Hyundai, DaimlerChrysler begin building plant

Hyundai Motor Co and DaimlerChrysler AG broke ground for construction of their new engine plant in Hyundai's Chonju Commercial Vehicle Plant in Seoul, South Korea. The two companies in 2001 formed a new 50:50 engine joint venture named Daimler Hyundai Truck Corp.

The 34,000-square-meter Daimler Hyundai Truck plant represents an investment of US $230 million including engine development as well as plant tooling costs. It will produce DaimlerChrysler's newest 900 series diesel engines at the rate of 50,000 units annually when it becomes fully operational by 2005. Pilot production is scheduled to begin in September 2003.

More than 300 guests attended the groundbreaking including Hyundai President Dong-Jin Kim and Senior Executive Vice President Choong-Yong Kim, head of Hyundai's Commercial Vehicle Division. Representing DaimlerChrysler were President Eckhardt Cordes of the Commercial Vehicle Division and Vice-President Rudiger Grube of strategic planning.

The plant will manufacture the 900 engines in a 4.3-liter four-cylinder version as well in six-cylinder 6.4- and 7.2-liter displacements.

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