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Honda joins Korea’s growing eco-car marketBy 줄리 잭슨 (Julie Jackson)
Published : Jan. 18, 2017 - 15:29
The major Japanese automaker released its popular Accord series for the first time in Korea on Wednesday, looking to increase its presence in the competitive local market with its latest eco-friendly sedan.
“Last year Honda Korea sold 6,636 vehicles in the Korean market,” said Jung Woo-young, CEO of Honda Korea, at a press conference held at the Grand Hyatt hotel in Seoul on Wednesday morning. “However, this year, with our new release, our goal is to push that number to 9,000.”
Takashi Sekiguchi, managing officer at Honda Motor, said, “China, India and Korea are very big markets for us. These markets are the most competitive and fiercest markets.”
The Accord series has been manufactured by Honda since 1976 and has been one of the best-selling cars in the United States since 1989. The new Hybrid Accord features a three-mode driving system: electric vehicle, hybrid and engine also with a ramped-up 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine.
Honda’s new release also has a kilometers per liter rating of 19.5 city and 18.9 highway, beating out most midsize sedans on the market today.
The Accord will be going up against a booming eco-friendly car market, led by Hyundai Motor Company’s Kia Niro and Hyundai’s Grandeur, Sonata and Ionic hybrid models.
Last year, the country saw a significant boom in its eco-friendly car market of fuel-conscious consumers. Sales of hybrid cars more than doubled last June, selling 6,215 units of Korean-made hybrid cars -- up 140 percent from the previous month.
Kia Motors’ Niro accounted for 52 percent of the total hybrid sales last June, while Hyundai’s Grandeur came in second with 1,055 units sold.
The first half of 2016 also saw the Korean market it green car sales surpassing Germany, the largest producer of green vehicles in Europe. According to the data from the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association, Korea-based car manufacturers sold a combined total of 26,161 eco-friendly vehicles. The figure represents a 64 percent spike compared to the same period in 2015.
“We hope that more customers will be able to experience overwhelming satisfaction for the Honda Accord Hybrid, which has represented itself to be at the highest level of its class without compromising on fuel efficiency, driving performance and environmentally friendly features,” says Jung.
The new Accord is listed at 43.2 million won ($37,000) with taxes included.
By Julie Jackson (email@example.com)
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