It has been found that the number of imported electric and hybrid electric vehicles sold in the Korean market last year exceeded 10,000 for the first time in history.
The Korea Automobile Importers & Distributors Association announced on January 24 that the specific number increased from 7,922 to 10,253 between 2014 and 2015. Last year, diesel vehicles accounted for 68.85% of the total sales volume of the imported car market at 243,900, followed by gasoline vehicles (26.95%) and the green cars (4.2%).
Toyota and Lexus sold 8,805 hybrid vehicles last year to take up 85.8% of the market segment. The sales volumes of the Lexus ES300h and the Toyota Prius amounted to 5,006 and 1,787, respectively. Ford sold 301 Lincoln MKZ Hybrids while Infiniti sold 283 Q50S Hybrids.
In the electric vehicle segment, the sales volume of the BMW i3 increased 115.9% from a year ago to 367 and that of the Nissan Leaf showed a growth of 525% to 100.
Foreign automakers are planning to release a large number of hybrid cars in Korea this year in the wake of the recent Volkswagen scandal although the low international oil prices are likely to hinder the growth of the sales of green cars. At the same time, they are stepping up their investment in this market segment as tighter exhaust emission regulations are being put into effect in various countries around the world.