Despite the global economic crisis that various industries faced early this year, Hyundai emerged as a strong, challenger brand, posting sales that albeit modest, continue to reinforce its presence in both domestic and overseas markets. With its upbeat sales performance, the Hyundai Automotive Group has another reason to celebrate, now that it has moved up to number four in global auto sales rankings. Hyundai Automotive Group sold a total of 2.153 million units in the first six months of this year, according to the U.S.-based Automotive News. This latest milestone for Hyundai also counts as a victory for Asian automakers, as it is one of two Asian brands to ever be included in the Global Top 5 rankings.

From rank 10 in 2000, Hyundai Automotive Group rose to sixth place in 2006, and kept its Top 5 position since 2007. Now up another notch in the global arena, Hyundai remains optimistic that its sales performance will continue to gain momentum, especially since July global sales snapped up for Hyundai Motor Company, South Korea's number one automaker.

Hyundai Motor Company (HMC) posted a remarkable 36.6 percent rise in July global sales compared to a year earlier. Also beefing up HMC's success is its promising growth in the domestic market, as its sales rose 15.4 percent to 60,638 units in July from 52,535 units a year earlier.
For the first seven months of the year, Hyundai's total overseas sales, including both exports from Korea and sales from overseas plants, leaped by 44.5 percent to 201,985 units in July, up from 139,772 units a year earlier, supported by brisk sales of Hyundai's overseas plants in China, India, and Czech Republic, which began its full operation.

Exports from Korea also propped up Hyundai's global sales at 37.2 percent to 82,732 units for the month compared to a year earlier, while sales from overseas plants jumped 50.1 percent to 119,253 units. Increased supplies from domestic plants has been attributed for these gains, as there were no summer holidays and strikes in July, compared to the same month last year.

Demand for small-and-medium-sized cars in the global market is expected to rise in the second half of this year. Hyundai Motor will respond to the changing market demands by increasing supplies of those cars and continuously expanding marketing activities to suit local markets.

With the Hyundai Automotive Group anointed as the new Top 4 global automaker, and Hyundai Motor Company's relentless drive to offer cars that characterize the refinement and confidence of motoring, the future certainly looks exciting for this fast-rising automotive brand. Though challenged, there's surely no stopping Hyundai from taking a bold leap forward in its aim for leadership in the auto industry.