Kia Philippines under Ayala Group is off to a good first year as it sees doubling its sales in 2019 to about 5,000 units from 2,200 in 2018.
This, however, is way below the 10,000 units the company initially targetted.
Manny Aligada, Kia Philippines president, said intense competition in a shrinking market affected sales not just of the company but the entire industry as well.
From a growth of 30 percent in 2013 and 2014 and 17 percent in 2017, industry sales dipped 15 percent in 2018.
“There should have been no headwinds in 2019 but the forecast was about flattish, about 2 to 2.5 percent, about 410,000 units from 400,00 last year.
Given that, the assumptions of getting 10,000 (units for Kia) will not be there as competition has been very active,” Aligada said.
But Aligada noted some good news as Kia’s July year-to-date performance showed a growth of 82 percent.
“If we follow the trend (of second half 2018), we should be (hitting) a little bit over 5,000 units for the year,” Aligada said.
Aligada is optimistic of next year’s prospects as Kia Philippines readies the launch before the end of the year the of the Seltos, a cross-over five-seater mix mini sport utility vehicle and sedan.
“Here we hope to hit a sweet spot… the P1 million to P 1.4 million range. Assuming we launch it this year, the full impact will be next year,” Aligada said.
He added: “Apart from the industry getting real normalization, our line will be a better representation of the big and growing segments.
Seltos will be in the significant volume segment because of the price point and the design, the form it is coming in.”
The Seltos will compete with the Hyundai Kona, Honda HRV and Subaru XV.
The model will add to the 10 models of Kia in the Philippines. Another model will be launched in 2020.