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Hyundai Motor tops EV sales in Indonesia

Carmaker takes up 56.5% of Indonesia’s burgeoning EV market

Sept. 5, 2023 - 15:11 By Byun Hye-jin

Indonesia President Joko Widodo (first from left) signs his name on Hyundai’s flagship electric vehicle Ioniq 5, while Hyundai Motor Group Executive Chair Chung Euisun (second from left) and other executives and government officials applaud during a ceremony celebrating the construction of the carmaker’s Indonesian plant in Bekasi, Indonesia, in March 2022. (Hyundai Motor Group)

Hyundai Motor Group said Tuesday it has topped the list of electric vehicle sales in the Indonesian market, the country with the fourth-largest population and the No. 1 nickel reserves in the world.

The carmaker sold a total of 3,913 EVs and posted a 56.5 percent market share in Indonesia as of July. Its flagship battery-powered sport utility vehicle Ioniq 5 took up most of the sales with 3,819 units.

The Ioniq 5 was the first EV manufactured within the Indonesia plant, which started commercial operation in March 2022, according to Hyundai. With local production of the flagship EV, it outpaced China-based Wuling Motors, who hit No. 1 EV sales in Indonesia last year.

During a ceremony celebrating the construction of the carmaker’s Indonesia plant in the city of Bekasi held in the same month, Indonesia President Joko Widodo said, “Ioniq 5 will be a staggering milestone in the development of the country’s EV market.”

Accelerating its electrification strategy, Hyundai plans to further expand footing in Indonesia, a top emerging country that aims to become the EV hub of ASEAN, utilizing its abundance in nickel, a key EV battery material.

Last month, the carmaker showcased its second electrified SUV model Ioniq 6 at the GAIKINDO Indonesia International Auto Show (GIIAS).

It also plans to secure more stable EV supply chain after completing the construction of a joint battery cell manufacturing plant with LG Energy Solution in Karawang next year. Scheduled for commercial operation in April 2024, the plant’s annual production capacity is projected at 10 gigawatt-hours, enough to manufacture 150,000 units of Ioniq 5.

As for bolstering EV charging infrastructure, Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Indonesia signed a memorandum of understanding with Lippo Malls Indonesia, one of the largest local distributors, to install charging stations in 52 shopping malls nationwide.

The world’s third-largest auto giant said it is witnessing a wind of change in the Indonesian automotive market, which has been dominated by Japanese carmakers for more than 50 years.

The number of Hyundai cars sold in the burgeoning market surged more than tenfold last year to 31,965 units from a year earlier, ranking eighth place. During the January-August period, it jumped to sixth place, selling 20,065 units, a 48.1 percent jump, compared to last year.

As of July, its 3.4 percent market share still lags behind Japanese auto brands, however, it is well-received by Indonesian customers, the company said. For instance, it was named as the second-largest carmaker to have sold 3,727 units during the GIIAS event, following Toyota. Hyundai outpaced Mitsubishi, Honda and Daihatsu, who hold larger market share.

Hyundai car models sold in the motor show include Stargazer, Ioniq 5 and Creta. Exclusively launched for the ASEAN region, the multipurpose vehicle Stargazer, in particular, received more sales orders than the Toyota’s rival model. The company plans to add Stargazer X to its lineup with higher ground clearance and a powerful exterior.

The automaker is also eyeing entry into other countries in the 10-member bloc, with plans to boost car exports from Indonesia. According to data from the Association of Indonesia Automotive Industries cited by Hyundai, its export volume produced in Indonesia and shipped to adjacent markets in ASEAN and Middle East came to 30,114 units, a 70 percent jump from last year, during the January-August period.