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Hyundai Motor In Brief

201112010000 No. 1084

Hyundai Motor in Brief


Established in 1967, Hyundai Motor Company has grown into the Hyundai Motor Group, which was ranked as the world’s fifth-largest automaker since 2007 and includes over two dozen auto-related subsidiaries and affiliates.


Hyundai Motor, which exported its first independently-made vehicle, the Pony, in 1976, now exports over one million high-quality vehicles ranging from sedans, SUVs, trucks and buses.


In 2010, Hyundai Motor sold about 3.6 million cars worldwide, up 16.3 percent from 2009.


Hyundai Motor, South Korea’s largest automaker, sold 659,565 cars in the Korean domestic market in 2010, reaching a market share of about 45 percent. Outside Korea, the company sold about 2.9 million cars in 2010 in over 186 countries through some 5,300 dealers.

Hyundai’s New Brand Statement:


Hyundai Motor Co., the world’s fastest-growing automotive company by brand, officially announced its new brand direction and statement at the 2011 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

Hyundai’ new brand statement is “New Thinking. New Possibilities.” This encompasses Hyundai’s new brand concept, “Modern Premium,” which aims to provide customers with emotional value and experiences beyond expectations through new thinking and new possibilities. The new brand direction also captures the spirit of change at the automaker, which has shown dramatic growth in all areas of business.


“Today, customers do not believe that expensive cars with unnecessary technology are premium,” Euisun Chung, Vice Chairman of Hyundai Motor said during a speech at the Detroit motor show. “Instead, they want their core needs fulfilled at an accessible price and with a car that exceeds their expectations; a car that reflects their values and the times in which they live.”

“Hyundai is not just a company that makes cars. Hyundai is a company that creates new possibilities. Our goal is not to become the biggest car company. Our goal is to become the most-loved car company and a trusted lifetime partner of our owners,” said Vice Chairman Chung.

While traditional premium is usually linked with high prices for the privileged few, Hyundai’s `Modern Premium’ concept is based on the idea that high quality does not necessarily require a high price for a limited class. Hyundai will offer high-end, high-quality values at a surprisingly attainable price and values that customers never experienced or expected. This will not be limited to just the product, but throughout Hyundai’s entire business, operations and services.

Hyundai’s new thinking and change in attitude has already been applied in various areas with proven results, such as the highly-successful `Hyundai Assurance Program’ launched in the U.S. market last year and the 2011 Sonata, which shook up the mid-size family sedan segment with its dynamic `fluidic sculpture’ designs and unrivalled powertrain package. Genesis, which won the prestigious North American Car of The Year award in 2009, also redefined luxury with its attainable price compared to its award-winning powertrain and advanced audio and convenience features.

At the 2011 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Hyundai unveiled its latest creations that capture this spirit: Veloster, a three-door compact coupe that brings innovation to the segment. Veloster offers a coupe design with the functionality of a hatch and a unique third door on the passenger-side for easy rear-seat access.


Global Operations


Employing over 78,000 people worldwide, Hyundai Motor is implementing a new global policy aimed at localization. This includes product development, design, sales, marketing, and consumer services to satisfy local customers’ tastes as well as that of the global market.

Currently Hyundai Motor has six overseas plants in the U.S., India, China, Turkey, the Czech Republic and Russia. The company will add a seventh plant by 2012, in Brazil. Hyundai Motor today has a combined global production capacity of about 3.91 million units a year (Korea Domestic: 1.86 million / Overseas: 2.05 million).


Korea Production

Hyundai has three plants in Korea that have a combined capacity of about 1.86 million units a year. The plants are located in Ulsan, Asan and Jeonju.

The Ulsan plant is the world’s single largest automobile plant. The mammoth-sized Ulsan complex sits on 1,200 acres and is Hyundai Motor’s main production plant, comprising five independent plants. It employs over 34,000 workers capable of producing 5,600 vehicles daily. The plant also has its own port where up to three 42,000 ton ships can anchor at the same time. The plant is the birthplace of the Korean automobile industry and is a self-contained facility that operates its own fire station, hospital and security vehicles. The plant is also equipped with cutting-edge facilities to protect the environment, such as waste water and sewage treatment facilities securing Hyundai Motor’s position as an eco-friendly company.

The Asan Plant, which mainly produces passenger vehicles for export, rests on 440 acres with a 4 million sq. ft. building that consists of production lines for machine press, auto frames, paint, assembly, engine and a materials plant. It is an entirely self-contained, independent automobile production complex that is capable of producing 260,000 mid- to large-size passenger vehicles annually.

