Report: Hyundai Tops Ford as World’s Fourth Largest Automaker

No doubt you’ve heard a lot over the past several months about how Ford is bucking the global economic downturn and finding ways to succeed. It may surprise you then to learn that Hyundai (including its Kia brand) has succeeded in selling more cars in the first half of 2009 than Ford, which makes Kia the world’s fourth largest automaker.

By ousting Ford from the fourth spot, Kia now ranks below Volkswagen, with Toyota in first place and General Motors in second.

In the first half of 2009 Hyundai moved 2,153,000 units; 8,000 more units than Ford. World-wide, Ford’s sales for the first half of 2009 have plummeted 30.6 percent.

For all of last year, Hyundai sold roughly one million fewer vehicles than Ford.

Just 10 years ago the combined sales of Hyundai and Kia still only landed the automaker in 11th place. In recent years, however, Hyundai has vastly improved its image with vehicles like the Genesis and Genesis Coupe, while models like the Kia ceed (shown above as the No 3 concept), are aimed at expanding the Kia brand at the lower end of the marketplace.

[Source: Kia via RideLust]

Official release after the jump:


Kia Motors

(UK) Ltd. is pleased to announce that parent company, Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, has become the fourth largest global automotive manufacturer, according to data just published.

Based on figures from the Automotive News Data Centre, the Korean manufacturer has overtaken Ford which saw it’s sales fall by more than 30 per cent in the first half of 2009, selling 8,000 more vehicles than the US giant in the first half of 2009.

Results for all of last year saw Hyundai-Kia trail Ford by around 1,000,000-units, but by reducing the impact of the global recession by producing the right product for the right times, the group has managed to take fourth place much quicker than had been predicted.

Go back just 10 years and the newly unified company was in 11th place overall, but rapid globalization has seen state of the art factories being built in several countries including Slovakia, the United States and China. The manufacturing facilities have been geared-up to build products that are designed and engineered for local markets. The Kia cee’d is a leading example, being designed, developed and engineered in Germany and built in Slovakia.