The Korea Herald


Hyundai surpasses 1 million EV sales

S. Korean automaker to release 4 new EVs this year

By Kan Hyeong-woo

Published : Jan. 24, 2023 - 14:00

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Kia EV6 (Hyundai Motor Group) Kia EV6 (Hyundai Motor Group)

Global cumulative sales of Hyundai Motor Group’s electric vehicles have surpassed the 1 million milestone, according to the South Korean automaker Tuesday.

The automaker achieved the milestone 11 years after it began selling EVs in 2011. Hyundai Motor and its premium brand Genesis have sold 601,448 EVs while Kia has sold 420,836 EVs.

The carmaker sold 236 units of its first EV, the BlueOn, in 2011. EV sales figures began to show meaningful growth when Kia released Soul EV, a compact sport utility vehicle, to the market in late 2014. Soul EVs logged 2,437 in sales that year alone, exceeding 1,000 annual EV sales for the first time in the automaker’s history.

The upward trend continued as the company sold 11,063 Kia Soul EVs in 2015. With Hyundai Motor introducing Ioniq Electric, its first EV since BlueOn, in 2016, the automaker began to pick up its pace in the EV race. Hyundai Motor Group’s total EV sales more than doubled for two consecutive years -- 2017 and 2018.

Released as the next generation small SUVs in 2018, Hyundai Motor’s Kona Electric and Kia’s Niro EV drew warm reception in the European and US markets. It took just over two years for Kona to achieve the 100,000 global sales milestone.

The automaker launched the Hyundai Ioniq 5, Kia EV6 and Genesis GV60 -- the first EVs equipped with the company’s self-developed EV platform named Electric Global Modular Platform, or E-GMP -- in 2021.

According to Hyundai Motor Group, Kona Electric was the most-sold EV model with 256,907 units sold, followed by Niro EV at 200,302, Ioniq 5 at 165,637 and EV6 at 112,893. Hyundai Motor Group’s EV models on the market climbed to 15 as of last year.

Ioniq 5 and EV6 have garnered a number of accolades since their launch in 2021, including Ioniq 5 being honored with the World Car of the Year at the 2022 World Car Awards and EV6 winning the 2022 Car of the Year in the European Car of the Year Awards.

Hyundai Motor Group Executive Chair Chung Euisun emphasized the importance of becoming a first mover in the EV industry in a New Year’s town hall meeting earlier this month. The automaker plans to release at least four new EVs -- the all-new Kona Electric, a high-performance Ioniq 5 N, an upgraded Ray EV and EV9, the group’s first large electric SUV -- this year.