Click here to close now.


API Journal Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Yakov Fain, XebiaLabs Blog, Jim Scott, Liz McMillan

News Feed Item

Kia Motors America Posts All-Time Sales and Market Share Records in Year Filled With Historic Achievements

Fast-Growing Brand Surpasses the 500,000 Unit Mark for First Time in Company History En Route to 18th Straight Year of Increased U.S. Market Share

DETROIT, Jan. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Over the course of the last several years, the Kia brand has matured and grown dramatically in the U.S. market while capturing the attention of a wide variety of consumers, and no other year in Kia Motors America's history has been as successful as 2012 with the company reaching an all-time high sales total of 557,599 units.  On the way to a 14.9-percent increase in year-over-year sales and 18th straight year of increased market share – finishing at an all-time high of 3.85 percent – Kia sold its four millionth vehicle in the U.S. in 2012 and received more awards and accolades than any time in the brand's history in the market.

Kia's standing as one of the fastest growing car companies in the U.S.(1) can be attributed to a comprehensive line of stylish and fun-to-drive vehicles – including the all-new 2014 Forte and redesigned Sorento scheduled to go on sale in the first quarter of 2013 – as well as several high-profile brand initiatives and the continued success of Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia (KMMG), which is responsible for the creation of more than 11,000 direct and supplier jobs.  From large-scale marketing activities and road racing victories to the formation of charitable partnerships with and DC Entertainment, 2012 was an historic year for the Kia brand, which continues its dramatic transformation.

"Kia is a completely different company from what it was just three years ago, and 2012 will go down as a milestone year that demonstrated the power of our brand transformation, which began with the arrival of the Soul in 2009," said Byung Mo Ahn, group president and CEO of KMA and KMMG.  "As Kia continues to grow and strengthen the brand, we remain committed to advancing value to new levels of sophistication by introducing vehicles with world-class design, technology and amenities."

