The company continues to invest in the development and commercialisation of autonomous driving and eco-friendly vehicles.
Kia Motors India, the world’s 8th largest automaker, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Andhra Pradesh government to grow the uptake of electric vehicles (EV) and the development of a local EV infrastructure.
The memorandum was signed by chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu and Kookhyun Shim, MD and CEO of Kia Motors India. As part of the agreement, Kia Motors has provided the government with three examples of its global best-selling eco car — a Niro Hybrid, Niro Plug-in Hybrid and a Niro EV. Kia is also installing a vehicle charging station at Vijayawada, for representatives from the regional government to charge their new environment-friendly fleet.
Kia Motors set up its 15th manufacturing plant in Anantapur district in AP with an investment of $1.1 billion during 2017. The plant has a capacity to make over three lakh cars per annum. The production is expected to start in 2019 and the first car will be rolled out by February 2019.
“In the last three and half years, Andhra Pradesh has attracted investments of around `25,000 crore into the state in the automotive segment. Besides, 16 Kia associates and vendors are setting up their facilities in Andhra Pradesh. They are expected to invest `4,790 crore and provide an employment to 6,600 people,” Naidu said. The land is already given and work will commence soon, he added.
The partnership signifies Kia’s long-term commitment to build eco-friendly vehicles at its new Anantapur plant. The state government is developing 14 smart cities and Kia Motors will be providing consultancy services for EV vehicles, especially in mass transportation services.
As part of Kia’s commitment to the market, the Korean brand is working with the regional government to design a new generation of transportation systems. This is part of a wider plan by Kia to offer alternative mobility within the country.
“Kia is taking a lead in the global eco-friendly vehicle market, and we are confident of achieving the same in India. This partnership with the Andhra Pradesh government highlights how we can support the growth of EV infrastructure and uptake of eco-friendly vehicles, bringing exciting new possibilities for future mobility in India”, Shim added.
“We will be launching one new product every six months for next three years in the Indian market until we reach the production target of 300,000 units annually,” said Yong S Kim, executive director, Kia Motors India.
Kia’s ‘ACE’ strategy is to produce Autonomous, Connected and ECO/Electric cars and will see the brand adopt connected car technologies across every vehicle segment by 2030. Further, the company plans to offer 16 electrified vehicles by 2025. The company continues to invest in the development and commercialisation of autonomous driving and eco-friendly vehicles.
Kia has been developing eco-friendly vehicle technology for over 20 years. In 2009, it launched the sub brand ‘EcoDynamics’ in the pursuit of zero emissions vehicles. Since the introduction of Kia’s first ‘EcoDynamics’ vehicle, the Forte LPi Hybrid in 2009, Kia has expanded its line-up of eco-friendly vehicles to three hybrids, two plug-in hybrids and two battery electric vehicles across global markets. It also continues to develop fuel-cell electric vehicle technology.