Hyundai considers plan to build a second assembly plant in the U.S.

Article by Christian Andrei, on January 19, 2011

Hyundai is considering a second assembly plant in the United States as growth has been limited due to a lack of production capacity. Executives see continued strong demand for the Sonata and redesigned Elantra that went on sale in December 2010. Both are built at Hyundai's assembly plant in Montgomery, Ala.

Dave Zuchowski, Hyundai's U.S. sales boss said the company's "biggest problem" for next year is that it's not sure it going to have the products to meet demand.

John Krafcik, Hyundai Motor America CEO, said there are no concrete plans for a second assembly plant, but that putting up another plant is in the company's future. In the U.S., Hyundai sold about 540,000 vehicles in 2010, up 24 percent from 2009.

The total included almost 200,000 Sonatas. Hyundai's U.S. market share rose from 4.2 percent in 2009 to 4.6 percent in 2010.

Zuchowski sees a sales increase in 2011, but with its current production capacity, it will mean that the company is short of 600,000 units.

He said the "wild market share increases" that the company had over the last two years are going to be difficult to duplicate, “just because of global capacity.” [via autonews - sub. required]

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