Report – Hyundai prepares van expansion plan for Europe image

The light commercial-vehicle sector is one lucrative part of any region’s automotive industry, with Europe not counting as an exception.

Here, Renault and PSA, but also Volkswagen have a big grip on the van segment, and their dominance looks to be soon threatened by Hyundai’s decision to enter the game. Hyundai is ready to tackle the European commercial van market through a new model, built in the low wage country of Turkey, according to a source familiar with the South Korean automaker’s plans. The big van should make its official debut this year in September, during the well-known Hanover truck show, with production slotted for early next year in Turkey with the Karsan local partner.

“If LCVs were a 6-8 % margin business in the past, this may deteriorate for some as the cost spread between manufacturers widens,” said Erich Hauser, an analyst at brokerage ISI Group in London. “VW would have been quite happy building its vans in Germany for ever, so clearly something has changed in this market.”

Volkswagen is now shifting its second light commercial vehicle (LCV), the Crafter, from Germany to lower-wage Poland, as competition in the segment becomes tougher, and earnings margins begin to shrink because of larger discounts.

Via Automotive News Europe