Hyundai plans to increase employee wages in the U.S., following in the footsteps of Honda and Toyota as non-unionized automakers respond to the United Auto Workers strike.
The South Korean automaker announced Monday it would boost hourly pay by 25% over the next four years. Currently, the company operates only one facility in the U.S., located in Alabama, which employs roughly 4,000 team members. However, another Hyundai facility is under construction in Georiga, where future workers are expected to receive the same wage increases as their colleagues across state lines.
In a statement, Hyundai explained that its decision to boost pay would help the company “remain competitive and….recruit and retain top talent” in the U.S. Shortly after the end of the United Auto Workers strike, which won record-breaking raises for employees across Detroit-Three factories, Toyota similarly announced it would also implement wage hikes to remain competitive with its peers in North America. Honda followed suit roughly one week later. Although the pay increases included in the UAW’s contracts boost wages by 25%, combined with improved benefits packages and cost-of-living adjustments, the effective increase is actually closer to 33%. So far, the wage hikes promised at Honda, Toyota, and Hyundai remain below this rate.
United Auto Workers chief Shawn Fain has promised to focus on non-unionized automakers in the aftermath of its strike against the Detroit-Three. “One of our biggest goals coming out of this historic contract victory is to organize like we’ve never organized before,” he commented during a recent video livestream. “When we return to the bargaining table in 2028, it won’t just be with the Big Three, but with the Big Five or Big Six.” The union faces an uphill battle if it hopes to attract membership from employers such as Honda, Toyota, and Hyundai. Many of the facilities operated by the three brands are located in the southern U.S., where right-to-work laws, rules exempting employees from paying union dues, are broadly enforced.