Kia ramps up in Georgia

Annual capacity to reach 360,000 vehicles starting in 2012

June 3, 2011
by Fleet Management staff

Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia, Inc. (KMMG), Kia Motors Corp’s vehicle production facility in the US, has begun a series of expansion projects in each of the plant’s four main shops—stamping, welding, paint and general assembly—to raise annual capacity to 360,000 vehicles starting in 2012.  The growth follows Kia Motors’ announcement at the 2011 New York International Auto Show that the Optima midsize sedan will be added to the plant’s production line.

Beginning in September 2011, the 2012 model year Optima will be built alongside the Kia Sorento CUV. In addition to the physical expansion, KMMG has completed the hiring process for nearly 1,000 new team members in preparation for the addition of a third shift—which begins later this month—bringing the total number of jobs created at the plant to more than 3,000.

“The success of the West Point, Georgia plant is the result of the dedication of our team members and the world-class quality that goes into each vehicle we build, and the increased volume and addition of new team members is further evidence of our commitment to the US and local economies,” said Byung Mo Ahn, group president and CEO of Kia Motors America and KMMG.

Representing an additional $100 million investment by Kia Motors in the $1 billion West Point facility, the projects underway at the plant include:

  • A second 4,900-tonne transfer press is being installed in the stamping shop.
  • Additional robots are being added to the welding shop.
  • The size of the paint shop is being increased to accommodate the complexities involved with producing a third model.
  • The production line is being extended within the existing facilities and new equipment will be installed inside the general assembly shop.
  • The railroad spur is being expanded to efficiently handle the additional volume.