UPDATE 3-After profit hit, Hyundai Motor warns of firmer won, may make more cars overseas

jueves 24 de julio de 2014 05:23 GYT

* Q2 net profit slips nearly 7 pct, below consensus

* Won, US discounts offset solid China, domestic sales

* End of US stimulus measures to curb H2 demand growth (Add executive comments, production plan, sales data)

By Hyunjoo Jin

SEOUL, July 24 (Reuters) - South Korea's Hyundai Motor reported net profit fell the most in five quarters, hit by the local currency's strength, and said it may make more vehicles overseas as it braces for a tough second half with the won still strong.

Hyundai, the world's fifth-biggest automaker combined with affiliate Kia Motors, on Thursday reported a 2.24 trillion Korean won ($2.18 billion) net profit for the second quarter, down nearly 7 percent from a year earlier. That was below a consensus forecast of 2.33 trillion won, according to a Reuters poll of 16 analysts.

Still, Hyundai's growing overseas output helped cushion the impact of the rising won, which makes sales outside its home base less profitable. The company said it will now consider adding production capacity overseas - a departure from its previous stance and a move that could help insulate it from the strength of South Korea's currency.

"We do not have a positive outlook for the exchange rate in the second half," Chief Financial Officer Lee Won-hee said in a conference call.

"We plan to expand capacity continuously in markets where there is demand," he said, an effective reversal of previous strategy for Hyundai, which has broadly steered clear of building new factories over the past couple of years.   Continuación...