The year didn't start great but got a whole lot better.
According to Hyundai's 2022 sales report, the South Korean brand smashed its own December, Q4, and yearly sales records. Topping off the good news for dealers, executives, and shareholders is that the December numbers were the fifth consecutive month of record-setting retail sales for the brand.
That's all despite the lingering supply chain issues, parts availability problems on the manufacturing side, inflation, and high-interest rates on the consumer side. According to Hyundai, "eco-friendly vehicle retail sales grew 72% compared with December 2021."
The three biggest sellers for Hyundai in that category were the hybrid Elantra, Santa Fe, and Tucson models. The Hyundai Santa Fe's increase of 85% and Ioniq's astounding 2835% over the previous year's sales must have been worth popping a bottle of champagne over at corporate headquarters. Hyundai also sold 22,982 units of its all-electric Ioniq 5, and sales of the Kona EV rose by 35%.
We hope the drastic rise in hybrid and electric vehicle sales is a sign that drivers are making a considered decision regarding their environmental footprint. Still, it's more likely most customers were sick of the ridiculously high gas prices throughout 2022.
December also saw Hyundai hit a significant milestone by selling its 15 millionth vehicle in the US. The company is only 55 years old and didn't land in America until February 1986 with a single model, the Hyundai Excel.
We bring it up because Hyundai came out of the gate strong by becoming the brand that sold the most passenger vehicles in its first year of business in the United States.
"With a strong December performance, Hyundai achieved its fifth consecutive retail sales record month," said Randy Parker, CEO of Hyundai Motor America. "This was the best Q4 in retail and total sales for the company. Through the combined efforts of our dealers, regions, and affiliates, Hyundai was able to accomplish an all-time retail sales record for the year and gain substantial market share."