Kia Motors targets 3 lakh unit sales in 2 years
Hyderabad: South Korean automotive company Kia Motors is looking to sell 300,000 units of its vehicles produced in India in the next two to two-and-a-half years. The company that announced its plans to enter India about two years back is all set to start production at its manufacturing facility set up in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh.
With a production capacity of three lakh units, Kia Motors plant is almost ready and the first vehicle to be shipped out will be the compact SUV based on the SP concept. The car was showcased at the Auto Expo 2018 and is being made keeping in mind the Indian market and needs.
Speaking to reporters, Manohar Bhat, head, sales and marketing, Kia Motors India said, “We will be launching our first compact SUV based on SP concept vehicle in the first half of 2019. And will successively launch the second model after a gap of 6-9 months and third after another 6-9 months and so on. In the next two-three years we are looking at launching four to five models of Kia vehicles in the next two to three years.”
The Korean automaker has over 14 manufacturing facilities globally with sales of over 2.8 million units. If the target in India is achieved, then it will contribute to about 10 per cent of overall global sales of the company. It has so far invested close to $1 billion in setting up its operations in India.
On the plans ahead, Bhat said, “We showcased 18 models at the Auto Expo and have received good response for all the models. We will try to maximize our level of localisation in terms of production and major part of the production will be for the domestic market. We will have a small portion of sales dedicated to exports as well. The plant is set to create direct employment for 3,000 people.”
Kia Motors globally is also engaged in the manufacturing of defence vehicles and when asked if they would be looking at something similar here, Bhat informed that they are in talks with the government here.
“However, we will not be producing specifically in India but will be importing our vehicles as and when we have a formal nod from the government and the defence sector,” he added.