Less than three decades after sales began, Kia has sold their 10 millionth vehicle in the United States.
That’s an impressive achievement and the company said it makes them “one of the auto industry’s greatest success stories” as well as one of the “fastest OEMs to reach the 10 million mark in America.”
The 10 millionth vehicle was a Runway Red EV6 that was sold by Car Pros Kia in Moreno Valley, California. The fact that the milestone model was electric is interesting to note as Kia is planning to launch an assortment of EVs in the future including the redesigned Niro EV and the all-new EV9 crossover. Even more EVs are on the horizon as Kia intends to have a fully-electrified lineup in the United States by 2040.
Kia America President and CEO, SeungKyu (Sean) Yoon, stated “Selling 10 million vehicles is a significant achievement and we at Kia are proud not only how far we’ve come, but also what the future has in store as we continue our push for sustainable mobility leadership.” He also noted the company wanted to “give back in meaningful ways” so they marked the milestone by making $10,000 (£7,954 / €9,359) donations to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the Alzheimer’s Association, and Freedom Service Dogs of America.
Those groups weren’t the only ones to benefit as the buyer of the 10 millionth model apparently got her EV6 for free. She’ll also receive complementary access to a future NBA and Kia Forum event in the future.
Needless to say, 10 million units in less than 30 years is an impressive accomplishment when you consider Kia had an inauspicious start in America. The brand made its U.S. debut with the Sephia, which cost $8,495 and was initially available at four Portland-area dealers.
While the company started off slowly, the Sportage followed soon after and Kia’s dealership network grew fast as there were dealers in all 50 states, except North Dakota, by the end of the decade. Sales were modest for the first few years, but Kia’s lineup expanded with models such as the Optima, Rio, and Spectra5.
Fast forward to today and the company currently offers 11 different models including the popular K5 and Telluride. Kia also has a plant in Georgia and it has built more than three million vehicles since production began in 2009.