According to the Korea Automobile & Mobility Association (KAMA), Hyundai Motor Co. and its subsidiary Kia Corp. sold a combined 46,826 electric vehicle (EV) models in the United States between January and June of this year, a 5.9% increase from the 44,233 units sold in the same period of the previous year.
EVs include battery electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), and hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEVs).
However, the market share of the two South Korean automakers in the U.S. EV market dropped to 7% in the first half of the year from 10.5% in the same period of the previous year.
Overall EV sales in the U.S. during the first half of the year, including BEVs, PHEVs, and FCEVs, amounted to 655,699 units, a 25% increase from the 423,656 units sold during the same period of the previous year, according to data from Ward’s Auto Intelligence.
Two all-electric Korean models — Hyundai’s Ioniq 5 and Kia’s EV6 — were among the ten most popular EV models in the U.S. in the first six months of the year. The other eight models were Tesla Inc.’s Model Y, Model 3 and Model X, General Motors Co.’s Bolt and Bolt EUV, Volkswagen Group’s ID.4 SUV, and Ford Motor Co.’s Mustang Mach E SUV and F Series light pickup truck.
From January to June, Hyundai and Kia’s overall vehicle sales, including EVs, rose 17% year-on-year to 820,180 autos from 702,875 a year earlier.
The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), signed into law by U.S. President Joe Biden in August, has posed a challenge for Hyundai Motor Group’s EV sales in the U.S., as the law gives up to US$7,500 in tax credits to buyers of EVs assembled only in North America. Hyundai Motor and Kia make most of their EVs at domestic plants for export to the U.S.
In response to the IRA, the Korean automotive group is constructing a dedicated EV and battery plant in Georgia, with production slated to begin in the first half of 2025. Early this year, Hyundai Motor began producing the all-electric GV70 SUVs under its independent Genesis brand at its Alabama plant.
Hyundai and Kia together form the world’s third-largest carmaker by sales after Toyota Motor Corp. and Volkswagen Group.