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Hyundai, Toyota vie for No. 1 in Africa

Hyundai Motor has been closely competing with Toyota Motor to become No. 1 in automobile sales in Africa, posting about 60 percent in growth since to the beginning of the year.

The company saw its sales in Africa reach 16,011 units in October, compared with 10,051 units in January.

Hyundai has ranked second with a 12.8 percent share of the African market while Toyota captured 14.7 percent of the market.

Hyundai has surpassed Toyota in the five major countries ― Egypt, Algeria, Morocco, Angola and the Republic of South Africa.

Between January and August, Hyundai grabbed 12.9 percent of the five major markets with sales of 95,151 units while the Japanese competitor posted 12.8 percent in market share with sales of 94,159 units.

Sales in the five nations account for more than 80 percent of all automobile sales on the continent.

Many Hyundai vehicles exported to Africa are being produced at its Indian plant.

The company’s Indian unit, Hyundai Motor India, began producing vehicles in 1998 with an annual production capacity of 300,000 units.

Hyundai Motor India has recorded a year-on-year increase for the 12th consecutive year aided by the subcompact i10, which took the title of India’s bestselling model for the second consecutive year in 2010.

Further, Hyundai Motor India was also the subcontinent’s largest exporter of automobiles, having shipped more than 247,000 vehicles to 120 countries.

Last year, Hyundai Motor India exceeded 1 million vehicles in exports.

Its Indian unit has produced the Santro (a localized model of “Atoz”), i10, i20 and other compact cars which are being exported to 110 countries including Africa, Europe and South America.

Hyundai’s Indian subsidiary started exports in 1999 and reached a cumulative 1 million in 2004, with numbers continuing to rise in the following years.

By Kim Yon-se (