Hyundai Motor held a groundbreaking ceremony For a dedicated electrical vehicle (EV) manufacturing plant in the country’s southeastern industrial city of Ulsan, with a goal of producing 200,000 vehicles annually, starting in 2026. Hyundai will spend 2 trillion won ($1.51 billion) to build the 548,000-square-meter EV factory in Ulsan, some 300 kms southeast of Seoul. When completed, it will be Hyundai’s first domestic manufacturing plant in 29 years since its Asan plant, built in 1996. The ceremony, held at the EV plant site, a former test drive site inside Hyundai’s larger Ulsan plant, was attended by Hyundai Motor Group Executive Chair Euisun Chung and Ulsan Mayor Ki Du-kyum, reports Yonhap news agency.
According to Hyundai, the envisioned facility will be operated through the company’s innovative manufacturing platform developed by the Hyundai Motor Group Innovation Center in Singapore, the company’s smart urban mobility hub.
The platform factors in and streamlines elements involving workers’ safety, convenience and efficient operations. It utilizes an artificial intelligence-based intelligent control system and environmentally friendly, low-carbon production methods.
“The dedicated EV plant marks another beginning towards the era of electrification for the next 50 years,” Chung said in his welcome remarks at the ceremony.
Chung also pledged for Hyundai to work together with the local government to make Ulsan a “pioneering innovative mobility city,” leading the era of electrification.
Hyundai has previously announced a medium- to long-term goal of producing and selling 940,000 EV units by 2026 and 2 million units by 2030.
After the event, Chung hinted that Hyundai intends to continue investing in the EV business despite recent cost-cutting efforts among global competitors, such as GM and Ford.
“It’s an investment we’ve been making, and while there are various methods, such as cost reduction, in the broader picture, the demand for EVs will inevitably continue to increase,” Chung told reporters.
Also featured at the ceremony was a video highlighting the history of Hyundai’s Ulsan plant. In it, the late Chung Ju-yung, founder of Hyundai, whose image and voice were recreated using artificial intelligence technology, was seen praising the abilities of South Korean engineers.
“Thanks to the outstanding abilities and dedication of these individuals, I am confident that the day is not far off when Korean cars, our cars, will dominate the global market,” the late founder was portrayed as saying.