Kia Motors Corp., South Korea's second-largest automaker, said Tuesday it will look to expand its presence in China's premium car market in a bid to increase its share of the world's largest car market.
Jung Chang-ho, head of Kia Motors' China operation, said the carmaker plans to put more focus on meeting demand from China's growing middle class, seeking to differentiate itself from Chinese rivals with its premium brand image and advanced technologies.
"By introducing different kinds of innovative products, Kia will enhance brand loyalty among Chinese consumers," Jung said. "Kia has already moved toward providing consumers with high-end cars."
Kia Motors, an affiliate of industry leader Hyundai Motor Co., sold roughly 333,000 units last year in China, up 38 percent from some 241,000 units in 2009.
Kia saw its sales steadily grow in China by successfully attracting the country's young consumers. It reported record monthly sales of 43,508 vehicles in China last month.
In 2009, China's auto market overtook the United States as the world's largest. China saw its auto sales surge more than 32 percent on-year to hit 18.06 million vehicles last year.