2012 Milestones:

  • Sales:  KMA surpassed its previous best-ever annual sales total in 11 months and sold more than 500,000 vehicles in the U.S. for the first time in company history.  KMA's annual sales record was highlighted by best-ever quarterly sales in Q2 with 150,647 units sold, besting the previous record of 140,330 units sold in Q2 2011.  The U.S.-built* Optima was the brand's best-selling vehicle every month and became the third Kia nameplate to sell more than 100,000 vehicles in a single year.  Together with the Sorento, Kia's U.S.-built* vehicles accounted for 48.7-percent of sales, and the Soul urban passenger vehicle continued its sales success topping 100,000 units for the second straight year.
  • KMMG/Optima:  Named "Large Manufacturer of the Year" by the State of Georgia in April, Kia's U.S. plant in West Point, Ga., is responsible for the creation of more than 11,000 direct and supplier jobs.  Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia produced its 500,000th vehicle in February and completed a series of expansion projects totaling $100 million to increase annual capacity to 360,000 vehicles.
  • Advanced Technology:  Co-developed with Microsoft®(2) and based on Windows Embedded Auto software, UVO eServices – the second-generation of the company's innovative telematics and infotainment system – debuted at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and represents an evolution from the original UVO system's capabilities.  Set to first appear on the redesigned 2014 Sorento in Q1 2013, UVO eServices will be powered by an exclusive free smartphone(3) application that will provide Kia owners with a unique in-vehicle connectivity experience, which includes Google Maps integration, navigation, diagnostics capabilities, music customization and a suite of safety and security features.  UVO is short for "Your Voice."
  • Corporate Social Responsibility:  As Kia's sales rose in 2012, so did the company's commitment to corporate social responsibility, including providing funds to the American Red Cross to assist victims of Hurricane Sandy.  Additionally, Kia formed the first-ever national automotive partnership with – named by Fast Company as one of "The Most Innovative Companies" in 2011 – to raise funds and supply much needed resources to more than 500,000 public school students across America and supported DC Entertainment's "We Can Be Heroes" campaign to raise funds to fight the hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa by creating a fleet of superhero rides inspired by the iconic characters from DC Comics' Justice League comic books.
  • Memorable Marketing:  Kia's efforts to raise consumer awareness, perception and consideration of the brand continued, focusing on four key marketing pillars:  music, sports, connected life and pop culture.  The year began with another highly effective Super Bowl ad, titled "Drive the Dream," for the range-topping Optima SXL model which starred supermodel Adriana Lima, legendary rockers Motley Crue, and mixed martial arts legend Chuck Liddell in a Gen X couple's wildest thoughts after Mr. Sandman sprinkles "Sweet Dreams" dust on them.  The eclectic cast helped generate buzz for the campaign before, during and after the Super Bowl with Tweets and Facebook postings.  According to, the Super Bowl campaign caused a 432-percent spike in Kia Optima searches, following the game and the Kia brand received an 18-percent boost.
    Not to be outdone, Kia's music-loving hamsters (the stars of some of the most watched viral videos in the world over the last three years) returned in a new campaign for the wildly popular Soul urban passenger vehicle.  The campaign brought the 21st century's electronic dance music craze to a stuffy 18th century opera house.  Set to "In My Mind" (Axwell remix), "Bringing Down the House" appeared on more than 18,000 movie screens nationwide followed by the television debut during the MTV Video Music Awards as well as presence on all Kia social and digital platforms, including Facebook, YouTube and  From hamster wheels on city streets to a post-apocalyptic video game world, the hamsters have earned international acclaim and notoriety for the Soul and elevated the Kia brand by appealing to the young and the young-at-heart through marketing efforts that emphasize creativity, optimism and fun.
    Kia is currently in its sixth season as the "Official Automotive Partner of the NBA," and added the Oklahoma City Thunder to its roster of 15 team partnerships in December.  Los Angeles Clippers All-Star power forward Blake Griffin and Kia's global brand ambassador also appeared in a series of humorous new television commercials featuring the best-selling Optima midsize sedan and innovative UVO voice-activated infotainment system.  In the five 30-second spots rolling out during the 2012 – 2013 NBA season, Griffin offers helpful suggestions to younger versions of himself as Kia's UVO voice-activated infotainment system takes his futuristic Optima on a time-traveling musical journey through the mid-1990s and early-2000s. 
    As part of KMA's strategic marketing plan, the company continued its partnership with golf superstar Michelle Wie, one of the most recognizable youth athletes in the world, and renewed its Official Automotive Partnership with the LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association).  Kia also signed a multi-year agreement as the title sponsor of the Kia Classic LPGA golf tournament, announcing that the 2013 Kia Classic will move to the Aviara Golf Club at the Park Hyatt in Carlsbad, Calif., in March.
