Hyundai's Having a Ball, Sonata and Tucson Driving US Sales to the Moon

According to US Hyundai CEO John Krafcik, Hyundai is looking to set an "all-time" sales record in September partially thanks to high demand for the new Sonata sedan.

Krafcik told Autonews that September "looks fantastic [for Hyundai]. The industry looks decent -- I wouldn't say great -- but I think we're going to be fine." That's because the two latest Hyundai models to arrive have been the well received Sonata and the crisp Tucson.

Due to the firm's recent product /quality blitz, sales for 2010 have risen 17% so far and should help Hyundai pass its 500,000 unit United States sales goal this year. This follows an industry-wide drop in sales after various clunker programs in which Hyundai benefited significantly, so good for them.

These sales also include the company's very conservative goals for its Lexus-fighting Equus. Regarding the Equus' target market of full-size luxury shoppers in the market for something fresh, Krafcik continued, "We recognize that's a tough segment...We're going in with a 2,000 to 3,000 units a year sales objective, which would give us a 6 to 7 percent share."

Other than the top-line Equus, the Genesis Sedan and Coupe will receive mild updates to stay up to date; on the low end, expect the Sonata and Tucson to hold down the fort until the new Accent, Elantra sedan, Veloster small coupe (see the latest spy shots here), and Azera saloon appear in the next year or so.

Expect to see more and more of these out-of-left field Hyundais in the future as the Koreans begin to take advantage of Japanese automakers' lack of direction.

By Phil Alex

Source: Autonews (sub. req.)