By Seonjin Cha/ Bloomberg
Seoul: Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea’s largest automaker, plans to raise the capacity of its plant in Turkey, as it aims to boost sales in Europe.
The plant will build 100,000 Verna subcompacts, Starex minivans and Matrix hatchbacks a year by 2009, the Seoul-based carmaker said. The factory in Izmit, 120 kilometers east of the capital Istanbul, had an annual capacity of 60,000 units at the end of last year.
Hyundai Motor plans to expand its plant in Turkey and to open another in the Czech Republic. The carmaker and its Kia Motors Corp. affiliate are aiming for a combined 5.3% share of European car sales by the end of the decade.
Hyundai Motor last year sold 87,069 units from the Turkey plant, in which it holds 70% stake. Turkey’s Kibar Group owns the remainder.
The company began construction of $1.5 billion plant in the Czech Republic on 25 April. The carmaker also has factories in China, India and the U.S.