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South Korea Full Year 2021: Hyundai Porter best-seller, Genesis up 28% in market down -8.6%

The Hyundai Porter is the best-selling vehicle in South Korea in 2021.

Discover over 30 years of South Korean Historical Data here.

After bucking the global negative trend in 2020 with volumes up 5.8%, the South Korean new car market is down a significant -8.6% this year to 1,713,351 sales, that’s a loss of over 160,000 units. Domestic carmakers drop -10% to 1,437,605 while foreign manufacturers are stable at +0.5% to 276,146 units and 16.1% share vs. 14.7% a year ago. Hyundai (-11.8%) falls faster than its home market and sees its share thaw by more than a percentage point to 34.5%. Kia (-3.1%) resists much better and lifts from 29.5% to 31.2%, even toppling Hyundai for the first time in July. Genesis (+28.3%) continues to spectacularly gear up, going from 5.8% to 8.1% share and breaking its monthly volume record twice: in March and December. Mercedes (-0.9%) is rewarded for its stability by a jump from #7 to #4 overall with an improved 4.4% share. It distances BMW (+12.5%) also up three spots to #5. In contrast, domestic fares Renault Samsung (-36.3%), Ssangyong (-35.7%) and GM Korea (-34.6%) all freefall. Audi (+0.4%) and Volvo (+17.6%) also shine in the remainder of the Top 10, with Bentley (+70.9%) Honda (+42.5%), Rolls Royce (+31.6%) and Jeep (+19.4%) impressive further down.

In the domestic model ranking, the Hyundai Porter (-3.1%) takes advantage of the implosion of the Hyundai Grandeur (-38.8%) to secure its second ever annual win after 2016. It’s also the second time ever a Light Commercial Vehicle is the best-seller in South Korea. Below the Grandeur, the Kia Carnival (+14.1%) soars five spots to land on the third step of the podium, dislodging the Hyundai Avante (-19%). The Kia Sorento (-15%) remains in 5th place above the Hyundai Sonata (-6.4%), with the Kia Bongo (-3.5%) up two ranks to #7 and the Kia K5 (-29.6%) down four to #8. The Genesis G80 (+5.9%) breaks into the Top 10 at #9 and the Hyundai Palisade (-19.2%) is down three spots to #10. The Hyundai Tucson (+33.8%) is lifted up six ranks to #11 by the new generation and the Genesis GV70 ends its first full year in market at #14. The Hyundai Staria (#21) is the best-selling 2021 launch ahead of the Hyundai Ioniq 5 (#24), Kia EV6 (#32) and Hyundai Casper (#34). The Ioniq 5 peaked at #8 in October while the Casper reached a high of #11 in both November and December.

Looking at foreign models, the Mercedes E-Class (-22.4%) easily retains the top spot ahead of the BMW 5 Series (-14.1%) while the Audi A6 (+6.1%) is up one spot to #3 and the Mercedes S-Class is up three to #4. The Tesla Model 3 makes its first appearance in the charts at #5 ahead of the Tesla Model Y, with the BMW 3 Series (-2.1%) and Mercedes GLE in tow. The Lexus ES (+17.7%) and Mercedes GLC (-15.7%) round out the Top 10. Strong performances of the BMW X5 (+57.3%) and X3 (+42.3%) just outside the Top 10. The VW T-Roc (#37) is the most popular 2021 launch.

Previous month: South Korea November 2021: Kia Sportage takes charge in market off -15.5%

Previous year: South Korea 2020: Market up 5.8%, Genesis up to #3 brand, Hyundai Grandeur best-seller

Two years ago: South Korea 2019: Hyundai Grandeur snaps third win at last minute, market down -1.9%

Full December 2021 Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 domestic models and Top 50 foreigners below.

Full Year 2021 Top 30 All-brands, Top 60 domestic models and Top 50 foreigners vs. Full Year 2020 figures below.

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