By on April 8, 2014

holden-plant

In the span of 24 hours, Australia inked two free trade agreements with both Japan and South Korea. Even though Holden, Ford and Toyota had already committed to ending auto manufacturing in Australia, it’s hard not to see the agreements as the last nail in the coffin of Australia’s once strong auto industry.

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By on March 7, 2014

Holden Cruze

As Chevrolet slowly exits from the European market while Holden exits the production line altogether, General Motors is mulling over increasing exports to Australia out of South Korea.

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By on January 17, 2014
southkorea-02

Imported vehicle sales by country. Source: Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers Association

Companies building cars in Canada are lobbying at the last minute to, kill an “imminent” free trade deal between Canada and South Korea that the automakers say would damage the Canadian auto industry and the greater Canadian economy. Ford Motor Co. of Canada Ltd. president and chief executive, Dianne Craig, said on Thursday that the U.S.-Korea trade agreement enacted in 2007 has been a “disaster” for auto makers. Craig urged the Conservative government not to make the same mistake as the United States.

“We understand that [the Canadian government] need[s] to look for what’s in the best interests of Canada,” Ms. Craig said in an interview with Toronto’s Globe & Mail. “But, frankly, autos are the greatest driver of GDP and we think we need to have a pretty strong voice in this conversation. This is not good for autos, which means it’s not good for the economy, which means it’s not good for Canadians.”

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By on August 30, 2013

2014 Kia Cadenza Exterior, Picture Courtesy of Alex L. Dykes

Kia has big plans for America. The Korean brand that was written off in the 1990s, and is best known for making inexpensive cars with long warranties, isn’t planning an assault on the mass market. Kia has bigger plans: compete head on with Lexus, BMW and Mercedes. Say what? Yep. By 2017 Kia promises they will be ready. Rather than leaping right into the market, Kia is dipping their toes into the murky waters of the near-luxury pool. In many ways the near-luxury segment is a harder place to compete. This segment is full of aspiring brands trying to move up (Buick and Cadillac), brands that are floundering (Acura), brands that are treading water (Volvo and Lexus’s FWD models ), brands trying to expand down (Mercedes with the CLA) and brands that have no idea what their mission is (Lincoln). Into this smorgasbord lands a sedan that managed to be the most exciting car I have driven this year and the most awkwardly named. Now that I have that spoiler out of the way, let’s dive into the Credenza. I mean Cadenza.

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By on May 2, 2013

chevrolet-onix-2013-01. Photo courtesy motoresemmovimento.blogspot.com

Soon after TTAC’s article on General Motors’ new model make over, the naysayers were out in force. Commenter jpolicke for example suggested selling GM stock if its future relied on engineering coming from South Korea. However, signs abound that this time around GM is finding its way. Let’s examine some of the pros and cons:

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By on December 6, 2012

While Japan may be a “closed market” in the eyes of some, imported cars from America are all the rage in South Korea. Honda is planning on sending no fewer than six American-made cars; the Civic, Accord, Odyssey, CR-V, Crosstour and Pilot will all be sent to South Korea as Honda attempts to become a net exporter of American made vehicles.

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By on August 5, 2012

France is asking the EU to look into an uptick in South Korean car imports, which could possibly result in tarrifs being slapped on the vehicles, despite an EU-South Korean free trade agreement.

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By on May 24, 2012

Despite an explicit suggestion from Opel’s own CEO that Chevrolet cars could be built in European Opel plants, GM Korea has shut the door on such an idea.

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By on May 1, 2012

Is this another “senseless provocation” by “imperialist American dogs“, or do Koreans really want to buy the Chevrolet Corvette?

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By on January 20, 2012

The website for midwives the voice of union activists Labornotes reports that a South Korean Hyundai Motor worker set himself afire Sunday after management refused his request to slow down the line. The 44-year-old unionist, Shin Sung-hun, is in critical condition. According to the site, Shin poured paint thinner over and set fire to himself . (Read More…)

By on November 8, 2011

Over the last few weeks we have visited PanamaColombiaChina and the USA in 1975. This week I thought we would go back to Asia for a little trip to South Korea.

The kingdom of Hyundai and Kia is up there with Germany and Japan when it comes to chauvinistic tastes: having an import model in the Top 30 best-sellers is a rare occurrence…

If you’re not a fan of Hyundais and Kia, well am afraid this article is not for you! But it’s ok, I’ve prepared 159 other countries for you to visit in my blog, and I can tell you it is 아주 좋은 (very good), so click away!

Hyundai and Kia truly are the kings of South Korea, both accounting for 9 of the 10 best-selling models last month…

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