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Audi, Volvo vie for No. 3 importer in Korea

C40 Recharge (Volvo Car Korea)
C40 Recharge (Volvo Car Korea)
Volvo is close to catching up to German automaker Audi, which kept its title as the third top selling foreign car brand in South Korea, data showed Monday.

According to Korea Automobile Importers & Distributors Association, Volvo Korea sold a total of 1,332 units in April overtaking Audi Korea which sold 1,051 units the same month.

Compared to sales in March, Volvo Korea saw a 1.8 percent on-month sales increase in April while Audi Korea’s sales dropped by 9 percent.

In April, Volvo Korea was responsible for 5.77 percent of imported car sales while Audi Korea was responsible for 4.56 percent.

In the first four months of this year, Audi Korea sold an accumulated 4,702 units, only 10 units more than Volvo Korea which has sold 4,692 units.

Volvo Korea has continuously shown a two-digit growth in annual sales for 10 consecutive years.

Last year, the brand sold 15,053 units, a 17.6 percent surge on-year.

It recorded 749.7 billion won ($583.83 million) in sales last year, a 20 percent increase on-year.

Its operating profit surged 221 percent on-year to 18.8 billion won last year.

Volvo’s effort to launch new and diverse plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles were reflected in the numbers.

In February, Volvo Korea launched its first all-electric SUV Coupe, the C40 Recharge, and all 1,500 units allotted for sales in South Korea this year sold out within five days since its launch.

Volvo Korea also launched long-range models of its all-electric vehicles XC90, S90, and XC60 Recharge Hybrid.

Volvo Korea plans to foster growth through electrification under its global strategy of expanding plug-in hybrid or EV sales to 50 percent of the total by 2025. It plans to be all-electric by 2030.

Bestselling imported car brand Mercedes-Benz Korea has retained its place on the throne with 25,964 units sold from January to April this year, accounting for 30.62 percent of imported car sales in South Korea.

BMW Korea follows closely behind Mercedes-Benz with 24,701 units sold during the same period, taking 29.13 percent of all imported car sales.

By Hong Yoo (yoohong@heraldcorp.com)
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