Hyundai is raising wages 25% by 2028 for production workers

Dive Brief:

  • By 2028, Hyundai Motor Group will raise wages 25% for production workers at its assembly plant in Alabama and an electric vehicle factory in Georgia, which is currently under construction, the company announced Monday.
  • The new wage structure begins in January. 
  • Hyundai’s decision to raise wages comes after Toyota and Honda raised hourly wages by 9% and 11%, respectively.

Dive Insight:

The United Auto Workers strike is having a ripple effect throughout the automotive industry. Three nonunion automakers — Honda, Hyundai and Toyota — have increased wages in the U.S. after the UAW secured base wage increases of 25% for its members over the next four and a half years in tentative labor agreements with the Big Three automakers.

By the beginning of 2024, Hyundai’s production team members will be making 14% more than a year ago, which includes a previous wage hike in early 2023. In addition, production workers can progress to top wages in a 30-month time frame. Hyundai declined to give further details on the pay raises.

Hyundai says it’s increasing its wage structure to remain competitive and to recruit and retain top talent. 

“We have the best team members in the industry, and we are compensating them accordingly,” said José Muñoz, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor North America. “Hyundai continuously strives to maintain competitive wage and benefits commensurate to industry peers.” 

The Alabama plant currently produces the outgoing Santa Fe, along with the Tucson, Santa Cruz, Genesis GV70 SUV and Electrified GV70. It will start producing the redesigned Santa Fe in January. The factory employs over 3,000 workers, according to Hyundai’s website.

The Hyundai Motor Group Metaplant America in Bryan County, Georgia, which is the company’s first dedicated EV factory in the U.S., is scheduled to begin production in 2025. At full capacity, the plant is expected to have 8,500 employees on-site.

Hyundai is investing a total of $12.6 billion to build the EV factory along with two battery joint venture plants in Georgia with battery makers SK On and LG Energy Solutions. In August, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp announced that Hyundai and LGES will invest an additional $2 billion in their battery cell manufacturing joint venture.

According to Hyundai, its investments in Georgia will create 12,000 direct jobs and tens of thousands of indirect jobs.