    In the fall, Kia Motors America joined forces with renowned comic book publisher DC Entertainment to bring the world's greatest superheroes to life by combining automotive styling with comic book art.  The 10-month long partnership, which will ultimately yield eight individually customized vehicles, harnesses the talents of legendary comic book artist and DC Entertainment Co-Publisher Jim Lee, who has collaborated on the designs of the vehicles with his vision for each iconic member of DC Comics' Justice League.  To that, each core member of the Justice League line-up – Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Aquaman and Cyborg – has been matched to a Kia vehicle based on key attributes and character traits to create custom, one-of-a-kind rides to be unveiled at major auto shows and Comic-Con events across the U.S.  Many of Kia's most recognizable and decorated models – the Optima, Soul, Sorento, Sportage, Rio and Forte – will wear the iconic colors and marks of the legendary Justice League superheroes and be built by West Coast Customs, RIDES magazine, Import Tuner magazine, among others.  The Kia/DC Entertainment partnership benefits "We Can Be Heroes," a giving campaign dedicated to helping fight hunger in the Horn of Africa.
  • Remarkable Rookie Season in Pirelli World Challenge:  Kia's prowess on the race track reached a new level in 2012 when the company launched into the Pirelli World Challenge with its best-selling vehicle, the Optima mid-size sedan.  A pair of turbocharged Optimas took to the grueling 12-race schedule across eight tracks and two countries and turned heads as they enjoyed unprecedented success for a rookie season, including two pole positions and two race wins at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park and a total of six podium finishes.  For 2013, the Optimas are back and are looking to make a run at Kia's second U.S. road racing championship.  The 2013 Pirelli World Challenge schedule has expanded to tracks such as Circuit of the Americas, Streets of Toronto, Lime Rock Park and Houston Grand Prix.
  • Awards & Accolades: 
    • 2013 Sorento, 2012 Optima and 2012 Rio named to Consumer Guide's "Best Buy" list
    • 2013 Optima named by Fox Business as a "Best Car for the Budget-Minded Retiree"
    • 2012 Optima awarded Kiplinger's Personal Finance "2012 Best New Car Value"
    • 2012 Optima named Autobytel's "2012 Sedan of the Year"
    • 2012 Optima and Sorento named among "Best Family Cars of 2012" by and Parents magazine
    • 2012 Optima Hybrid named one of ten "Cheapest Hybrid Cars" by Automobile Magazine
    • 2012 Optima and Sportage named to NADAguides "Must Consider List for Summer 2012"
    • 2013 Sorento named to Autobytel's list of "10 of the Best Compact SUVs"
    • 2013 Sorento named as the vehicle of the month by NADAguides
    • 2013 Sorento and Sportage named "Best Value" in Strategic Vision survey
    • 2013 Sorento awarded silver medal in Auto Trader's "Automotive Games Versatility and Hauling:  SUVs and Crossovers" categories
    • 2012 Sorento named to "10 Best Family Cars of 2012" list by Kelley Blue Book's
    • 2012 Forte picked as a "Top Ten for Teens" by USAA
    • 2012 Forte 5-door, Koup and Optima named Best Subcompact and Family Sedans by MotorWeek
    • 2012 Forte named as a "Top Car for College Grads" by Total Car Score
    • 2012 Forte 5-door and Koup awarded's "2012 Best Value in America"
    • 2013 Rio and Forte Koup named to's list of "10 Great Cars for First Time Drivers"
    • 2012 Rio 5-door named "Subcompact Car of the Year" by Fama's Mujeres Al Volante
    • 2012 Rio named by Autobytel as one of the "Best Small Sedans of 2012"
    • 2012 Rio received Red Dot and IDEA Design Awards
    • 2012 Rio named to "Best Cars for Teens" list by
    • 2012 Rio 5-door, Forte and Soul named as "Most Versatile 2012 New Cars Under 20K" by NADAguides
    • 2013 Rio and Soul named by Autobytel to list of "Top 10 Lowest Priced New Cars"
    • 2012 Soul wins Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year Award in Urban Category
    • 2012 Soul named segment winner in Initial Quality Study (IQS) by J.D. Power and Associates
    • 2012 Soul named one of the "Top 10 Coolest New Cars Under $18,000" and "Top Tailgating Car for 2012" by Kelley Blue Book's
    • 2012 Soul ranked number one on the "10 Best Back-to-School Cars in 2012" list by Kelley Blue Book's
    • 2012 Soul recognized for Lowest Cost of Ownership in Non-Luxury Compact Car category by Kelley Blue Book's
    • 2012 Soul named by Autobytel as "Best New Crossover SUV for College Students"
    • 2012 Soul named to Autobytel's list of "10 Best New Cars Under $15,000"
    • 2012 Soul and Optima ranked class-best in APEAL Study by J.D. Power and Associates
    • 2012 Soul and Sorento named "Top Scoring 2012 Car" in segment by Total Car Score
    • 2012 Soul and Sportage named to Autobytel's "Fast Five:  Most-Affordable Crossovers of 2012"
    • 2012 Sportage named one of five "Most Affordable SUVs 2012" by Autobytel
    • 2012 Sportage named to "Top Cars for Teens" list by AAA
    • 2012 Sportage named a "Best Value" by USAA
    • 2012 Sportage named as one of "Top Six Cars Under $30,000 With Five-Star Safety Ratings" and "Top 8 Least Expensive New SUVs" by
    • Kia Justice League cars named to Autobytel's "10 hottest SEMA cars" list
    • honored by J.D. Power and Associates, Mobile Marketing Association and Digiday
    • Kia Motors Corporation named to list Top 100 Best Global Brands by Interbrand
    • Kia named to "Top 10 Best Car Brands for 2012" list by Total Car Score
    • Kia Motors awarded the Bronze Effie at the 2012 North American Effie Awards for "Not Your Average Slam Dunk" Blake Griffin/Optima campaign
    • Kia Motors named "Best Total Cost of Ownership Brand" by Kelley Blue Book's
    • Kia Motors America Corporate Headquarters honored with "Good Design is Good Business" award from Architectural Record
    • Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia named "Large Manufacturer of the Year" by State of Georgia

