HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA – With nearly five months of sales under its belt, Hyundai feels confident in hitting the 760,000-unit annual target it set for the U.S. in January.

“We’re still on schedule right now,” Hyundai Motor America CEO Dave Zuchowski tells WardsAuto in an interview here during a ’16 Sonata Hybrid media preview.

Hyundai sales through April were up 6.2% to 240,038 units, ahead of the 5% increase Hyundai is looking for this calendar year.

Despite the brand’s good performance through April, Zuchowski admits some disappointment Hyundai hasn’t been able to grow light-truck sales as much as its competitors, resulting in an overall flat market share for the brand.

“We’re up 6% in cars in a segment that’s down a little bit, (but) we’re up 6% in trucks in a segment that’s up almost 11%,” he says.

Hyundai’s U.S. market share through April was 4.5%, compared with 4.4% year-ago.

While light trucks made up 21% of Hyundai’s 68,009 April sales, the sector accounted for 55.3% of the 1.45 million light vehicles sold in the U.S. in April, a record for the month.

“With us (having) limited capacity of trucks and the truck market representing 56% of everything that’s sold, we can hit our number and still potentially lose share just because of the influence of the truck market,” Zuchowski says.

WardsAuto earlier reported on the likelihood of Hyundai growing its 2-model U.S. light-truck lineup to four, by introducing a production version of the Santa Cruz compact-crossover pickup and a new B-segment CUV.

Getting sufficient inventories of Hyundai’s current light trucks, the Tucson and Santa Fe CUVs, also has been a focal point for the brand.

Hyundai this summer will introduce a new generation of the Tucson, which Zuchowski says will somewhat rectify that model’s inventory issue.

HMA has confirmation from parent Hyundai Motor that 65,000 Tucsons will arrive in the U.S. this year from the vehicle's Ulsan, South Korea manufacturing plant, up from about 40,000 last year.

While that is shy of the 90,000 HMA would have liked, Zuchowski expects 90,000 Tucsons to be imported next year thanks to a full year of production of the third-generation compact CUV.

“We’ll be in good shape,” he says.

Hyundai announced last Friday it would add 50,000 units of capacity for the Tucson on another line in Ulsan currently building the Elantra compact car.

Getting more than 65,000 Tucsons for the U.S. this year is possible if upcoming contract negotiations with Hyundai’s Korean unions work in the automaker’s favor.

Zuchowski says increasing line speed for CUVs and reducing line speed for less-in-demand cars and hybrids is desired.

Meanwhile, Hyundai also is set to launch a new generation of the Elantra compact car later this year in the U.S.

Zuchowski says the 7.1% increase in sales through April of the current-generation C-car can be credited to higher incentive levels.

“The product aged – it still looks beautiful, but it aged,” he says. “And it got to the point where it was one of the higher transaction prices in the segment and we lost a lot of share.

“So we got more aggressive on incentives and we want to make sure we cleared the decks of the old model before the new model came out,” he says, noting Elantra inventory is in good shape.

WardsAuto data shows there was an average 45-days’ supply of Elantras at the end of April, down from 66 days year-ago.

cschweinsberg@wardsauto.com