Hyundai Motor Co. Ltd. says it will begin building vehicles in China by year’s end.

Production of 500,000 units annually is targeted by 2010, including output of Hyundai’s EF Sonata and Elantra XD models, at a plant near Beijing to be operated with joint venture partner Beijing Automotive Industry Holding.

The JV will get under way by the end of this year, with Hyundai investing an initial $100 million and raising its contribution to $430 million by 2005 and $1.1 billion by 2010.

Annual capacity will be 2,000 units this year, ramping up to 30,000 units in 2003, 200,000 in 2005 and 500,000 by 2010, Hyundai says.