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UPDATE 1-Hyundai Sept car sales recover after strikes end

Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 2:17 AM ET

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* Hyundai global sales reach 371,743 vehicles * Hyundai ramps up output after strike ends * Production rises in U.S., China help ease tight supply SEOUL, Oct 4 (Reuters) - South Korea's Hyundai Motor Co

said global sales returned to growth, rising 3.4 percent in September from a year earlier, a s it bounced back from the end of strikes at domestic plants and benefited from production rises in the United States and China.

The figures will provide some reassurance that Hyundai has put its costliest strike ever behind it, though analysts worry about the impact on third-quarter earnings which are due late this month.

Hyundai said worldwide sales rose to 371,743 vehicles last month, the highest level since June. In contrast, sales for affiliate Kia Motors Corp were almost flat as strikes there ran until Sept. 11 while Hyundai's strikes were over in August.

Hyundai Motor's sales in August had fallen 4.6 percent, the automaker's first decline in monthly sales in more than three years, hit by the partial walkouts due to wage disputes. The South Korean plants supply about half of Hyundai's vehicles sold globally and prevented it from making 82,088 cars worth some $1.5 billion.

A new factory in China, which started production in June, allowed Hyundai to increase supply at a time when Japanese rivals cut back output in the wake of anti-Japan protests, while the automaker also added a third shift to a U.S. plant from September. ($1 = 1112.6500 Korean won)

(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

((hyunjoo.jin@thomsonreuters.com)(82-2-3704-5685)(Reuters

Messaging: hyunjoo.jin.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

Keywords: HYUNDAI SALES/

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