Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, the first manufacturing site in North America for Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, Korea, had the official grand opening of its facility in West Point, Georgia on Friday. The plant, capable of producing 300,000 cars annually, has been making the all-new 2011 Kia Sorento CUV since Nov. 16, 2009. The 2011 Kia Sorento which went on sale in the U.S. in January selling 7,398 units in its first month was Kia's best-selling vehicle in January.
The ceremony was attended by approximately 500 VIPs from Korea and the U.S., including Chairman of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group Mong-Koo Chung; Group President and CEO of KMMG and Kia Motors America (KMA) Byung-Mo Ahn; Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue; and a number of other high-ranking Korean government and State of Georgia officials.
Representing a $1 billion investment by Kia Motors Corporation, the new 2.2 million-square-foot automobile manufacturing plant is situated on more than 2,200 acres of land consisting of four main shops: stamping, welding, paint and assembly. The site also includes a transmission shop, module shop and a two-mile test track where every vehicle produced by KMMG will be thoroughly tested. KMMG's general assembly area is outfitted with more than a half mile of height-adjustable conveyors to achieve the most favorable installation position for each team member and reduce physical fatigue. It is outfitted with wood flooring, which provides a more comfortable and forgiving work environment for team members. KMMG currently employs more than 1,200 team members and is expected to nearly double that number by the end of the year, while onsite and nearby suppliers will create up to 7,500 additional jobs in the region.