KIA PHILIPPINES Motor Corp. is aiming to sell at least 7,000 units in 2023 as it targets further growth, according to its operations head.

“I think we will hit a minimum of at least 7,000 [units sold] for the year, if everything goes well,” Kia Philippines Chief Operating Officer Brian James B. Buendia said in a chance interview in Taguig City on Tuesday.

In 2022, Kia Philippines sold 5,012 units, higher by 34% compared with the 3,748 units sold in 2021.

Mr. Buendia said Kia Philippines is eyeing to corner at least a 1.6% market share for this year, bigger than the 1.4% share last year.

“[For] the market share, we’re looking at from 1.4% to 1.6% at least for the year. We are looking at better performances for the third and fourth quarters,” he said.

According to Mr. Buendia, the growth drivers for Kia Philippines will be its Stonic crossover, Soluto sedan, and K2500 commercial truck.

“Kia Philippines is already a major player in the local industry as well as in the region,” he said. 

“Kia Philippines became one of the fastest-growing car brands locally and was also recognized by Kia Asia Pacific for achieving the highest growth rate in the region, as well as being the number one independent distributor in retail sales in 2022. I will build upon these accolades to further steer Kia Philippines to greater success,” he added.

Meanwhile, Mr. Buendia said Kia Philippines is aiming to reach 50 full-operating dealerships in the country by 2024. Currently, the brand has 45 dealerships. 

He said three dealerships are in the pipeline — one in Bacoor and two in other parts of Luzon. 

“We are going to open the 46th dealership in Bacoor, Cavite. It is built already. We just have to get the permits, and then four more locations,” Mr. Buendia said.

“Definitely two dealerships by next year. One is in Metro Manila and the other one is in the southern part of Luzon,” he added. 

Industry data showed that Kia Philippines sold 1,678 units as of end-May, up 12.9% from the 1,486 units sold in the same period last year. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave