Star – South Korea’s leading automaker’s way to a larger market share in Europe crosses through Turkey. Aiming to sell half a million vehicles per annum in the continent by 2014, Hyundai relies on its recently upgraded Turkish plant to meet the increasing light segment vehicle demand in the highly competitive European market.
Manufacturing cars in Turkey since 1997, Hyundai invested USD 600 million to increase capacity in its plant in Kocaeli’s Izmit district in northwestern Turkey. Beginning September, the company will churn out the next generation of the i10 hatchback in addition to the i20 Troy at a combined rate of 200,000 units per year. Hyundai plans to export 90 percent of the vehicles manufactured in Turkey.
Established as a joint venture with Turkish Kibar Group, Hyundai Assan plant in Izmit is Hyundai’s longest-operating overseas manufacturing facility that has received EUR 1 billion of investments to date.
“The expansion of our plant in Turkey and the increase in production capacity demonstrate our commitment to Europe. Regional plants allow us to build the right vehicles for the region..”, Allan Rushforth, Senior Vice President and COO of Hyundai Motor Europe commented on the company’s latest investment in Turkey.
Home to global automakers Ford, Fiat, Toyota, Honda, Renault as well as Hyundai, Turkey’s automotive industry is forecasted to manufacture 1.1 million vehicles in 2013. The highly-developed industry exported USD 19 billion worth of vehicles and parts last year.