The world's clean energy vehicle market, mainly dominated by electric vehicles (EVs), is growing at a whopping speed of an average annual growth rate of about 55 percent to reach 10.2 million units sold in 2022, according to global market research firm Counterpoint Research. China is the largest market with about 59 percent of EVs sold in the country with about 1.4 billion people.
The South Korean carmaker recently unveiled the concept car for EV5, a compact electric sport utility vehicle (SUV), and EV9, a full-size electric SUV scheduled for release in 2023. The upcoming EVs are part of Kia's long-term plan released in 2020 that targets the business transition of the company's current business model which is more focused on fossil fuel-based combustion engine cars to a model focusing on clean energy vehicles including EVs and fuel cell vehicles.
During the "2023 CEO Investor Day," held near central Seoul on April 5, Kia revealed a plan to sell an annual total of 4.3 million units of vehicles, including 2.3 million units of clean energy vehicles, by 2030. "To become the 'sustainable mobility solution company;' which is our future vision, we will establish a customer-centered value creation business model operation system," Kia CEO Song Ho-sung told shareholders and investors.
This year, Kia has set its sales goal of 3.2 million units. The company's 2030 goal is 34.4 percent larger than this year's targeted sales level. Also, Kia plans to increase the ratio of clean energy vehicle sales to up to 55 percent of the total. The company saw hope in sales of EV6, a middle-size SUV released in 2021, in foreign markets including the North American Market. According to Kia America, sales of full EVs in North America have tripled on-year with 20,498 EV6 and 8,209 Niro EV, a compact electric SUV model.
Kia said that the company plans to release a total of 15 EV models by 2027 and beef up the features of its cars by offering customers various connected and autonomous driving services. By 2026, drivers will no longer be required to keep their hands on the driving wheel or maintain their eyesight on the road ahead as Kia's self-driving system would take care of the operation of the cars.
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