SEOUL, Feb. 7 (Yonhap) -- The average unit price for exported automobiles last year reached a record high of US$15,400, pushed up by the strong performance of SUVs, according to industry statistics Thursday.
Monthly data from the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA) put total exports by five local carmakers last year at 2,447,903, down 3.2 percent from the previous year. The monetary sum from the shipments came to $37.68 billion, 1.6 percent less than the year before.
Despite decreases in both, the unit price of each exported vehicle remained strong from exports of relatively more expensive SUVs, the data indicated, increasing 1.6 percent from 2017.
Local manufacturers shipped 1,386,539 SUVs last year, up 6.7 percent compared with the year before, setting a new record.
"The export volume for vehicles shrank from dulled demand in the global market, but it's fortunate that the export unit price rose from increased shipments of high value-added cars," a KAMA official said.
By manufacturer, Renault Samsung Motors had the highest unit price at $17,100, followed by SsangYong Motor's $17,000. The unit price was $16,200 for Hyundai Motor, $14,900 for Kia Motors and $13,400 for GM Korea.
Records showed that the unit price rose up to the mid-2010s, rising from $12,000 in 2010 to $14,800 in 2014. It pivoted down to $14,200 in 2015 and stayed in a lull in 2016 at the same level before going back up to $15,000 in 2017.
In terms of export volume, the numbers have been going down since peaking at 3,166,000 in 2012.
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