While its i30 range is selling up big in Australia, Korean importer Hyundai is facing problems with the logical expansion of its range into the smaller i20 and i10 vehicles.
The trouble is the complicated issue of building the cars in India using parts mostly made in Korea and then shipping the vehicles to Australia and finding an economical process to handle all that.
At the announcement last week of the very good four-star ANCAP ratings for the Hyundai iLoad and iMax vans the Hyundai Motor Company Australia’s director of sales and marketing, Kevin McCann, told CarAdvice that the launch plans for the i20 and i10 had been put back until at least early next year.
He also confirmed that Hyundai would continue to sell its all-conquering Getz, light hatch, when the i10 and i20 came onto the market, as a bargain basement offering.
Mr McCann said original plans to launch the i20 and i10 in the later part of this year were virtually dead.
He told CarAdvice that as both cars were built in the Indian factory from primarily Korean made parts and the cars then had to be shipped to Australia, it had proved very complex to determine pricing given necessity to work with three different currencies.
An additional problem was the lack of a direct roll-on-roll-off shipping service from India to Australia, which meant HMCA was currently considering shipping the cars back to Korea and then on to Australia.
Two other cars that come from India, the Suzuki Alto and the Mahindra Pik Up are shipped through either Singapore or Hong Kong for the same reason.
He said HMCA would have to consider how to handle the shipping costs involved and whether it would be possible to change to direct shipping at some time in the future.
He admitted that pricing was extremely sensitive in the Sub-light and Light Car classes in Australia and the company needed to be sure it had the issue resolved before it launched either the i10 or the i20 in Australia.