* 49-year-old Chung appointed as Hyundai Motor Group
* Hyundai Motor latest S.Korean chaebol to undergo
* Chung pushes for autonomous cars, EVs, flying cars
SEOUL, Oct 14 (Reuters) - Hyundai Motor Group appointed
Euisun Chung as group chairman on Wednesday, cementing his
succession from his octogenarian father in a move likely to give
impetus to the world's fifth-largest automaker's push into
electric vehicles and flying cars.
In the first generational handover at the South Korean
automobile giant in 20 years, Chung, 49, said he hoped to lead
change at South Korea's second-biggest conglomerate as it
battles to stay ahead of the pack in a time of rapid
technological innovation in the global auto industry.
"Carrying on their bold and innovative legacies, I feel
privileged, yet also a sense of great responsibility for opening
a new chapter of Hyundai Motor Group," Chung said in his
inauguration speech to employees.
Chung identified autonomous driving, electrification,
hydrogen fuel cell, robotics and Urban Air Mobility (UAM) -
industry jargon for flying cars - as his initiatives for the
Hyundai Motor shares were trading up 0.3% after rising as
much as 2.5% after the appointment, while the wider market
was down 0.6%. Kia Motors and Hyundai Mobis
fell 1.6% and 1.1%, respectively.
Hyundai Motor Group earlier on Wednesday said Chung had been
promoted to chairman from executive vice chairman, replacing his
father, Mong-Koo Chung, who was made honorary chairman.
Key affiliates of Hyundai Motor Group, including Hyundai
Motor, endorsed his inauguration unanimously.
The appointment makes Chung the latest third-generation
leader to take over one of South Korea's family-led
conglomerates, which have been credited with lifting the
war-stricken country out of poverty since the 1950s.
His father took the wheels of the group in 2000 and
transformed the company, once mocked for poor vehicle quality,
into the world's No.5 automaker.
The 82-year-old has been stepping back from frontline
operations in recent years, and gave up his board seat in
Hyundai Motor earlier this year.
Euisun Chung has played an increasingly visible leadership
role since September 2018 when he was promoted to executive vice
Hyundai Motor Group invested $1.6 billion in a self-driving
technology joint venture with U.S. Aptiv, forged a
partnership with Uber on electric air taxis and
invested in ride-hailing firm Grab.
In July Chung set a goal to win more than 10% of the global
market for battery EVs by 2025.
Legacy automakers with similar ambitions face a growing
threat from Tesla Inc, which has become the most
valuable automaker. Hyundai recently said it plans to recall its
top-selling EVs because of battery fire risks.
Euisun Chung does not have a major stake in Hyundai Mobis
, an affiliate seen as key to control of the group,
and is expected to renew the push for ownership restructuring to
cement his influence after a previous attempt in 2018 met
Chung is credited with steering the turnaround of Kia Motors
by hiring former Audi designer Peter Schreyer. As vice chairman
of Hyundai Motor, he also launched the luxury brand Genesis in
(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin and Joyce Lee; Editing by Stephen