Hyundai’s sister brand Kia wasn’t even inside the Top 10 a decade ago, now it is just one spot away from the podium in 2020.
- shares

Korean car maker Kia is on track to finish fourth outright in 2020 – behind market leader Toyota, long-standing number two Mazda and third-placed Hyundai.

A decade ago, Kia wasn’t even inside the Top 10. It has been the fastest growing car company in Australia over the past 10 years.

Although Kia sales so far this year are down by 12 per cent, the decline is not as sharp as those of its nearest rivals.

Kia currently ranks sixth on the charts for the first nine months of this year, but it is less than 250 sales away from overtaking Ford and less than 1300 sales away from passing Mitsubishi.

Kia has historically been a distant relative of Hyundai, but five years ago the brand was tasked with closing the gap to its parent company in Australia.

Kia sales have increased year-on-year since 2015, almost doubling its annual tally in that time. Conversely, Hyundai sales have been in steady decline over the same period.

Above: the Kia Sorento

A decade ago Kia sold fewer than 25,000 cars in a calendar year and languished in 13th place behind Suzuki.

In 2010, the top four automotive brands in Australia were Toyota, Mazda, Holden and Ford.

In 2020, the top four automotive brands are shaping up to be Toyota, Mazda, Hyundai and Kia.

Mitsubishi and Ford – which currently rank fourth and fifth year-to-date – have reportedly been hit with delays n key models after a pause in production due to the coronavirus crisis. However, there is a chance they could make a recovery in the final three months of 2020.

On current projections, though, Kia could finish in fourth place for the first time ever, after ranking sixth in 2019, seventh in 2018, ninth in 2017, after cracking into the Top 10 in 2016.

Kia’s sister brand Hyundai has ranked in third place behind Toyota and Mazda since 2016 and is on track to finish in third place for the fifth year in a row.

The results mark a changing of the guard as Holden prepares to shut its doors in Australia by the end of this year.

After decades of dominance by Holden and Ford from the 1950s to the early 2000s, Japanese and Korean companies now represent the majority of the Top 10 brands.

Kia was established in Australia in June 1992 with a light truck Ceres and then with Mentor and Sportage passenger cars in December 1996. Hyundai cars have been sold in Australia since 1986.

Kia sales
2020 September YTD: 40,696
2019: 61,503
2018: 58,515
2017: 54,737
2016: 42,668
2015: 33,736
2014: 28,005
2013: 29,778
2012: 30,758
2011: 25,128
2010: 23,848

Hyundai sales
2020 September YTD: 45,219
2019: 86,104
2018: 94,187
2017: 97,013
2016: 101,555
2015: 102,004
2014: 100,011
2013: 97,006
2012: 91,536
2011: 87,008
2010: 80,038

Top 10 car brands in September 2020

RankBrandVolume September 2020Change year-on-year
1Toyota12,936down 14.7 per cent
2Mazda7000down 14.3 per cent
3Hyundai5273down 27.2 per cent
4Kia5092down 0.7 per cent
5Ford4816up 0.7 per cent
6Mitsubishi4179down 53.5 per cent
7Volkswagen3493down 8.5 per cent
8Nissan2588down 44.4 per cent
9Mercedes-Benz2395down 10.7 per cent
10Subaru2121down 39.4 per cent

Source: Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries.

Top 25 brands for September 2020

Top 25 models for September 2020