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South Korea 1998: Daewoo Matiz takes pole position

Daewoo Matiz

The financial crisis hit the South Korean car market with a vengeance: going from 1,512,935 units in 1997 to 779,905 in 1998, a drop of 48%! Small cars are more popular this year with the Daewoo Matiz, just launched, taking the lead with 88,951 sales and 11.4% share and the Hyundai Atos at #2 and 51,931 units or 6.7%. 1998 would end up being the only year between 1990 and 2020 that a Hyundai wasn’t #1 at home…

Hyundai Atos

The Samsung SM5 shines in third position with 41,593 sales and 5.3% ahead of the Hyundai Avante (aka Elantra) at 39,767 and the Hyundai EF Sonata at 36,130 – note the previous generation Sonata also sells 26,964 units at #8. Notice also the Kia Carnival at #6, the Daewoo Leganza at #7, the SsangYong Korando at #17 and the Asia Rocsta at #39.

Full Year 1998 Top 40 Ranking Table below.

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