MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Hyundai is investing $388 million to build a plant dedicated to manufacturing engine heads and enhance existing operations to support the production of new models of Sonata and Elantra sedans.
The investment will create 50 jobs with an average pay of $52,000 a year, according to Gov. Kay Ivey.
It will cost about $40 million to construct the 260,000-square-foot building that will house the head machining equipment. The facility will be operational by mid-2019. Hyundai will begin hiring for the new jobs in 2019.
"Hyundai is an important member of Alabama's dynamic auto industry, and this expansion at its Montgomery manufacturing facility will power the global automaker's drive for future growth in the U.S.," Ivey said. "Hyundai's significant new investment is a strong testament to the company's confidence in its Alabama operation and in its highly skilled workforce."
"With our latest expansion, HMMA continues to show its strong commitment to the people of Montgomery and the people of Alabama," Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama President and CEO Dong Ryeol Choi said at Tuesday's announcement. "Hyundai is continuing its track record of investing in new manufacturing technologies to ensure the long-term success of our Alabama assembly plant."
In a separate announcement Thursday, Hyundai announced that it's partnering with a company called Xevo to "put your wallet on wheels."
"Right now, you can find and pay for things with your smartphone, smartwatch or computer," the company said. "With this in mind, Hyundai is developing technology that will allow customers to find and pay for coffee, gas, and parking using their car's infotainment screen. In the future, Hyundai will connect cars with popular brands using its new partner, Xevo, to bring in-vehicle payment to customers."
The services will work with Hyundai Blue Link.
"Once our owners experience placing a to-go order using their vehicle's touchscreen and seamlessly routing to the location, we know they're going to love it," said Manish Mehrotra, director, digital business planning and connected operations, Hyundai Motor America.
Xevo provides global, data-driven user experiences for the automotive industry, Hyundai said. Xevo Market launched in late 2017 and is already available in millions of vehicles from several of the world's largest automakers.
After the announcement, the city of Montgomery offered Hyundai a gift of two stones. One is white marble found in Alabama and the other is Asian black granite. The stones are meant to symbolically link Alabama and South Korea. The stones were sculpted by Montgomery native Brooks Barrow.