July Sales: The Korean Juggernaut Takes No Prisoners And Shows No Mercy To Its Vanquished Enemies

By Blake Z. Rong | July 06, 2012
Perhaps Hyundai Motor America, whose initials are HMA, should change its name to H.A.M. Another month of record sales capped off the two major Korean automakers nicely, with an all-time June sales record topping last year's all-time June sales record. In 2012, there are 356,669 new Hyundais running around the streets of Anytown, U.S.A. Kia fared nicely on the strength of the Optima, which helped it smash its last-June figures with a 22nd consecutive monthly sales record (above almost every other Kia model). If anything, the Koreans will ask: who gon stop them? Hyundai Winners
  • Azera: Hyundai claims that the Azera sold 350-percent more in June 2012 than it did last year, but that's only because 222 memory-stricken people shuffled their tennis ball walkers onto a Hyundai lot and sat in the one car that had been the lineup's aging cast-off. The new Azera deserves far better than that.
  • Sonata: Hyundai's middle child (between the Azera and Elantra, anyhow) did pretty well for itself, with an increase of over 2,000 cars. Middle cars need love, too.
  • Accent: Over 5,660 of you out there bought Accents, which is more than the 3,612 that did last year.
  • Veloster: It counts as a sales explosion if your car wasn't actually sold the year before. So, there's that.
Hyundai Losers
  • Santa Fe: Most of Hyundai's SUVs took a beating, including the Tuscon and the Veracruz. The Santa Fe dropped by a thousand cars. The Tucson, 200. And the Veracruz? Somehow, 671 people bought that jellybean-shaped lump once rejected by Mommy Jeans Monthly itself.
  • Elantra: Sales dropped by about 2,000 cars—hopefully the introduction of the coupe and GT, which you can read about here and here, respectively, will help the Elantra regain sales successes.
Kia Winners
  • Optima: Evidently, dreaming about Adriana Lima paid off for the Optima. Sales almost doubled from 7,099 in June 2011 to 13,393 units this year. In fact, the bulk of Kia's sales shone from the Optima, as most of its sales increase from last year rested on the 6,294 additional Optimas pushed out the door. What was in that sleeping powder, anyway?
  • Rio: The Rio may be the only other Kia model that gained a sales increase, but at a plus of 1,714 cars—from 1,954 in 2011—it's certainly significant. It's no longer a punch line. When the SX range-topper becomes available later this fall, people will be tickled to find a (likely) sub-$20k car that comes with leather(ish) seats.
Kia Losers
  • Soul: Evidently enough Soul puns killed the market for the little hatchback, as sales fell by about a thousand units, to 10,199. Take that, you increasingly overplayed animated hamsters!
  • Sedona: HMA's tradition of naming their vehicles after the preferred sun-drenched, casino-adjacent vacation spots of Southwest American retirees has not been paying off. (See: Hyundai Tuscon, Hyundai Veracruz, Kia Salty Senorita of Scottsdale)
Source: Hyundai, Kia
  • MY13 Elantragt 01
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