Hyundai Motor Co. raised its 2011 U.S. sales forecast to 624,000 units, representing a 16 percent gain from last year, the Korean automaker said today.
Last year, the Hyundai brand's U.S. sales rose 24 percent to a record 538,228. Sales through May are up 29 percent to 263,588 vehicles.
Reuters reported Wednesday that Kia Motors Corp. also hiked its 2011 U.S. sales forecast to 433,000 units. That would be a 21.5 percent increase from the 356,268 vehicles the brand sold in the United States last year. Through May, Kia's sales are up 45 percent to 200,060 units from the year-ago period.
In a statement, Hyundai credited robust demand for current and upcoming vehicles for the higher sales target. Recent vehicle debuts include the redesigned Elantra compact, the 2012 Accent subcompact and a freshened 2012 Genesis luxury sedan.
The new 2012 Veloster sports coupe and an updated Equus full-sized luxury car will debut by year end.
In January, Hyundai Motor America said production constraints would limit U.S. sales to around 600,000.
Mike O'Brien, Hyundai Motor America's vice president of product planning, said earlier this month that Hyundai's 2011 U.S. sales would surpass its January estimate, but did not set a specific forecast.
O'Brien said sales of the 2012 Accent are expected to outperform earlier internal forecasts. Hyundai also has boosted production of the Sonata mid-sized sedan and Elantra at its Montgomery, Ala., assembly plant.
In addition, Hyundai is receiving more Korean-built Elantras for the U.S. market, O'Brien said.
Through May, Hyundai-Kia sales totaled 463,648, up 35 percent from the first five months of 2010, representing a combined 8.8 percent share of the U.S. market.