Hyundai's Verna not for exports, accent is on domestic market

Chennai: Even as it exports the Accent, its mid-sized car from India, Hyundai Motor India Limited says it will not export the recently launched premium Verna, which also belongs to the mid-size segment.

According to managing director and CEO Heung Soo Lheem, the Verna is also being rolled out from Hyundai's plants in Korea, China and Turkey, apart from India. Theae plants will take care of Verna's export markets.

Lheem also clarified that the decision had nothing to do with the 55-per cent import content of the Verna. "The local component content in Verna will go up to 70 per cent in a year's time." The company currently imports the engine components for the new model.

In the last 10 years that Hyundai Motor India has been in existence, it has become the largest exporter of cars from the country. Last year the company earned nearly $600 million from the exports of around 1-lakh units of its small car Santro and the mid-size Accent.

"We export to 55 countries and soon the number will increase by ten more." Adding, he says, "The decision to export is not related to the domestic demand and the huge production capacity that is in place."

"India is important for our overall strategy. Geographically, the country is located advantageously for our other markets. The Indian plant was conceived with an idea of making it as the manufacturing and export base for small cars."