Car sales by Hyundai Motor Co. backtracked in Europe last year amid weak overall market conditions, while its smaller sibling Kia Motors Corp. managed to increase its presence on the continent, industry data showed Thursday.
According to the data by the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association, Hyundai sold around 408,000 units in 2013, down 2.2 percent from the previous year. Kia, on the other hand, posted sales topping 329,000 vehicles, up 0.4 percent on-year.
The changes caused Hyundai's market share in the 27-country European Union to dip one percentage point to 3.4 percent while that of Kia rose a percentage point to 2.8 percent in the cited period.
Because new car sales for the overall market decreased 1.7 percent to 11.85 million, combined market share of the two South Korean carmakers reached 6.2 percent, up from 6.1 percent tallied for 2012.
Hyundai and Kia are flagship companies of Hyundai Motor Group, the world's fifth-largest automotive conglomerate.
Combined global sales of the two companies last year topped 7.56 million vehicles, which exceeded their target of 7.41 million for the entire year. For 2014, the carmakers want to sell 7.86 million cars worldwide.
The ACEA, meanwhile, said Volkswagen AG was the bestselling automaker in Europe, accounting for a quarter of all cars sold.
It said that while overall cars sales contracted for the whole year, sales from September onwards increased, with on-year gains reaching 13.3 percent in December.
It said this may be an indication that sales will continue to expand in the new year. (Yonhap News)