South Korea’s second-largest automaker, Kia Motors Corp., aims to become Europe's 10th-largest mainstream brand by 2013. To reach that goal, Kia must surpass its parent, Hyundai, as well as Volkswagen AG's Skoda brand and Renault S.A.'s Dacia. Kia must sell about 450,000 units from 262,627 in 2010, an approximate 71 percent rise in volume over the next two years.
According to ACEA, the European automakers’ association, Hyundai sold 358,284 units in Europe in 2010, up 4.7 percent.
In 2010, Kia ranked 16th in overall European sales with a market share of 1.9 percent, and 13th among mainstream brands, a category that excludes BMW brand, Daimler AG's Mercedes and VW’s Audi unit.
In an interview with Automotive News Europe early in February 2011, Paul Philpott, Kia Motors Europe’s COO said that Kia has the product, the ambition and the dealer confidence to reach its goal.
The 44-year-old Philpott joined Kia in 2007 after 11 years at Ford Motor Co. and nine at Toyota Motor Corp. He expects Kia sales to rise almost 15 percent in 2011 to 300,000 units in an overall European market expected to be “flat at best.” [via autonews - sub. required]