While some traditional automakers express concerns about a slowdown in electric vehicle (EV) demand, Kia and parent company Hyundai are confident in the strong interest from U.S. consumers. Company executives have stated that EV demand in the U.S. remains robust, even as other automakers announce delays in their EV projects.
During the opening of the Los Angeles Auto Show, Hyundai and Kia executives emphasized the growing demand for EVs in the U.S. market. Jose Munoz, Hyundai’s COO, revealed that the company’s EV sales have been consistently doubling year over year. Munoz expressed his optimism for battery electrics and highlighted investments in their battery electric plant in Savannah, Georgia.
The only obstacle that Hyundai faces in meeting this demand is its production capacity. Munoz admitted that if more capacity were available, they could sell even more EVs. To address this, Hyundai broke ground on a new EV manufacturing plant in Ulsan, South Korea, and plans to build a $7.6 billion EV and battery factory in Savannah, Georgia.
Kia echoed Hyundai’s confidence, with Steven Center, COO of Kia America, stating that EV volumes will continue to increase despite uncertain economic conditions. He emphasized their organic growth and the expectation that the EV segment will contribute significantly to that growth.
Hyundai recently formed a strategic partnership with Amazon, allowing the brand’s vehicles to be sold on the online platform. Additionally, Hyundai announced plans to raise wages at a U.S. factory in 2024 following strikes by the United Auto Workers union against other automakers.
In conclusion, while other automakers express reservations about EV demand, Kia and Hyundai embrace the strong interest in electric vehicles within the U.S. market. Both companies are making significant investments in manufacturing capacity to meet the growing demand for EVs.