Strikes at Hyundai’s plant in South Korea took a toll on the production of the all-new 2012 Hyundai Veloster, but Automotive News reports that the automaker is now ready to proceed with deliveries of its compact hatchback. Continually plagued by labor disputes, Hyundai has endured annual strikes every summer for the past two decades up until 2008.
The latest dispute, reportedly revolving around a proposed reallocation of workers, delayed production of the car for more than two months after the Veloster plant’s utilization rate fell to 33 percent, essentially shutting down production. Despite the setbacks, the Veloster, which was unveiled at the 2011 Detroit auto show, is on track for delivery in Europe shortly, and in North America and other regions later this year.
While Hyundai continues to soar in the U.S. market especially, labor disputes remain one of the biggest limiting factors for the company’s overall growth in the world markets, according to analysts. “…Hyundai has to overcome labor issues involving subcontract workers and a new shift system (to keep solid growth),” said Lim Eun-young, an analyst at Dongbu Securities.
As a result of the union protests, Hyundai will have a limited launch in its home market, and is aiming for 18,000 Veloster sales this year. Stateside sales of the Veloster shouldn’t be as hampered, as a representative of Hyundai Motor America tells us that no delays are expected for the U.S. market launch.
Source: Automotive News (Subscription required), Hyundai Motor America