Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea
Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea
  • May 31, 2023

In last century, automotive industry originated in Europe and flourished in North America. Through efforts of Japan and South Korea, Asia also became backbone of global automotive industry and created profitable Toyota Company. giant. However, in retrospect, none of Japanese and Korean auto companies escaped standards of imitationism, reverse research and development, design imitation, parts and component localization, independent research and development.

It can be seen that late development is not terrible, reverse research and development is not terrible, design imitation is also not terrible, as long as details and independent research and development can keep pace, this is logic of development. Accordingly, my country's independent brand development has jumped from 1.0 to n.0 era, strong and vibrant, stable and powerful. But in this context, it is extremely vain and irresponsible to blindly glorify joint ventures or Korean cars, and blindly exaggerate existing energy of independent brands.

Why do we overtake on a corner

Over past five years, my country's new energy industry has grown rapidly, especially over past three years, almost doubling or even several times every year. The country has invested a lot of effort and material resources in development of new energy. We must know that fuel-powered vehicles in conventional sense have more than tens of thousands of high-quality components, which makes fuel-powered vehicles a very precise and integrated mechanical body.

Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea

Due to late start of development of automobile industry in my country, many main parts and components are still limited to foreign countries, including production and manufacture of main parts, supply of raw materials, etc. In recent years, so-called chips have only become more sophisticated . , The embodiment of frontierization, given factors such as patents, we call them various technical barriers that cannot be attacked directly. For example, were it not for Honda's development of i-mmd system, bypassing Toyota's hybrid patent and giving us inspiration and excitement, consequences can be imagined.

But trams running on new energy sources don't have to think so much. The use of a small motor, a set of power batteries and a set of electrical control technologies (commonly known as three electrics) to replace a complex internal combustion engine and gearbox, bypassing proudest part of western world, obviously maximizes strengths. and avoid effect of weakness. As old saying goes, king catches thief first, but there is no king on this track, isn't that fun?

Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea

Thus, we have made great strides in launching new energy products in a short period of time. As market share of trams increases, new forces and traditional independent brands will be launched like dumplings, which really put pressure on foreign traditional cars. companies.

After all, it is possible to build on strengths and avoid weaknesses in short term. This avoids problems with research and development and supply of basic accessories, but new power models still do not have an advantage in suspension adjustment and power adjustment. Everything would be fine, but soft and stiff suspension in dynamic conditions will cause discomfort to many. I believe friends reading this article will feel same way if you have tried driving Volkswagen MEB platform or GM electric products.

It can be seen that overtaking on corners avoided some of them, but not all.

What is modern Kia Mobis like?

About Mobis, there are comments on Internet that R&D capabilities of all domestic manufacturers taken together cannot touch Mobis. Personally, I think this is a one-sided and extreme statement, but it is still possible to touch ankle to shin. After all, we have transmission suppliers such as Wanliyang and Qingshan, but it is an indisputable fact that we cannot make more advanced transmissions.

Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea

Hyundai Mobis was established in 1977. It is a product of rapid development of Korean automobile industry under leadership of research and development capabilities of three major automotive components. In top ten are all famous ones such as Bosch, ZF, Magna, Valeo, Cummins, Aisin, Toyota Denso, etc., and Mobis ranks even higher than Valeo ahead.

Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea

The scope of Mobis covers almost all electronic devices used in cars. It can produce a complete set of L2-level automatic driving systems, as well as various engines for hybrid and pure electric vehicles. As for other electronic components, Mobis can produce electronic brake boosters, air suspensions with adjustable height, softness and stiffness, and even has its own hydrogen engine production line.

In terms of general spare parts, MOBIS has production technology of car's central control screen, multimedia screen, audio amplifier and HUD, as well as large-scale production capacity of small parts penetrating parts.

At 2020 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Mobis showcased Internet of Vehicles, autonomous driving, hydrogen fuel cell technology, etc., which really showed off their capabilities. They all research and develop technology, but Mobis can reach heights beyond our reach with its own power. In other words, Mobis has a very strong technical background, as long as it develops, Korean auto industry will always remain in first echelon of world in terms of technology.

Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea

It is this aftermarket company that dominates Hyundai Group's automotive business, with latter's automotive business accounting for more than 50% of total, placing them both in top 500 in world. To sum it up in one sentence, Mobis can do everything we can, but without any "extra" cost.

World-class Korean car performance

What is global sales of Korean cars supported by Mobis?

Data show that Hyundai Group sold 6.87 million vehicles worldwide last year. Even though its auto business in China has halved year on year, company will still achieve global growth of 5% in 2021, a testament to its strength overseas.

Understand history of South Korea's auto industry (3) Don't underestimate power of South Korea

Don't be surprised, there are more amazing ones. In terms of global sales, Hyundai Motor Group ranks fourth behind Toyota, Volkswagen and Renault Nissan, followed by GM, Stellantis (an alliance of PSA and FCA), Honda, Ford, Suzuki and BMW.

Also, don't just look at data, you should be aware that besides Stellantis, other giants on list rely on Chinese market to drive global sales, while Hyundai Group and Stellantis are exceptions, showing gold content for their 6.87 million digits.


At this point, I assume you already know extent of automotive industry in my country. First, we started late, but we are catching up; second, to achieve catching up, new energy is an important track that can directly reverse advantages of great powers; there is still a long way to go.