KIA Insider

Andhra unit to help Kia drive in top models here, Auto News, ET Auto

Mumbai: Kia Motors has set up an assembly line at Anantapur, in Andhra Pradesh along with the manufacturing line to bring in top-of-the-line models to build premium image around the brand.

Apart from five locally produced models, Kia is conducting feasibility study on three to four models to be imported as a completely knocked down unit and expand the portfolio to over 6-8 cars in three years. The models like Stinger sports car, Sorento SUV, which is a Hyundai Tucson rival globally, Telluride, the top of the line SUV designed for North America, are being explored to be brought in as a CKD model to ensure that the company addresses multiple price points from ₹10 lakh to ₹50 lakh.

Alternatively, the company is also exploring the possibility of bringing in Soul or Niro EV for the Indian market.

Kia Motors has said that the plant in Anantapur is already equipped to make electric vehicles and it is open to introducing EVs in India based on the market response.

Kia Motors India spokesperson did not respond to queries on importing completely knocked down vehicles.

The aggressive product launch plans an extremely competitive pricing clearly underlines the seriousness from Korea's second biggest car maker. The completely built car imports invite over 120% in custom duty, while for completely knocked down units it is almost half.

Within a couple of months of its entry into India, Kia has already broken into top 8 car makers in the country and is already sitting on booking of over 35000 units for Seltos, which has already climbed to top five SUVs sold in India.

Followed by Seltos, Kia will be launching the Carnival MPV by Auto Expo, followed by a Sub-4 metre SUV six months later. It has set itself a target of 5% market share in the next three years. Kia has committed over a billion dollars to p[iut up the 3 lakh units capacity plant it intends to use in the coming three years. While Seltos has got off to a very good start in India, Kia will begin exports of Seltos to neighbouring countries, Africa and Latin America.