Kia Motors overseas sales rise 23.4% in May

- May Europe sales post 52.9% growth
- Carnival (Sedona) MPV best-selling model overseas in May
- Sportage SUV also provides sales boost

(SEOUL) May 2, 2005 -- Kia Motors Corporation today announced that its overseas retail sales of passenger cars and light trucks in May 2005 recorded 70,787 units, representing a 23.4% year-on-year increase. Meanwhile, exports during this period recorded 72,307 units, for a 24.5% rise over the same period of last year.

By region, European sales in May (26,489 units) rose by 52.9% year-on-year, while the general market (15,595 units) and North America (28,703 units) experienced sales growth of 29.0% and 2.6%, respectively. In terms of May exports, 22,941 units were shipped to North America for a 13% year-on-year rise, 30,690 units were shipped to Europe for a 33% increase and 18,676 units were shipped to the general market for a 27% gain.

This strong May performance in overseas markets can be attributed to continued robust sales of the A-segment Picanto, C-segment Cerato (also known as the ‘Spectra’ in some markets) and the Carnival MPV (also known as the ‘Sedona’), which was the leading seller in foreign markets in the month of May, as well as the added boost provided by the popularity of the recently introduced new Sportage SUV. Also, the soon-to-be-launched all-new B-segment Rio, for which production has commenced, is expected to further accelerate this positive sales momentum.

For the first five months of 2005, Kia has seen its overseas retail sales and exports leap by 31.8% and 30.9%, respectively. Over this period, Kia sold a total of 324,192 vehicles while exporting 372,616 units.

“Kia’s continued impressive sales and export growth in overseas markets has us well positioned to achieve our 2005 target of reaching one million exports and US$10 billion in export revenue." said Mr. Yong-Hwan Kim, Senior Executive Vice President and COO of Kia Motors.

“With the all-new B-segment Rio set to arrive in showrooms this summer and the completely redesigned long-body version of the Carnival (Sedona) MPV expected to go on sale in the fall, we look forward to posting yet another record year.” he added.

Editor’s note: Figures do not include KD (knock down) exports, which are assembled at overseas plants.

Kia Motors Corporation ( -- the fastest growing automaker in the world -- was founded in 1944 and is Korea’s oldest manufacturer of motor vehicles. As part of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, Kia aims to become one of the world’s premier automotive brands. Kia’s 16 manufacturing and assembly operations in 12 countries produce more than 1.1 million vehicles a year that are sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering 155 countries. Kia today has over 32,000 employees and annual revenues of $14 billion. It is the major sponsor of the Australian Tennis Open and an official worldwide sponsor of the Davis Cup. Kia Motors Corporation’s brand slogan -- “The Power to Surprise” -- represents the company’s global commitment to surpassing customer expectations through continuous automotive innovation.