Kia sells cars such as ‘Sportage’ compact SUV, ‘Soul’ cross-over and ‘Rio’ hatchback. It has already started preliminary work on identifying land for its factory and is looking at possible models and suppliers
New Delhi: Kia Motors, a subsidiary of Korean auto giant Hyundai, is all set for an India entry. The company, which sells cars across Europe, China, US and in home market Korea, feels that a play in India is critical as the country gains volumes and races towards becoming the third-biggest car market globally by 2020, as projected by many agencies.
Kia sells cars such as ‘Sportage’ compact SUV, ‘Soul’ cross-over and ‘Rio’ hatchback. It has already started preliminary work on identifying land for its factory and is looking at possible models and suppliers. “Once completed, the factory may even be used by Hyundai to manufacture of some of its models,” a top source told TOI. Hyundai is about to reach peak output at its factory near Chennai and has been cutting back on export shipments to make space for new models.
“Kia has completed numerous reports on the Indian market, including a detailed feasibility study,” a source in the know of the developments said. Kia, which sold a little over 3 million vehicles last year, has been eyeing the Indian market for many years, but has so far refrained from making investments here. The slowdown here over the past few years and its own expansion projects in many other markets, including top-seller China, resulted in a delay in investments.
The source said it may take at least two to three years before Kia starts selling cars in India. “Apart from identifying land for the factory, the company will need to take a lot of permissions and clearances from various authorities. Also, the project work for localizing some of the global models needs to be taken up,” the source said.
KIA MOTORS, Hyundai’s sibling, set to enter India