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Kia’s 1st European plant is ready for trial production


  • Construction of all-new Kia plant in Slovakia is finished
  • First all-new cars off the production line in Zilina during late-2006

The construction of Kia Motors’s all-new car manufacturing facility nearby the town of Zilina in Slovakia, is finished. The Korean corporation’s first facility in Europe represents an investment of around €1 billion and will start production of an all-new Kia model this year, with the first cars rolling off the final assembly line in late-2006.

Kia finished installation of production technologies and the new plant is ready for the trial production which will be ongoing in forthcoming months. During the trial period, all production technologies, equipment and employees will be synchronized to get prepared for the mass production. Kia plans to start the mass production of the ED model in late-2006, therefore this year is considered as one of the most important pillars of the company’s history.

“We have built the new plant in Zilina by implementing all our know-how. Our production strategy is based on three keystones – quality, flexibility and productivity. With the best quality, the most efficient flexibility and productivity we can deliver competitive products to the European market and achieve the highest satisfaction for our customers,“ commented Mr In-Kyu Bae, the President and CEO of Kia Motors Slovakia.

“To ensure stable product quality, we are introducing the state-of-the-art technology such as body turnover rotation dipping system for painting and 100 % automation ratio for welding with 310 robots in the body shop. I believe that with our well trained employees we can establish competitive production operation to bring in top class high quality products. The new ED model, which will be produced at our plant in Zilina, is specially designed to meet taste of European customers and we are confident that this new model will become the new and strong challenger in the European markets ,” concluded Mr Bae.

Kia is a very attractive company to work for. Kia has already hired over 1,200 employees. Recruitment for the first shift finished at the beginning of April this year and hiring of employees for the second shift is starting in June. By 2009, KMS will employ up to 3,000 people and will run a three shifts operation. Kia’s plant jobs form just part of 10,000 jobs being created either directly or indirectly in the region as more than 10 parts and components manufacturers will build their own plants in Slovakia to supply the demands of the Kia facility.

Kia’s intention is that Zilina plant will also become a leading example of how to ‘best balance’ manufacturing and environmental responsibility. New plant will use the best available technologies to protect the environment. In all parts of the paint shop, environmental measures will be implemented to reduce the quantity of emissions, waste water and waste. Kia will operate fully automated painting facilities and use water-based paints. Kia also decided not to build its own heat energy source for the paint shop, but to use steam from the existing heat energy plant of Zilina city. The decision will allow energy plant to operate more efficiently and thus contribute to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption.

The ultimate capacity of Kia’s plant in Zilina is 300,000 units per year. Output will be divided between C-segment cars and small SUVs. Kia will be the only automotive manufacturer to produce engines in Slovakia. Kia will produce gasoline and diesel engines with total capacity of 300,000 units per year. The development of the new Zilina facility together with its new headquarters and design centre in central Frankfurt, confirm Kia’s commitment to Europe and its determination to become one of the top global automotive producers by 2010.

Press Contact

Dusan Dvorak
Tel.: +421 41 515 1512

Kia Motors Slovakia, s.r.o.
P.O.Box 2
013 01 Teplicka nad Vahom