Sales of eco-friendly cars in Korea jumped 31.2 percent on-year in the first six months of this year on the back of the introduction of new models, industry data showed on August 19.
A total of 53,778 eco-friendly vehicles, such as hybrid cars and electric vehicles, were sold in Korea in the January-June period, accounting for 7 percent of total auto sales, according to the data.
The total number of environmentally friendly cars sold more than tripled in four years from 28,807 in 2013 to 97,813 in 2017.
Industry watchers forecast the tally to surpass the 100,000 mark this year.
The proportion of eco-friendly cars among all auto sales also grew from 2.2 percent in 2013 to 6.4 percent last year, according to the data.
South Korea’s best-selling eco-friendly car in the first half of this year was No. 1 carmaker Hyundai Motor’s Grandeur Hybrid with 12,029 units sold.
Hyundai Motor recently decided to stop production of diesel versions of four car models to meet global preferences, which have been moving towards eco-friendly vehicles amid rising oil prices and environmental regulations.
Industry watchers attributed the green cars’ brisk growth to the increase in the number of new models rolled out by automakers.
The government has also committed to encouraging more people to drive eco-friendly vehicles as part of efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions and generate new growth momentum for its auto industry.
By Ahn Sung-mi and news wires (email@example.com