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Hyundai, Kia Post Surprising January Sales Increase

2009 Hyundai Sonata GLS

2009 Hyundai Sonata GLS

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Hyundai posted the highest U.S. auto sales increase for January of 2009. Selling 24,512 vehicles last month brought them a 14.3 percent increase in sales over their results for January of 2008. Corporate sibling Kia also did well, with an increase of 3.5 percent for January.

The automaker credits healthy sales of its mid-size Sonata sedan and Santa Fe SUV for the impressive sales despite a troubled market. Helping put the numbers in perspective was David Zuchowski, sales chief at Hyundai Motor America: "to be honest, our January last year was really disappointing. We had a bad start last year." Also helping drive sales were incentives and aggressive advertising.

Nonetheless, any growth in a market down 37.1 percent overall is impressive. The only other brand to actually boost sales for this January versus that month last year was Subaru, whose sales climbed 8 percent.

[source: Automotive News]

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