Hyundai is planning to launch 22 new models in Europe in the next four years until 2017 as part of its bid to raise its growth rate to double digits. Mark Hall, head of marketing at Hyundai Motor Europe (HME), remarked that new model rollout plan, dubbed as 'Product Momentum 2017' is expected to help the South Korean carmaker sustain its growth and achieve a 5 percent market share in Europe.
HME initially targeted to achieve a 5-percent European market share in 2016 at the earliest, but it recently scaled back its expectations and set the target year to 2020, due to a worse than expected drop in the market.
Hyundai posted an average growth of nearly 10 percent in Europe in 2011 and 2012, allowing it to hike its market share to 3.4 percent last year from 2.6 percent in 2010. The carmaker, however, saw its sales drop by 3.6 percent in the first half of 2013, with European market share of 3.5 percent.
According to executives at Hyundai, most of the 22 new models will be replacements like the next generation i10 that was unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show this week. A source at the carmaker told Reuters that the new models would also include new products like a subcompact sports utility vehicle that could be rolled out as early as 2016.
What is important for Hyundai now is how to entice customers with new offerings, since buyers may soon leave the carmaker due to some reasons.
For instance, Hyundai was able to attract many price-sensitive customers in 2009 when a number of European governments subsidized the purchase of new cars through scrappage schemes. HME Chief Operating Officer Allan Rushforth remarked that their challenge now is how to keep owners of its older models, adding that loyalty is a key element of a plan to develop Hyundai in Europe. [source: Reuters]