The Jeonju Plant occupies a total of 317 acres of land and has 4.3 million sq. ft. in production space. It specializes in producing mid- to large-sized buses of 2.5 tons or more, trucks, and specialty vehicles. The Jeonju plant is capable of producing 70,000 units per year and in terms of the plant’s scale, it is deemed to be the world’s largest commercial vehicle production plant.



Overseas Production



In May 2005, Hyundai Motor opened a $1.1 billion plant in Alabama, the company’s first North American manufacturing facility, which is also its most technologically advanced. Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama (HMMA), which has a maximum capacity of 300,000 vehicles per year, began operations in 2006 with the production of the Sonata sedan. The plant started producing Santa Fe sport utility vehicles in the spring of 2006.

Within one year, HMMA reached 10th place in the product quality category among 37 plants in North America. In 2008, HMMA was chosen as the most productive plant in North America in the Midsize CUV category, for its Santa Fe model. HMMA took 22.6 hours to complete a Santa Fe, one of Hyundai’s best-selling SUVs. Currently, HMMA produces the all-new Sonata and Elantra.

HMMA brings Hyundai Motor’s commitment to the North American market full circle. Since 2001, Hyundai Motor has invested more than $200 million in design and testing facilities throughout the U.S. With a $30 million design center in Irvine, Calif., a $60 million proving ground in the Mojave Desert in California, and a $117 million technical center in Ann Arbor, Mich., Hyundai Motor is able to bring vehicles to life from design, to testing and now to production, in the United States.



Hyundai Motor India (HMI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hyundai Motor, is the second-largest carmaker in India. Hyundai opened its second plant in India in February 2008, a decade after it began operations in the country. The US$1 billion new plant, which was completed in a record 13 months, doubles Hyundai Motor’s capacity in India to 600,000 units a year. The new plant is located within the same 525 acre plot in Sriperumbudur, in the state of Tamil Nadu, adjacent to the first plant.


The new plant is dedicated largely to the production of Hyundai Motor’s latest offerings in India — the i20 and the i10, winner of the most prestigious ‘Car of the Year’ awards from the leading automotive magazines and TV channels like Business Standard Motoring, CNBC-TV18, NDTV Car & Bike and Overdrive magazine.

Building the i10 (A-segment) and i20 (B-segment) cars for world markets, the Indian subsidiary is Hyundai’s de facto global hub for small car production.

In 2009, Hyundai opened a US$25 million R&D center in HITECH City in Hyderabad, India. The new facility will enable Hyundai to respond even more quickly to changing customer needs across the world and will serve as an important platform for the development of compact cars.



Beijing Hyundai Motor Company (BHMC), a 50-50 joint venture between Hyundai Motor and Beijing Automotive Holdings, was established in 2002. It began operations in China by producing Sonata in December 2002 and in 2003, its first full year of sales reached 52,129 units, making Beijing Hyundai China’s thirteenth largest automaker. Sales soared to 144,088 units in 2004 and by 2005, sales had catapulted to 233,668 units making Beijing Hyundai China’s fourth best selling brand.

In February 2008, Beijing Hyundai Motor Company (BHMC) set a record by surpassing one million units in cumulative production in just five years and two months, the shortest period among automobile companies in China. In the same year, Hyundai added a second plant to BHMC, doubling its production capacity to 600,000 units and is now in the process of building its No. 3 plant, which will boost production to 1 million units by 2012.

In 2010, Beijing Hyundai’s sales rose 23.3 percent to 704,441 units from 571,234 units in 2009. Beijing Hyundai currently builds nine models: EF Sonata, Ling Xiang (NF Sonata), Elantra, Yuedong (China-exclusive Elantra model), i30, Tucson, ix35, Accent and Verna.



Hyundai Motor began operations at its Turkey plant, located in northwestern Turkey, from July 1997. The plant, Hyundai Assan Otomotive Sanayi Ve Ticaret (HAOS), was expanded in 2006 and produces the Accent and Matrix vehicles. Starting from May 2010, the plant also began production of the i20. The facilities’ maximum capacity is 100,000 units per year.



Hyundai Motor began construction of its 1.1 billion euro manufacturing plant in Nosovice, Czech Republic in April 2007 and began production in November 2008. Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Czech (HMMC), a fully-owned subsidiary of Seoul-based Hyundai Motor, has a production capacity of 300,000 units per year. The plant manufactures four models: i30, i30 CW (Crossover Wagon), ix35 and ix20.


