Kia’s Indian entry has been in the news for the past few years but Hyundai’s sister brand continues to be tight-lipped about it. There were reports that the South Korean automaker conducted several market studies including a complete feasibility study in India.
A recent report by Times Of India says that, according to sources, Kia has kick-started the preliminary work on identifying land for a local factory, possible models and suppliers. This indicates that Kia’s Operation India is a go. If things go as per plan, Kia India is expected to start selling cars in 2-3 years’ time. Clearing the governmental formalities, construction of the infrastructure, procuring the tooling and localization of products are all time-consuming processes.
It’s a bit too early to predict Kia India’s product portfolio but one can safely expect a crossover, a SUV and a hatchback to be in the mix. Kia’s comprehensive global lineup also includes a range of sharp looking sedans. Several Hyundai models have a Kia counterpart, so component sharing would play a huge role in the Indian operations.
Times Of India also reports that Hyundai could be using Kia’s new facility to produce some of its models. This would ensure that Kia India’s capacity utilization would be maintained at a satisfactory level even as the brand takes baby steps in the market. It is also to be noted that Hyundai India is in dire need of additional capacity as it’s existing facility is running at near-full capacity.