, exports of Hyundai’s Nexo hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle contracted 87.7 percent to 50 units in the first quarter, compared to 407 units a year earlier. (Yonhap)

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