Korean automakers: Global auto market on track for recovery, Korean auto makers’ market share increases to 8%



Korean automakers sold 2,297,000 units in the global market in the first half of this year, reaching the level of 2,303,000 units sold in the first half of 2019. In particular, the global market share increased by 0.6 % compared to 7.4%. in the first semester of 2019 at 8.0 & in the first semester of this year.

According to the Korean Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA), on August 19, car sales in the world’s seven major auto markets, including the United States, China, Europe, India, Mexico, Russia and Brazil, rose 30.6% to 28.57 million units in the first half of last year, showing a “V” rebound. But compared to the 31.04 million units sold in the first half of 2019, it was down 8.0%.

By market, the Indian market posted the largest increase of 95.2% year-on-year. Next come Russia (38.2%), the United States (29.3%), China (27.5%), Europe (27.1%), Brazil (26.3%) and Mexico (18.1%).

Compared to the first half of 2019 before COVID-19, India (1.5%) and Russia (6.0%) showed a positive growth rate. The United States (1.3%) and China (1.1%) also posted a similar level before COVID-19. However, Brazil (24.6%), Europe (23.0%) and Mexico (19.6%) posted a relatively slow recovery.

The Indian market has shown the fastest recovery due to the base effect of a sharp drop in sales caused by the lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19 last year. In the American market, sales were resumed thanks to the effect of economic policy and the increase in the vaccination rate. Sales in the Chinese market have recovered to almost the same level of sales before COVID-19 with an increase in sales of new energy vehicles (NEVs) such as electric vehicles (217.4%).

However, it is analyzed that the European market has shown a relatively slow recovery due to the resurgence of COVID-19 in European countries and production delays (around 100,000 to 120,000 units) caused by the global shortage of semi- automotive conductors.

As global markets quickly recovered, the market share of Asian automakers (Korea, China and Japan) has grown from 47.8% last year to 50.6% this year. On the other hand, the combined market share of US and European companies has grown from 50.1 percent last year to 46.7 percent this year.

In the Chinese market, Chinese local brands, including electric vehicle (EV) companies, have mainly developed into domestic markets. The Korean community has recently expanded its market share mainly in the US, European and Indian markets by strengthening product lines to satisfy customers of SUVs and electrification models.

The global market share of Korean automakers in the first half of the year grew rapidly from 7.4% in 2019 to 7.6% in 2020 and 8.0% this year. By country, the United States (8.5% in 2020 – 9.7% in 2021), Europe (6.9% – 7.6%) and India (22.9% – 23.3 %) recorded an increase in their market share. In the research, the overseas factories of Hyundai Motor and Kia were classified as Korean automakers. On the other hand, GM Korea and Renault Samsung were classified as American and European respectively.

Mainly in the US market, the market share of Japanese automakers also increased slightly. However, the market share has declined in the European market and the Chinese market, which are experiencing strong growth in Eclectic Hybrid Vehicle (HEV) and Eclectic Vehicle (EV) models.

On the other hand, American automakers are suffering from a global semiconductor shortage. On the American market, the sales growth of American companies (15.5%) was lower than that of Korean (48.1%), European (42.6%) and Japanese (38.4%) companies. European companies have also developed their models of electric vehicles, but sales growth in China, the largest market for electric vehicles, was 13.7%. It is analyzed that the market share in the Chinese market has been taken by the American automaker Tesla and the Chinese local brands.

Meanwhile, large countries such as Europe, the United States and China have improved regulations on internal combustion vehicles to respond to climate change, and have also increased the internalization of supply chains, infrastructure and subsidies to ensure the future leadership of the automotive industry.

These large countries have forced the conversion to electric vehicles, such as the EU’s Fit for 55 and the Biden-Harris administration’s regulations on internal combustion vehicles. These countries have also increased their budgets to expand tax deductions, subsidies and the creation of electricity and hydrogen charging stations, as well as investments in key supply chains of materials such as batteries and semi -conductors.

China has continued to promote NEV conversion with the aim of reducing carbon emissions after 2030, and it is also improving regulations on vehicle data collection and strengthening control over the future auto industry.


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