Hyundai Motor Group, the world's fifth-largest automotive conglomerate, said Thursday that its U.S. sales reached record high levels for August by gaining 5.5 percent on-year to 124,670 units, fueled by demand for popular models.
Hyundai Motor America and Kia Motors America, the distribution and marketing arms of the group's flagship companies, said sales were up 5.9 percent and 5 percent, respectively, in the one-month period compared with a year earlier.
HMA said it sold 70,003 cars last month, up from 66,101 tallied in August 2013, and KMA's numbers rose to 54,667 from 52,025.
The growth comes as global sales for Hyundai and Kia dipped for the whole of last month. Hyundai, South Korea's No. 1 carmaker, reported selling 357,698 vehicles, a loss of 5.9 percent from the year before. Kia sales reached 217,438 units, a dip of 3 percent.
The combined U.S. sales are equivalent to 21.6 percent of the 575,136 cars sold by the two South Korean automakers last month.
HMA said the tally for August marks the second time that monthly sales surpassed 70,000 since the South Korean carmaker started selling vehicles in the U.S. in 1986.
"Sales continued to gain momentum as the month progressed, and we finished the Labor Day holiday weekend strong," HMA said in a statement. It added the all-new Sonata, Genesis and crossovers played a big part in pushing up numbers last month.
Hyundai's Santa Fe and Tucson CUV sales increases of 15 and 35 percent, respectively, while gains for the Sonata reached 25 percent and for the Genesis 15 percent.
Hyundai's smaller sibling, Kia, said sales of cars such as the Soul, Optima and Sportage led the growth.
The Soul boxy compact sales hit an impressive 15,069, up from 10,017 a year earlier.
It said sales of its popular Optima midsize sedan hit 15,337, making it the best-selling Kia in America last month.
The company said the upcoming arrival of the Sedona minivan will continue to improve sales.
For the first eight months of the year, the two carmakers sold 905,837 cars, up 3.8 percent from 871,496 units sold a year earlier.
Hyundai's numbers reached 501,448 from 493,116, while Kia said it sold 404,389 units vis-a-vis 378,380 vehicles a year earlier. (Yonhap)