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Korean cars find few takers in Southeast Asia, sustained by Vietnam market

This undated file photo shows Kia Motors' plant in Gwangmyeong, just southwest of Seoul. (Yonhap). Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

HANOI, Dec 1, 2020, VN Express. Out of 185,595 South Korean cars sold in Southeast Asia last year, Vietnam accounted for 59 percent, VN Express reported.

While the Vietnamese auto market only ranks fourth in size in the region, its contribution to the sales of Hyundai and Kia, two major Korean brands, has been remarkable.

Since 2018 Vietnam has accounted for more than half of all South Korean car sales in Southeast Asia.

Sales of Hyundai and Kia in Vietnam in the first 10 months of 2020 rose to reached 82,129 units for a 31 percent market share.

Hyundai topped the market with sales at 57,039 vehicles, followed by Japan’s Toyota with 49,950.

Hyundai vehicles are made by TC Motor at its plant in the northern province of Ninh Binh while Truong Hai Auto (Thaco) makes Kia at its factory in the Chu Lai industrial zone in the Southern Quang Nam Province.

According to the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association, South Korean cars had a 5.2 percent share of the regional market in 2019. The figure for Japanese cars was 74.3 percent or 2.63 million units last year.

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