SEOUL, Jan. 12 (Korea Bizwire) — Sales of eco-friendly SUVs, including ones powered by hydrogen, jumped last year as fuel and environment-conscious customers increasingly opted for such cars, industry data showed Sunday.
According to the Korea Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (KAMA), some 48,700 eco-friendly SUVs were sold here last month, accounting for 8.5 percent of the total shipments of SUVs in the country, marking all-time highs in both volume and the market share.
In 2014, the market share for eco-friendly SUVs reached a meager 0.1 percent but began to spike in 2016 on the back of a diversified lineup.
Kia Motors Corp.’s Niro hybrid ranked first with some 20,240 units sold last year, followed by Hyundai Motor Co.’s Kona Electric with 13,500 units, Kia’s Niro EV with 6,000 and Hyundai’s Nexo with some 4,000 units, according to the data.
Among carmakers, Kia Motors led the pack with some 27,800 eco-friendly SUVs sold last year.
Industry sources said demand for eco-friendly SUVs is set to further rise as automakers are ready to introduce more revamped versions and the government is pushing to further expand the presence of electric vehicles and other eco-friendly autos here.