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Record sales in Canada may convince Hyundai to open a new manufacturing plant in the country, says Steve Kelleher, President and CEO of the company’s Canadian subsidiary.
Hyundai sales in Canada are projected to reach a record 95,000 in 2009, up 25 percent, while the overall market is down 15.5%. Hyundai has posted record results for seven straight months, pushing the company to sixth place in Canadian sales.
Kelleher says he hopes the record numbers will convince Hyundai to open a new manufacturing plant in Canada by 2012.
“I don’t have a real firm number, but I’ve kind of got people listening to the idea that if we get to 150,000 vehicles annually in Canada in three years, we got to take another hard look at a plant here,” Kelleher said in an interview with the Toronto Star.
Hyundai opened a plant in Bromont, Que. in 1989 but it was only operational for four years before closing as sales crashed in North America. Hyundai then began a slow recovery that picked up steam over the last five years. The company held a 1.4% market share in 1997 but recent success has raised its stake to 7.5% this year.
[Source: Toronto Star]
'Clean Air Commitment' to offer up to $1,000 off a new Hyundai
In the absence of any real movement by the Canadian government to establish a cash-for-clunkers program like the one that is currently boosting auto sales in the U.S., Hyundai Canada has just announced its own incentive program to get older, less-environmentally responsible cars off the road and get you into a Hyundai.
Currently through the Canadian government’s Retire Your Ride program, those who scrap their car are offered “green” incentives like a public transit pass, a membership to a car sharing program or a $300 cash rebate on the purchase of a 2004 or newer vehicle. That’s hardly as enticing as the $4,500 (almost $5,000 CDN) the U.S. government has on the table to get people in to more fuel-efficient cars.
Hyundai’s Clean Air Commitment acts as a top-up to the Canadian government’s program, and offers an additional $500 to $1,000 of “Clean Air Cash” off any 1995 and older vehicle that is in running condition and has been registered and insured for the last six months.
“Hyundai is committed to clean air in Canada,” said Steve Kelleher, president and CEO, Hyundai Auto Canada Corp. “Our Clean Air Commitment is about our responsibility to deliver a harmonious balance between vehicles and the environment; it’s about clean air now and for the future. Reducing vehicle emissions has a direct impact on the air we breathe, so helping to remove older, more-polluting vehicles from the road just makes sense. It’s something we can do today to immediately impact our environment. We think that’s pretty smart.”
Currently Hyundai is committed to becoming an environmentally-responsible leader it he auto industry and has set a goal of reaching a fleet average of 35 mpg (6.7 liters per 100km) by 2015 – five years ahead of what will be required by upcoming U.S. and Canadian legislation. Hyundai also plans to bring a hybrid version of the upcoming next-generation Sonata to market using the company’s lithium polymer battery technology.
Official release after the jump: