Hyundai Motor America (HMA) makes, sales, and services the Elantra, Sonata, and other Hyundai vehicles for the US market. Its Hyundai Motor Manufacturing facility, one of the most advanced in North America, is responsible for producing more than half of the Hyundai cars sold in the US. The company also operates engineering and design and research facilities. HMA distributes Hyundai vehicles nationwide, which are sold and serviced through a network of more than 800 dealerships. The company represents nearly 20% of its South Korean parent's sales.
HMA has a manufacturing facility in Montgomery, Alabama; an engineering facility in Superior Township, Michigan; and a design and research facility in Irvine, California.
In order to win greater market share in the midsize sedan segment against the likes of the Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Nissan Altima, Toyota Camry, and VW Jetta, the company has been working to give its Sonata a more nipped and tucked look. Its design center added more curves to the model, its head and tail lamps were designed to be reminiscent of jewelry cases, and its chrome grill was improved with special metal surfacing for a more refined look.
As US regulations for energy conservation and efficiency get tighter, automakers are looking to incorporate additional design features that will reduce both the size and weight and emissions of their vehicles. Hyundai is the first to publicly announce its plans to achieve a targeted 10% weight reduction across its vehicle line by 2015. It is working on a concept car known as the Blue-Will, an all-electric vehicle built using lighter-weight carbon fiber and engineered plastics. It will run on a lithium polymer battery built by Korean-based LG Chem. Such development is intended to help HMA become the #1 fuel-efficient carmaker in North America.