Vince Courtenay


Vince covers South Korea and other markets in the Asia/Pacific region.

Hyundai Shows Off New Fuel-Cell Model
The new model will replace the ix35 Fuel Cell vehicle and is part of an aggressive electrification plan to be executed over the next several years.
Automakers Threaten to Quit Korea Over Pay Lawsuit 1
“If the prospects of increased personnel costs from (paying) standard wages become a reality, we have no choice but to contemplate moving manufacturing bases overseas,” the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Assn. says.
Hyundai Union Workers in Korea Plan Partial Strikes
The Hyundai Branch of the Korea Metal Workers Union says members will strike for two hours on both the day and afternoon shifts Aug. 10 and Aug. 14. The union has staged partial strikes in each of the past three years.
Hyundai Formally Establishes Genesis Luxury Division
In announcing formation of the new Genesis Div., Hyundai Motor Group says the move was made to enhance response to luxury-car market trends and better meet consumer expectations.
Ssangyong First Korean Automaker to Wrap Up Wage Deal
The labor pact comes as Ssangyong reports red ink for the year’s first half, despite strong domestic sales.
Shrinking Global Sales Hit Kia’s Bottom Line
Kia’s retail vehicle sales were off significantly in China, the U.S. and Korea, dragging down total global volume for the first six months 7.6%.
Contentious Labor Talks Complicate Hyundai’s Plight
Many analysts think a strike is probable, given the union’s seemingly inflexible non-wage demands. They also believe Hyundai is sincere when it says the union’s wage demands are excessive and cannot be met.
Korea Dieselgate Case May Be Sputtering to End
Legal analysts believe prosecutors’ silence over former Audi VW Korea CEO Johannes Thammer’s departure from Korea amounts to tacit downgrading of a legal proceeding that had lost its steam and public appeal.
Hyundai Upbeat About New China Plant Despite Boycott
Hyundai wanted to launch the soon-to-open Chongqing plant three years ago. But the automaker put it on the back burner and instead built its fourth Chinese plant in Changzhou to meet government demands.
Kia Workers Latest to Authorize Strike in Korean Wage Talks
Demands for higher wages come at a time of shrinking domestic sales for Korean automakers.
Korea’s Kia Launches Stonic CUV in Home Market
Some analysts, noting Hyundai owns a 34% stake in Kia and both are controlled by Hyundai Motor Group’s senior management team, believe Kia is keeping the Stonic out of the U.S. market so as not to hamper the Kona, which launches there at year-end.
Hyundai Puts Focus on Driving Fun With i30, i30 N
Thomas Schmid, Hyundai Motor Europe’s chief operating officer, announces 30 new models and derivatives will be launched in Europe over the next five years.
Missile Dispute Shooting Down Hyundai, Kia in China
For the first six months of 2017 Hyundai and Kia’s combined global sales were down 8.7% from like-2016. Hyundai attributes the fall to nosediving sales in China, where combined deliveries by the Hyundai and Kia joint ventures were down 63% in June and were off 47% for the 6-month period.
Unionized GM Korea Employees Authorize Strike 1
Despite GM Korea suffering heavy financial losses and production and sales volumes shrinking, workers are planning to go on strike to back their demands for a monthly wage increase of 154,883 won ($133) and a bonus of five months’ pay.
GM Korea CEO Resigns Amid Tough Labor Talks, Declining Sales
The resignation and contentious labor negotiations cast a cloud over GM Korea and could be endangering its future at a GM that in recent months has shown it’s willing to shut down or sell off unprofitable global operations.


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