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South Korea January 2023: New Hyundai Grandeur tops the charts

The Hyundai Grandeur is #1 at home in January.

The South Korean new light vehicle market lodges a 6th consecutive year-on-year gain in January at +5.5% to 117,390 sales. This includes 101,168 local models (+7.7%) and 16,222 foreigners (-6.6%). Hyundai (+23.1%) largely outraces its home market to land a strong 37.4% share vs. 33.1% over the Full Year 2022. Kia (+4.4%) is more shy in 2nd place and 32.9% share. Genesis (-21%) goes against the positive trend but stays in third above Ssangyong (+47.4%), the standout performer in the Top 5. Note the Top 4 brands are all Korean for the third time in the past five months. BMW (+9.7%) takes advantage of a very slow month by Mercedes (-14.8%) to grab the #1 foreigner position at #5. Audi (+93.4%) almost doubles its sales year-on-year to #7, distancing Renault Korea (-52.7%) and GM Korea (-24%) both freefalling. Volvo (+0.3%) has a stable month to close the Top 10.

After a couple of months of transition between the old and new generation, the Hyundai Grandeur (+405.6%) is up 5-fold to score its first win since last June. The new model has started its career well. As a reminder the Grandeur was #1 annually in South Korea from 2017 to 2020. The Kia Carnival (+67.8%) is up three spots on December to land in 2nd place above last year’s leader the Hyundai Porter (+21.1%) also in great shape year-on-year. The Hyundai Avante (+12.2%) and Kia Sportage (+23.3%) also beat the market below. The new Ssangyong Torres roars up 14 ranks on last month to #6, its 2nd highest ranking below the #4 it hit last September. The Torres accounts for a whopping 76% of all Ssangyong sales this month. All remaining Top 10 models are down bar the Hyundai Tucson (+0.5%).

The BMW 5 Series (+6.4%) easily takes control of the foreigners ranking, taking advantage of a big slumps by the high selling Mercedes models. In fact BMW places five models in the foreigner Top 8, adding the X3 (+107.1%), X4 (+127.6%), 3 Series (-6.4%) and X5 (-4.8%). The Audi A6 (+254.5%) surges to 2nd place vs. #4 over the Full Year 2022 with the Mercedes E-Class (-49.8%) and S Class (-26.9%) in tow. The Lexus ES (+17%) and Porsche Cayenne (+87.6%) round out the Top 10.

Previous post: South Korea 2022: Kia threatens Hyundai for #1, Hyundai Porter and Kia Sorento on top

One year ago: South Korea January 2022: G80 first Genesis to rank #1, Kia outsells Hyundai for 2nd time

Full January 2023 Top 30 all brands, Top 50 all local models and Top 50 foreign models below.

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