The Challenge For Automotive Leadership

Right now the race for the world’s automotive market dominance has two standout challengers that refuse to be ignored.

Volkswagen — with it’s portfolio of brands including Porsche, Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini, Bugatti, SEAT and Skoda — is the consummate global car company, with divisions flying the flags of Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Czech Republic and Sweden.

With its number two finish in overall 2011 vehicle sales worldwide after General Motors, it will be interesting to see if Volkswagen can rebuff a Toyota attempt to battle back from number three!

Though they resist the public co-branding the reality of the Hyundai-Kia juggernaut from South Korea is undeniable. KIA posted a 36.3 percent overall sales gain last year and Hyundai was up 20 percent.

For KIA, the sexy Optima sport sedan, feature-packed Sorento small SUV and the big personality Soul urban-cruiser are a win, place and show combo.

For Hyundai the premium value Genesis line, solidly confident Sonata sedans, the rugged Sante Fe small SUV and the jaunty Veloster, are attracting new buyers across all economic and age strata.

Most importantly for Hyundai-Kia, an industry leading 10 year, 100,000 mile warranty, has been key to building consumer confidence in these former low budget brands.