SEOUL, April 11 (Korea Bizwire) – Auto sales in South Korea rose to the highest in 14 years in the first quarter of the year, aided by solid demand for new models, industry data showed Tuesday.
Data from the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA) showed that the country’s five automakers and two commercial vehicle manufacturers sold a total of 374,441 units in the country during the January-March period, the highest since the first quarter of 2003 when the comparable figure was 375,387.
Renault Samsung Co. posted the highest growth in its domestic sales with a 56.4 percent on-year rise, followed by SsangYong Motor Corp. with 7.6 percent and Hyundai Motor Co.’s 0.7 percent growth, the data showed.
Hyundai Motor’s Grandeur sedan posted stellar performance with its sales rising to 34,857 units in the first quarter of the year from 13,467 units a year earlier.
Renault Samsung’s midsize sedan, the SM6, also saw its sales spike to 12,277 units from 7,088 units over the cited period, the data showed.
In contrast, the automakers’ exports dipped 4 percent on-year to reach 627,225 units, the lowest since the first quarter of 2010, when the comparable figure was 587,604.
The country’s auto output edged down 2.8 percent on-year to 1.04 million units in the first quarter, the latest findings showed.