Hyundai may be looking to ride the light truck wave.Hyundai could be planning a major changeover for its lone United States production plant to battle slumping passenger car sales, a new report finds.Citing unnamed officials, the Seoul Economic Daily claimed on Friday that Hyundai is considering a plan to produce its Tucson and Kona crossovers, as well as an upcoming pickup truck model, at the company's Alabama production facility by 2021. The Alabama plant currently builds the slow-selling Sonata and Elantra sedans, along with the popular Santa Fe crossover.
The report didn't say if those new vehicles would displace the Sonata and Elantra in Alabama, but the alleged plan calls for output at the facility to grow from about 380,000 vehicles annually to 450,000 units.
In a statement, Hyundai told Reuters that it hasn't made any decisions about future vehicle production in the United States.
Although Hyundai is denying the report, a shift to more crossovers and light trucks would make sense. Both segments are booming in the U.S., with the sedan market showing serious signs of regression. Building those types of vehicles in Alabama would give a boost to Hyundai's profitability.