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Hyundai Wia Shuts down Engine Plant as Car Exports Plummet due to COVID-19
Producer of Kia's Morning and Ray Stops Operation
Hyundai Wia Shuts down Engine Plant as Car Exports Plummet due to COVID-19
  • By Michael Herh
  • April 7, 2020, 12:16
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Hyundai Wia, a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Co., has temporarily suspended the operation of its plant in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province, due to the spread of the new coronavirus.

Hyundai Wia announced on April 6 that the plant will be closed down for four days from April 6 to 9. The plant mainly produces engines for the Morning and the Ray of Kia Motors.

Hyundai Wia had to shut down the plant as Donghee Auto, which produces the two compact models for Kia Motors using its engines, has closed its factory. “The Morning and the Ray are mainly sold in the European market, but the export route was blocked in the aftermath of the COVID-19 outbreak,” a Hyundai Wia official said. “As Donghee Auto shut down its factory, we had no choice but to follow suit.”

The Korean automotive industry is concerned about a second wave of impact from the virus spread. The first shock passed in February. At the time, domestic automakers closed their factories in succession due to disruptions in parts supply from China. The second shock is likely to become a demand cliff. If there is no demand even after production normalization, car inventory will only grow.