Stoic Stonic: Kia upbeat on compact SUV prospects

Despite a lethargic car market, Kia Motors Philippines is optimistic it can move 300 units of the brand new model, the Kia Stonic.

Stoic Stonic: Kia upbeat on compact SUV prospects

The Stonic is the 11th model in the Kia line-up in the Philippines which will be made available to dealers starting October 15, 2020.

During a virtual briefing, Kia Philippines president Manny Aligada said the company still keeps the forecast of 4,000-units sales for the brand.

“If we look at the sales trajectory, May till July were very positive. it was only in August that the industry felt a bit down but given the recovery we felt, we’re keeping our initial forecast of 4,000 units this 2020,” he said.

He noted that the automotive market, while among those industries sustaining severe damage to sales and operation, continues to be aggressive in its approach to recover what was lost during the onset of the virus pandemic.

“In this new stage of quarantine level, we are expecting that people will be more relaxed. The need for mobility, may not be paramount, but people will be moving about more freely. Thus, we expect sales to recover again starting In September towards the end of the year,” he said.

The industry, he added, expected better sales forecast than what was projected earlier. For 2020, the industry saw a 35 percent drop in sales from 420,000 units forecast pre-COVID to around 275,000 units.

Entry models were noted as the preferred choice of most clients after the harsh lockdown, but higher level or premium models were also moving at moderate level.

“So there’s polarity there. But nevertheless, we see the market getting better as the quarantine levels shift to more relaxed levels,” Aligada said.

To gain more visibility in the market, Kia is expecting to close the year with 38 dealerships. Before the pandemic, the company started 2020 with 30 dealers.

In the 3rd quarter, 4 new dealership opened in Bonifacio Global City, Fairview, Marikina and Isabela, in the far North. Another 4 will sprout in Cainta, San Pablo City, Nueva Ecija and Bohol in the 4th quarter. Othel Campos

Topics: Kia Motors Philippines , Kia Stonic , Manny Aligada , COVID-19
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