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(LEAD) Hyundai reenters Japan with online-only sales, all-electric cars

All News 19:04 February 08, 2022

(ATTN: UPDATES with details in paras 4, 10)

SEOUL, Feb. 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's leading carmaker Hyundai Motor Co. said Tuesday it has reentered the Japanese passenger vehicle market for the first time in 12 years, but this time with an online-only sales platform and all-electric models.

Hyundai advanced into Japan in 2001 but pulled out of the neighboring market in 2009 after selling a mere 15,000 gasoline cars during the first foray.

"Hyundai seeks to provide sustainable mobility (to the markets) under the motto of Progress for Humanity. Japan is the market from which we have to learn and into which we have to explore," Hyundai's CEO Chang Jae-hoon said in a statement.

Hyundai plans to receive orders for the two models in May and begin to deliver ordered vehicles in July. The IONIQ 5 and the Nexo are priced at 4.79 million yen (US$41,000) and 7.77 million yen, respectively.

The company didn't provide any target sales figures in Japan this year.

The maker of the Sonata sedan and the Santa Fe SUV plans to initially launch the IONIQ 5 all-electric car and the Nexo hydrogen fuel-cell electric car in Japan, the statement said.

In February last year, Hyundai unveiled the IONIQ 5, the first model embedded with Hyundai Motor Group's own EV-only electric-global modular platform as it strives to morph into a future mobility solutions provider.

The IONIQ 5 is expected to compete against two battery-powered models -- Toyota Motors Corp.'s bZ4X SUV and Nissan Motor Co.'s Ariya SUV.

Hyundai plans to release more zero-emission models in Japan where it has changed the name of its Japanese subsidiary to Hyundai Mobility Japan from Hyundai Motors Japan.

Imported carmakers reportedly account for a meager 5.4 percent in the Japanese passenger vehicle market, with local carmakers claiming 94.6 percent share.

This file photo provided by Hyundai Motor shows the IONIQ 5 all-electric model. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

This file photo provided by Hyundai Motor shows the IONIQ 5 all-electric model. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)


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