As part of its preparations to better serve the needs of its European customers, Hyundai Motor invested $50 million Euros in a European Design and Technical Center in Russelsheim, Germany which designed the i30 and estate wagon. In 2007, it opened a new European sales and marketing headquarters in Offenbach, Germany to better support local sales. The Czech plant is the final link in the chain providing Hyundai Motor with the full range of local capabilities to serve the European market from design and engineering, to production, marketing, sales and after-service.



Hyundai Motor in June 2008 began construction of its plant in St. Petersburg to establish a local production and sales base in Russia, which will be a stepping stone to expansion in the CIS and Eastern Europe.

Hyundai invested a total of US$500 million in Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Russia (HMMR), which officially began production in January 2011. HMMR, the first by a foreign automaker in Russia to employ “full-cycle” manufacturing, will reach a maximum capacity of 150,000 units by 2012. The plant, which will include storage facilities and a shipping area, was built on an area of about 2 million square meters. The floor space takes up about 83,000 square meters.

HMMR currently produces the Solaris, which features Hyundai’s eye-catching fluidic-sculpture design and innovative features to meet Russia’s demanding climate.



Hyundai started construction on its seventh overseas plant in Piracicaba, Sao Paulo state in February 2011, to bring its manufacturing presence in so-called BRIC countries to full circle.

Hyundai, which is investing a total of US$600 million in Hyundai Motor Brazil (HMB), aims to start production at its new plant in the second half of 2012, eventually reaching a maximum capacity of 150,000 units annually. The first model to be produced at HMB will be a new B-segment car specifically designed for the Central & South American markets, while other models will be added according to market conditions.

The plant, which is located 160 km northwest of Sao Paulo city, will be built on a 1.39 million square meter site, while the plant will have a floor space of 69,000 square meters, featuring complete vehicle production facilities such as stamping, welding, painting, assembly and module lines.


Future cars


Hyundai’s latest concept vehicle, Curb, was unveiled during the 2011 Detroit International Auto Show. Curb is a compact Urban Activity Vehicle (UAV) for the next generation of Hyundai buyers. Curb is also a test bed for future Hyundai Blue Link™ and vehicle connectivity technology.

The inspiration for Curb came from the need to evolve Hyundai’s “Fluidic Sculpture” design language for younger buyers. Hyundai designers wanted to create a vehicle loaded with technology that was at home in an urban environment with potholes and densely packed nightclubs on the streets. The vehicle needed to secure the advanced Blue Link and connectivity features against impact and shock. From these ideas, the ‘technology rugged’ design direction for Curb was formed.

The Curb’s design starts with the glass that spills into the hood and wraps around the cowl, covering the A pillars. This look resembles the face shield of a sport bike motorcycle helmet. Beneath the glass are structural trusses with the glass panels applied like a shield.

The striking profile is dominated by a boomerang trajectory bodyside line. This dominant line brings the entire design together and reinforces the feeling of strength with its positive and negative shapes. The thin, sleek headlamps and taillamps dive into the vehicle, creating the illusion that they are connected into the engine compartment or interior. To complete the ‘technology rugged’ look, designers added 22-inch five spoke wheels and Michelin tires with a custom saffron colored tread pattern to match the interior. These wheels have spokes set into the tires to make them have a more pronounced profile. To enter the Curb, one simply drags their finger across a touch pad to open the doors.

At startup, the Curb’s numerous LED lights illuminate sequentially, starting with the outside rows and the Curb’s badging illuminates through the paint. Shamze Custom Coatings developed the One-Way paint finish allowing the Curb name to illuminate through the paint.

Connectivity is the theme for the interior, which is why information flows seamlessly from outside to inside of the Curb. A large acrylic screen with multiple zones allows information to be passed between passengers all via a touchscreen that appears endless. The steering wheel itself is an opaque surface with a monitor showing through. There are also monitors in the back of the headrests.

Cameras also replace the side mirrors and are linked to the HUD. The screen can also display vehicle diagnostics, download apps and act as a video phone all with a single touch sensor control strip provided by Methode. 


Saffron accents inside match the ones on the tires. The saffron accents gradiate across the seats, which are made of super-stretch, fast-drying board short material. Thin seats have been visible in concept cars for decades. Now there are materials like those found in running shoes that can make seats like these possible. These thin seats maximize interior space while supplying surprising comfort. The rear bench seat also has forward and aft movement.   


The Curb is powered by a turbocharged 1.6-liter Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) four-cylinder engine mated to Direct Shift Gearbox (DSG). This powertrain develops 175 horsepower and 169 lb. ft. of torque. By adding Idle Stop and Go (ISG) technology, the Curb would deliver 30+ miles per gallon in the city and 40+ miles per gallon on the highway.   


