Hyundai’s newly announced Genesis luxury brand (not to be confused with the Genesis coupe and sedan) has some grand plans, according to the Korean automaker’s U.S. chief.
Hyundai Motor America CEO Dave Zuchowski has confirmed its Genesis sub-brand is working on a compact sport sedan to wage battle against German’s core luxury players: Audi’s A4, BMW’s 3 Series, and Mercedes-Benz’s C-Class. This news helps clarify Hyundai’s vision for its Genesis brand: to elevate the manufacturer to the realm that just decades ago Japanese automakers like Lexus struggled to infiltrate.
In addition to the 3 Series sedan rival, Zuchowski suggested that a crossover is on the way. This isn’t much of a surprise since its slated rivals are throwing themselves full-force into all manor of crossover designs. For Genesis to effectively compete, it will need at least a pair of crossover body styles to lure shoppers.
For an indication of the design direction Genesis plans to take, Hyundai revealed the Vision G Coupe Concept ahead of this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Its striking design, inside and out earned praise and we’ll likely see several styling cues make their way into Genesis’s first planned model: the G90 sedan. Set to replace the Hyundai Equus, the G90 will be a full-size luxury model serving as the brand’s flagship.
Six models are presently in the works, including a replacement for the Genesis sedan (at least in part because its name is a bit confusing) and its coupe derivative. Add the smaller sedan and its crossover counterpart to the mix and there’s only one other spot on the roster to be filled.
Unlike Nissan/Infiniti and Toyota/Lexus, Hyundai doesn’t have immediate plans to add Genesis-specific showrooms or even force Hyundai dealers to sell Genesis models. Zuchowski stated that he believes dealerships will naturally want to sell Genesis models as more are offered and consumer demand grows.
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