Fleet News

Kia's UK launches held until problems resolved

KIA will not launch any new cars in the UK until future ownership of the troubled Korean manufacturer is resolved. Kia Motors, South Korea's third largest manufacturer, has gone into court receivership as speculation mounts that the industrial group Samsung, which started to build cars last month, in conjunction with Ford, which already has a stake in the company, would take control.

Amid the continued turmoil in both the Korean and Far East economies, Mark Quinn, managing director of Kia Cars (UK), said while it was business as usual in Britain he would not launch any new cars in this country until the restructuring of the company had been completed. He admits that the turmoil has resulted in Kia Cars (UK) losing some sales although he claims 'the worst is over'.

In the near future Kia was scheduled to unveil the replacement Mentor, its new lower-medium sector contender, and was due to follow that with the launch of Credos, its new entrant in the upper-medium sector. Both vehicles were scheduled to be on sale in the UK by the summer. However, as far as the UK is concerned Quinn said: 'Kia Cars (UK) continues to trade normally. We are continuing to sell cars and we are keeping our dealers informed. What has happened is the next stage in the restructuring of the company.'

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