Hyundai Sees Recovering Lost U.S. Share With New Models

Hyundai Motor Co. (005380)’s U.S. operations will recover the market share it lost during the past two years as it takes the constraints off its global factory output and boosts production, the automaker’s top American executive said.

“We want to go back above 5” percent market share, Dave Zuchowski, Hyundai’s U.S. chief executive officer, said in an interview today. “That’s a top priority for the parent company. In reality, that’s probably a two- or three-year plan.’

Hyundai, which almost doubled its U.S. market share from 2005 to 5.1 percent in 2011, saw its share slide to 4.6 percent last year as the company capped global production to avoid quality problems from rapid growth. This year, Hyundai is aiming for 4.7 percent share, as it rolls out redesigned versions of its Genesis luxury car and Sonata family sedan, Zuchowski said.

‘‘Our conversation has changed with the parent company to how can we get you more production,” said Zuchowski, who replaced John Krafcik in January. “They’re getting us enough production to make sure we can grow.”

Krafcik is now president of TrueCar Inc., the auto-buying website, which is seeking to raise more than $100 million in an initial public offering.

Hyundai is targeting a record 745,000 sales in the U.S. this year, from 720,783 last year, Zuchowski said. The pace of sales will pick up in the second half of the year as Hyundai rolls out the new models, he said.

Hyundai’s U.S. sales have fallen 0.7 percent this year through April, according to researcher Autodata Corp. Its market share has declined to 4.4 percent so far in 2014.

“We went for the better part of 18 months without new products,” Zuchowski said. “Our goal is to get the share back and you fix all the problems with new product.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Keith Naughton in West Bloomfield, Michigan, at knaughton3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jamie Butters at jbutters@bloomberg.net Ben Livesey

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