Hyundai, Kia are enjoying the new popularity of LPG Porter, Bongo trucks

Hyundai, Kia are enjoying the new popularity of LPG Porter, Bongo trucks


Kia’s LPG Bongo Turbo 1 ton truck

These days, many economists are trumpeting weak business conditions in the coming months. But the recession is not a bad thing for Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Corp., which are enjoying a resurgence of their small trucks.

According to industry sources on Monday, Hyundai Transys Co, a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Group that supplies auto parts such as transmissions and axles, in mid-February began additional work beyond the usual restrictions.

In Korea, workers in mainstream businesses are prohibited from working more than 52 hours a week. However, with the consent of the employee and approval from the ministry of labor, companies may ask them to work 12 additional hours per week for up to three months in the event of an exceptional case such as a sudden increase in product demand or short-term requests of R&D.

A Hyundai Transys official said workers at units that produce automatic transmissions for 1-ton gasoline-powered trucks made by Hyundai Motor and Kia, two automakers of South Korea’s largest automaker, Hyundai Motor Group.

Hyundai Porter mini truck
Hyundai Porter mini truck

The workers are currently working up to 64 hours a week – the most overtime since the global auto parts shortage caused by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic two years ago.

LAZY SALES

“With the weak sales of electric vehicles, the demand for combustion engine vehicles is increasing again. Therefore, we are also dealing with transportation supply. Demand is expected to increase rapidly in the latter half of this year due to the economic slowdown,” he said. . Hyundai Transys official.

From February 1, new LPG Hyundai Porter buyers must wait four months to receive their ordered vehicles. Up to three months for the delivery of the new LPG Kia Bongo, according to Hyundai Motor Group.

“Last month, half of new car purchase requests were for Porters. Some foreigners, knowing they can’t buy a new car right away, are turning to the used car market to buy a small truck,” said a Hyundai Motor dealer in Seoul.

Kia Bongo mini truck
Kia Bongo mini truck

According to Seoul-based automotive data provider CarIsYou, the Hyundai Porter and Kia Bongo sold 11,070 units and 6,393 units, respectively, in the used car market in Korea last month.

With those figures, the two took first and second place respectively, followed by the Kia Morning compact sedan, which sold 3,950 units.

THE END OF THE ERA OF THE DIESEL CAR

Last November, Hyundai and Kia stopped making small diesel trucks and replaced them with LPG vehicles in line with the industry’s shift towards environmentally friendly vehicles.

Automakers instead started building the same models with the 2.5 liter LPG T-LPDi turbo engine or making them electric.

Diesel cars are coming out of the car market with enhanced environmental regulations
Diesel cars are coming out of the car market with enhanced environmental regulations

The two images have been widely used by delivery service operators in Korea for two decades. The production of 1 ton of the Kia Bongo automatic diesel model – one of the most popular such cars – has already stopped on July 14.

Diesel cars are coming out of the car market with enhanced environmental regulations.

Under the government’s toughened environmental regulations, delivery service providers were banned from registering new diesel vehicles from January.

The government is offering up to 9 million shillings ($6,757) as a subsidy to those who switch LPG vehicles from diesel vehicles.

The halt in production of diesel trucks also coincides with stricter Euro 7 emission rules, Hyundai Motor Group said.

Write to Nan-Sae Bin at binthere@hankyung.com
In-Soo Nam edited this article.