Kia Motors may build a production facility in the UK, according to a report from Auto Express.
Kia’s top management in South Korea is aware that it can’t keep up with global demand for its models, so it may need to build another overseas factory.
Asked by Auto Express whether it’s possible that Kia might follow the examples of Honda, Nissan and Toyota by building a plant in Britain, Thomas Oh, the second in command for Kia’s worldwide operations, replied: “Maybe in the future.”
“It depends on a lot of factors – whether salaries and other production costs are competitive, plus incentive packages, Government grants – that sort of thing. Infrastructure, the ability to mobilise people, and raw labour costs are important, too. As is support from what I call the local society,” Thomas Oh added.
He admitted that some of Kia’s potential customers still have perception issues with the brand. But he insisted that Kia is similar to Toyota and other Japanese manufacturers as far as quality is concerned.
Oh said Audi, BMW and Porsche are winners, while Renault and Peugeot are losers, as the two French carmakers are too dependent on the domestic and European markets. “They’ve failed to develop in big overseas markets, and rising markets. We’re ahead of them. In quantity and quality,” Oh added.