Sales of sport utility vehicle (SUV) in the Korean market plummeted 18.9 percent in April from the same period last year due to a lack of new models in local carmakers’ SUV lineup.
According to five local finished car makers including Hyundai Motor, Kia Motors, GM Korea, Renault Samsung Motors, Ssangyong Motor on Monday, their combined sales of SUVs amounted to 34,379 units last month, down by 18.9 percent from a year ago when the figure had reached 42,405 units. SUV sales accounted for just 25.9 percent in the total domestic auto sales, down 5 percentage points from 30.4 percent over the same period.
Industry watchers attributed the weak SUV sales to a lack of new models. The country’s largest carmaker Hyundai Motor who hasn’t released new SUV models in recent years saw the biggest drop in SUV sales last month. Hyundai Motor’s SUV sales plunged more than 40 percent on year from 13,262 units to 7,928 units in April. Its sister company Kia Motors who doesn’t have new models except for compact hybrid SUV Niro also saw its total SUV sales fall 24.5 percent from 16,908 units to 12,770 units.
Renault Samsung Motors was the only carmaker in the country who saw SUV sales increase from 1,191 units to 3,404 units, boosted by QM6 that has been enjoying continuous popularity.
By Woo Je-yoon
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]