Hyundai Announces Jaw-Dropping February
Major carmakers around the world had their eyes on Hyundai’s growing muscle for a while. In the business, you call that benchmarking. Now, the benchmarking sensors sound alarm: Hyundai announced yesterday that its February global sales jumped 28 percent from a year earlier.
According to Reuters, strong overseas sales could more than offset that offset a lull in sales at home in Korea. Hyundai’s U.S. sales jumped 18 percent. Hyundai’s overseas sales rose 32.5 percent to 307,332 in February compared to 231,879 for the same month a year ago. Domestic sales were up slightly at 53,647 compared to 49,405 a year ago.
People like Nissan/Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn expect the worldwide car market to expand by 4 percent from 75 million last year to 78 million in 2012. If Hyundai keeps that up, they will book a serious gain of market share this year.
Hyundai Motor Group (which also includes Kia as Hyundai owns the majority holdings) make less expensive cars because they pay their workers crap wages. I'll let you do your own research, but Hyundai has one of the worst labor records on the planet. They are a corrupt Korean chaebol (family mafia) run by the sons of the original founder (one son committed suicide when he was convicted for funneling $500 million to the North Koreans.) They are highly subsidized by the South Korean government and another of the sons (CEO of Hyundai Heavy Industries) is a member of parliament. Hyundai doesn't play on a level playing field and it never has.
This week I am in Canada and Mr. Budget has rented me a Hyundai Accent sedan. I do not know what the trim level is but it seems very well-equipped with cruise control, radio adjustment on the steering wheel, a nice USB port and so forth. I am not too excited about the shift-it-yourself feature of the auto transmission so I just ignore it while driving. Handling is surprisingly good although acceleration is not startling but perhaps because I am driving in the "eco" mode. The car is very well put together and does not rattle or creak, but then the example I have has 1800 kms on it. I would think for most people the Accent would be a real value proposition.
The computers most of us are using were probably built by chinese prisoners and 12 year old orphans. It's a damn shame that economies are built on exploitation. Thank goodness we and the S. Koreans don't operate this way.
Hyunkia may be all the rage today, but I still don't trust them. Besides all the 40 mpg craziness, their propaganda makes outrageous claims. Enough so that it should raise the suspision of even the most casual car buyer. In Brazil they offer one of the longest warranties in the market. But parts are just unavailable. Friend had minor accident in a Soul. Needed to change bumper, fender, hood, grille and one headlamp. Took around 3 or 4 months to get all the parts! Seriously, WTF? Then there's their marketing. Their last Elantra commercial claimed the Elantra was the best car made in the history of the automobile. Seriously, they had the gumption to claim that. The new piece toned it down a bit, but now they're saying the Elantra is the best car ever in its segment in history!!! Tney also claim that the Elantra won the Best Car in Show Prize at the recent Detroit Auto Show (did they?) and that said show and prize are the most sought after of all auto shows in the world...Really? Wonder what the organizers of the Paris, Tokyo or Franfurt (to name just a few) shows have to say about that. In a nutshell, tone it down Hyundai and you'll be more credible. You don't have to shout it if you're really good.