When did Hyundai buy Kia?

I just recently learned that Kia is actually owned by Hyundai, which came as a surprise because they always seemed to be an independent company. When did Hyundai buy Kia?

Andrew (Andy) Biro · Answered on Dec 27, 2022
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
Hyundai—or more accurately, the Hyundai Motor Group—purchased 51% of Kia shares in 1998 in an effort to keep the company afloat, as Kia Motors had filed for bankruptcy the year prior.
For the next twelve-or-so years, Hyundai technically owned the Kia brand by virtue of being the dominant shareholder. Nowadays, the Hyundai Motor Group only owns about 33% of Kia shares, making Hyundai a minority owner and putting the two automakers on more equal footing.
Of course, the two companies have always operated as though they were independent entities, which may explain the source of your confusion—due to the companies’ partnership, however, their vehicles often share the same platforms and make use of similar technologies.
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