* Kia Q1 consolidated net profit 953 bln won vs 499 bln won
* Kia car sales rise double-digit in China, U.S. and Korea
* S.Korean carmakers stand to gain most from Japan quake;
* Kia shares up 1 pct in a wider market that was up 0.17 pct
(Add Kia comments, background, share price)
SEOUL, April 29 Kia Motors , South
Korea's No.2 automaker, looks set for another strong quarter
after posting a 91 percent jump in its net profit for the
January to March period, powered by strong sales of new models
and problems at its Japanese rivals.
South Korean carmakers Hyundai Motor and
affiliate Kia, which together rank fifth in global car sales,
have been little affected by Japan's quake because they use few
Japanese components, and stand to gain market share, analysts
On Thursday, Hyundai Motor reported a 47 percent jump in its
net profit, helped by a popular line-up of new models which have
been selling strongly in top markets such as China and the
United States. The earnings drove its shares 7 percent higher to
a record-high. [ID:nL3E7FS07C] [ID:nL3E7FS0QK]
In contrast, Japan's Honda Motor Co reported a 52
percent fall in quarterly operating profit and refrained from
providing an outlook for the new business year due to the impact
of last month's massive earthquake.[ID:nL3E7FR1DM]
Honda, Japan's No. 3 automaker, says that it would take
until the end of the year before production returned to normal,
echoing recent comments from Toyota Motor .
Kia Motors reported a 91 percent jump in quarterly net
profit, driven by double-digit sales growth in the United
States, China and South Korea.
Kia said its new models such as the Optima sedan, Sportage R
SUV and Picanto subcompact, along with its improved brand image,
helped global sales jump 30 percent to 619,089 units in the
first quarter from a year earlier.
Kia reported a 953.2 billion won ($888 million)
net profit for January-March, compared with 498.5 billion
won a year ago.
From this year, Kia has started to report earnings on a
consolidated basis to reflect earnings of its affiliates
including financial operations under new accounting rules, and
there were no consensus guidelines for the consolidated results.
Kia's operating profit jumped 90 percent to 839.9 billion
won in the first quarter from a year earlier, while its sales
climbed 37 percent to 10.66 trillion won.
Kia shares were up 1 percent in a wider market that was up
0.17 percent as of 0036 GMT.
Shares in Kia have rallied in the past month, jumping 16
percent versus the broader market's 7 percent gain.
($1 = 1073.400 Korean Won)
(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by David Chance)