Hyundai and Kia are quickly becoming a global leader in electric vehicles, according to their slice of the new-car market.
New figures show the jointly-owned brands now have a greater share of the global electric car market than they do for vehicles powered by petrol or diesel.
While electric cars still only represent a fraction of the total output for Hyundai and Kia (roughly 1.5 per cent of vehicles sold annually), the South Korean car giant is taking a larger slice of the sales of battery-powered models.
As reported by Business Korea, Hyundai and Kia accounted for combined 9.9 per cent share of global sales of electric vehicles. That amounts to almost one in 10 of all EVs sold (28,796 of 290,426 electric cars sold globally in the first three months of 2020, according to industry statistician MarkLines), and is up substantially on its 2.05 per cent share of the electric-car market in 2016.
By comparison, Hyundai and Kia currently represent 8.9 per cent of all petrol and diesel cars sold globally.
Despite being owned by the same parent company, Kia Australia spokesperson Kevin Hepworth told CarAdvice last September both Hyundai and Kia are run independently of each other.
“Hyundai and Kia are completely separate business units. We have different business plans,” said Mr Hepworth. “We have a completely different business plan than Hyundai. We only know what happens on our side. None of our cars come off the same line (as each other).”
As reported in November 2019, Hyundai is planning to launch 23 fully-electric models in Australia within the next five years. A further 21 models will use hybrid powertrains.
Kia has stated that it plans to sell a total of 500,000 electric vehicles globally by 2026 (excluding China, where the company is involved a joint-venture).
In February 2020 CarAdvice reported that Hyundai Motor Company had begun a relationship with Californian company Canoo to co-develop an electric 'skateboard' chassis, which would underpin all electric vehicle models in the future.