Construction on Hyundai’s new EV production plant in Georgia is officially underway, with commercial production earmarked for the first half of 2025.
The Hyundai Motor Group Metaplant America (HMGMA) is the brand’s largest investment outside South Korea, with $5.54 billion (all figures in US dollars) already allocated by both Hyundai and its partners (up to $1 billion is expected to be pumped in by the latter). The plant is also among the biggest development projects ever to be undertaken in the state of Georgia, with “more than 8,100 jobs” expected to be created as Hyundai looks to establish a stable supply chain between HMGMA in Bryan County and its US battery / EV component suppliers.
The US remains among Hyundai’s biggest proposed markets as the Korean brand looks sell 3.23 million full EVs annually by 2030, with the Ioniq 5 and the upcoming Ioniq 6 in particular as its flagship models. This is in line with a new regulation, announced by the US government last year, that sales of zero-emission vehicles should account for at least half of an OEM carmaker’s new vehicle sales by 2030.
Ironically, further initiatives set in place by the US government have left Hyundai and its customers in particular in a bit of a hole.
First introduced as the ‘Build Back Better Act,’ the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 was signed into law by President Joe Biden in August, despite traditional bi-partisan shenanigans leading to delays as the initiative worked its way through the US Senate. As well as lowering prescription drug prices and Affordable Care Act subsidies, the $737 billion spending bill – formerly $3.5 trillion – heavily promoted cleaner energy requirements for car manufacturers.
Ironically, while EV owners are eligible to claim tax credits in the US for their electric vehicles – up to $7,500 – this only applies if the vehicle’s final assembly is done in North America. A notable hurdle for Hyundai, which produces all of its vehicles overseas. Accordingly, with production at HMGMA only scheduled to begin in 2025, new EV owners would only be able to claim their tax credits from 2026 onwards, a factor that could significantly impact Ioniq sales.