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Hyundai Group slips amid shift to big SUVs, crossovers

Hyundai Motor Group reported a 3.8 percent decline in U.S. sales for May, driven by a significant decline at the Hyundai unit.

Hyundai Motor America said its sales dipped 10 percent to 63,610 vehicles last month. Kia Motors America reported an increase of 3.9 percent with 62,433 vehicles sold, making May the company’s best sales month ever.

Hyundai is hurting with its sedan-heavy lineup as consumers gravitate toward SUVs and crossovers.

“May proved to be a bit difficult for us as it appears more customers were out looking for big trucks and SUVs than cars,” Bob Pradzinski, vice president of national sales at Huyndai Motor America, said in a statement today.

Most of Hyundai’s sedans struggled in May, with the Sonata down 12 percent to 18,018 deliveries and the Azera down 35 percent to 432 deliveries. The Elantra managed to post an increase, however, up 7.2 percent with 23,432 deliveries.

Kia’s increase was driven by its new monthlong promotion in lieu of the traditional Memorial Day sale, the automaker said in a statement.

“Record-setting results show it clearly resonated with consumers,” said Michael Sprague, COO of Kia Motors America.

As consumer interest in cars cools, Kia saw a 2.9 percent dip in sales of the Optima, with 16,349 deliveries in May. CUVs were more successful for Kia, with sales rising for the Sorento by 1.8 percent and Sportage by 12 percent.

You can reach Nora Naughton at nnaughton@crain.com -- Follow Nora on Twitter: https://twitter.com/NoraNaughton

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