Hyundai Blue Drive


To address the global warming problem, Hyundai Motor in November 2008 announced Hyundai Blue Drive™, a sub-brand which will bring to market a range of eco-friendly products and technologies designed to reduce CO2 emissions and improve fuel efficiency.

In 2009, Hyundai introduced high mileage “Blue” editions of its Accent and Elantra models. These models will deliver outstanding fuel economy without adding thousands of dollars to the price. In fact, “Blue” models will be priced lower than other models, assuring they will be both efficient and economical. 

Hyundai is focused on achieving an excellent MPG-per-dollar ratio with these models. Fuel-efficient modifications include low-rolling-resistance tires, enhanced aerodynamics, revised engine calibrations, fuel-efficient steering systems and reduced final drive ratios to deliver even higher mileage and lower emissions than today’s models. These new high mileage editions will be identified with unique “Blue” badging.


Hybrid Electric Vehicles

Hyundai Motor introduced its first hybrid electric vehicle in the Korean market in July 2009: A compact-sized LPG model, the Elantra LPI (Liquefied Petroleum Injection) hybrid, a car that uses both Liquefied Petroleum Gas and electricity. This is the world’s first hybrid vehicle fuelled by liquefied petroleum, and was also the world’s first car to use lithium-ion polymer rechargeable batteries. In 2010, Hyundai Motor introduced a mid-sized gasoline hybrid based on the all-new Sonata platform.


Hyundai has been working on hybrid electric vehicle technology since 1994 and has provided Getz and Accent hybrid vehicles to Korean government agencies in pilot testing programs.


The mass production of hybrid cars started in 2009 is a major turning point for Hyundai, which has increased its competitiveness in the environmentally-friendly car sector, an area automakers worldwide are counting on for their strategic survival in the next-generation business sector.



Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle

Hyundai Motor completed development of its next- generation hydrogen fuel cell vehicle -- the Tucson (ix35) Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle – in December 2010 and began testing in early 2011 with an eye toward 2015 mass production.

Hyundai’s third-generation FCEV is equipped with a 100-kilowatt fuel cell system and two hydrogen storage tanks (700bar). The SUV can travel 650 kilometers on a single charge – a range equal to a gasoline-powered car. It can start in temperatures as low as minus 25 degrees Celsius.  

The Tucson (ix35) FCEV’s range is a 76-percent improvement over the second-generation Tucson FCEV, which was limited to 370 kilometers on one charge. The new model gets gasoline equivalent fuel efficiency of 31 kilometers per liter, a 15-percent improvement over the previous version.


More than 95 percent of the Tucson (ix35) FCEV’s major components were made with Korean technology through close collaboration with about 120 domestic auto parts manufacturers. Overall volume of the fuel cell system was downsized by 20-percent compared to the previous system via modularization of bulky parts in the fuel cell system including fuel cell stack, balance of plant(BOP), inverter and high voltage junction box.


Hyundai took part in the `Learning Demonstration Program’ organized by the U.S. Department of Energy between 2004 and 2009. Next year, 48 Tucson (ix35) FCEV’s will be part of a `Domestic Fleet Program’ supported by the Korean government. 


Its hydrogen vehicles have so far registered more than 2 million kilometers. Hyundai plans to make a limited supply of the Tucson (ix35) FCEV in 2012 and begin mass production in 2015.


Sports Marketing

Football is a key marketing tool Hyundai employs to build awareness around the world. The company’s association with the World Cup has proven very helpful in raising brand awareness and attracting new visitors to Hyundai showrooms worldwide.

Hyundai is one of the strongest supporters of football in the world having served as the official sponsor of the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea / Japan™, the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany™ and 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa ™ as well as many other FIFA tournaments. The company has extended its strategic sponsorship agreement with FIFA to cover the 2022 FIFA World Cup™ in Qatar.


Hyundai has recently been expanding its sports marketing activities worldwide, including golf and cricket. In February 2011, Hyundai signed a deal with the International Cricket Council (ICC) to become its first, official car partner from 2011 to 2015.


Hyundai Motor in Numbers


1. Sales


(unit: thousand)

























YoY change %





* Hyundai currently has 6 overseas plants (U.S, China, India, Turkey, Czech and Russia)


2. Top Selling Models




Foreign countries

Korea domestic











  Accent (Verna)


Avante (Elantra)





Porter (H-100)





Starex (H-1)










Santa Fe




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