Kia:  One of the World's Fastest Moving Global Automotive Brands

Kia Motors America is one of only three auto brands to increase U.S. sales in each of the past four years, and in 2012 the company surpassed the 500,000 unit mark for the first time.  With a full line of fun-to-drive cars and CUVs, Kia is advancing value to new levels of sophistication by combining European-influenced styling – under the guidance of chief design officer Peter Schreyer – with cutting-edge technologies, premium amenities, affordable pricing and the lowest cost of ownership in the industry.  Kia recently joined the exclusive ranks of Interbrand's "Top 100 Best Global Brands," and is poised to continue its record-breaking momentum with seven all-new or significantly redesigned vehicles arriving in showrooms in 2013.  Over the past decade Kia Motors has invested more than $1.4 billion in the U.S., including the company's first U.S. assembly plant in West Point, Georgia – Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia (KMMG) – which is responsible for the creation of more than 11,000 plant and supplier jobs.  The success of the U.S.-built* Optima and Sorento in two of the industry's largest segments has fueled Kia's growth and is complemented by Kia's comprehensive lineup which includes the Sportage compact CUV, Soul urban passenger vehicle, Optima Hybrid, Forte compact sedan, 5-door compact hatchback and Forte Koup two-door coupe, Rio and Rio 5-door sub-compacts and Sedona minivan.

About Kia Motors America

Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. KMA offers a complete line of vehicles through more than 765 dealers throughout the United States and serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA. In 2012, KMA recorded its best-ever annual sales total and gained U.S. market share for the 18th consecutive year.  Kia is poised to continue its momentum and will continue to build the brand through design innovation, quality, value, advanced safety features and new technologies.

Information about Kia Motors America and its full vehicle line-up is available at its website – For media information, including photography, visit

* The Sorento and Optima GDI (EX Trims and certain LX Trims only) and GDI Turbo are built in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts.

(1) Based on comparison of 12-month retail sales from November 2007 to November 2012 of all U.S. automotive brands and five-year average sales growth.

(2) Microsoft is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.

(3) At launch, the Apple iPhone will be the only UVO eServices compatible device. Apple iOS6 compatibility expected early 2013. Additional compatible devices expected late 2013. iPhone® is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.

SOURCE Kia Motors America

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
Today air travel is a minefield of delays, hassles and customer disappointment. Airlines struggle to revitalize the experience. GE and M2Mi will demonstrate practical examples of how IoT solutions are helping airlines bring back personalization, reduce trip time and improve reliability. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Dr. Sarah Cooper, M2Mi's VP Business Development and Engineering, will explore the IoT cloud-based platform technologies driving this change including privacy controls, data transparency and integration of real time context w...
Electric power utilities face relentless pressure on their financial performance, and reducing distribution grid losses is one of the last untapped opportunities to meet their business goals. Combining IoT-enabled sensors and cloud-based data analytics, utilities now are able to find, quantify and reduce losses faster – and with a smaller IT footprint. Solutions exist using Internet-enabled sensors deployed temporarily at strategic locations within the distribution grid to measure actual line loads.
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new data-driven world, marketplaces reign supreme while interoperability, APIs and applications deliver un...
The Internet of Everything is re-shaping technology trends–moving away from “request/response” architecture to an “always-on” Streaming Web where data is in constant motion and secure, reliable communication is an absolute necessity. As more and more THINGS go online, the challenges that developers will need to address will only increase exponentially. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Todd Greene, Founder & CEO of PubNub, will explore the current state of IoT connectivity and review key trends and technology requirements that will drive the Internet of Things from hype to reality.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data shows "less than 10 percent of IoT developers are making enough to support a reasonably sized team....
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
The IoT market is on track to hit $7.1 trillion in 2020. The reality is that only a handful of companies are ready for this massive demand. There are a lot of barriers, paint points, traps, and hidden roadblocks. How can we deal with these issues and challenges? The paradigm has changed. Old-style ad-hoc trial-and-error ways will certainly lead you to the dead end. What is mandatory is an overarching and adaptive approach to effectively handle the rapid changes and exponential growth.
Today’s connected world is moving from devices towards things, what this means is that by using increasingly low cost sensors embedded in devices we can create many new use cases. These span across use cases in cities, vehicles, home, offices, factories, retail environments, worksites, health, logistics, and health. These use cases rely on ubiquitous connectivity and generate massive amounts of data at scale. These technologies enable new business opportunities, ways to optimize and automate, along with new ways to engage with users.
The IoT is upon us, but today’s databases, built on 30-year-old math, require multiple platforms to create a single solution. Data demands of the IoT require Big Data systems that can handle ingest, transactions and analytics concurrently adapting to varied situations as they occur, with speed at scale. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chad Jones, chief strategy officer at Deep Information Sciences, will look differently at IoT data so enterprises can fully leverage their IoT potential. He’ll share tips on how to speed up business initiatives, harness Big Data and remain one step ahead by apply...
There will be 20 billion IoT devices connected to the Internet soon. What if we could control these devices with our voice, mind, or gestures? What if we could teach these devices how to talk to each other? What if these devices could learn how to interact with us (and each other) to make our lives better? What if Jarvis was real? How can I gain these super powers? In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Chris Matthieu, co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, will show you!
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the cloud and the best price/performance value available. ProfitBricks was named one of the coolest Clo...
As a company adopts a DevOps approach to software development, what are key things that both the Dev and Ops side of the business must keep in mind to ensure effective continuous delivery? In his session at DevOps Summit, Mark Hydar, Head of DevOps, Ericsson TV Platforms, will share best practices and provide helpful tips for Ops teams to adopt an open line of communication with the development side of the house to ensure success between the two sides.
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM Cloud Data Services has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IBM Cloud Data Services offers a portfolio of integrated, best-of-breed cloud data services for developers focused on mobile computing and analytics use cases.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Sandy Carter, IBM General Manager Cloud Ecosystem and Developers, and a Social Business Evangelist, will keynote at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Developing software for the Internet of Things (IoT) comes with its own set of challenges. Security, privacy, and unified standards are a few key issues. In addition, each IoT product is comprised of at least three separate application components: the software embedded in the device, the backend big-data service, and the mobile application for the end user's controls. Each component is developed by a different team, using different technologies and practices, and deployed to a different stack/target - this makes the integration of these separate pipelines and the coordination of software upd...
Mobile messaging has been a popular communication channel for more than 20 years. Finnish engineer Matti Makkonen invented the idea for SMS (Short Message Service) in 1984, making his vision a reality on December 3, 1992 by sending the first message ("Happy Christmas") from a PC to a cell phone. Since then, the technology has evolved immensely, from both a technology standpoint, and in our everyday uses for it. Originally used for person-to-person (P2P) communication, i.e., Sally sends a text message to Betty – mobile messaging now offers tremendous value to businesses for customer and empl...
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
WebRTC converts the entire network into a ubiquitous communications cloud thereby connecting anytime, anywhere through any point. In his session at WebRTC Summit,, Mark Castleman, EIR at Bell Labs and Head of Future X Labs, will discuss how the transformational nature of communications is achieved through the democratizing force of WebRTC. WebRTC is doing for voice what HTML did for web content.
Nowadays, a large number of sensors and devices are connected to the network. Leading-edge IoT technologies integrate various types of sensor data to create a new value for several business decision scenarios. The transparent cloud is a model of a new IoT emergence service platform. Many service providers store and access various types of sensor data in order to create and find out new business values by integrating such data.