Hyundai Creates New State Of Confusion Over Genesis Of Luxury Brand

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt

Hyundai may really, honestly launch its own luxury brand. In a way, at least, perhaps

For years, Hyundai has been going back and forth over on question: Luxury brand or not? Imitate Infiniti? Do it like Lexus? A la Acura? This conundrum produced millions of Google hits, but otherwise led to nothing. Hyundai may finally cave in and do it. Hyundai’s U.S. sales chief Dave Zuchowski told Automotive News [sub] that such a move could be in the offing. Why? Customers are well ahead of Hyundai and already created a new brand called “Genesis.”

Said Zuchowski:

“There’s a conversation going on within the company that says, ‘Does having the Hyundai badge on the premium vehicles sell more vehicles, or does it restrict us from selling more vehicles?'”

Depending on which way this discussion goes, Hyundai’s “H” badge would be replaced by a Genesis badge on rear-wheel-drive premium vehicles, including the Equus, Genesis sedan and Genesis Coupe. The cars would be branded as Genesis with an alphanumeric naming system.

Zuchowski told AN that many Genesis buyers already replace the Hyundai badge with a winged Genesis badge. It’s a dealer-installed option that costs extra. For the frugal, rebadging how-tos have been on YouTube since 2009. Remember: Tailgate version, not hood version!”

No decision has been made, says AN, and no timetable has been set. If a Genesis brand is born, the cars would be sold in Hyundai dealerships, not through a separate dealership network.

Sure, this is how it always starts …

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  • Bryce Bryce on Feb 06, 2012

    Genesis as a brand may work Acura and Lexus cars only exist as badges on ordinary Hondas and Toyotas we get them with other names but numeric naming is stupid like Lincolns MK crap and BMWs M for sucked in

  • Bd2 Bd2 on Feb 06, 2012

    A subbrand would be the smart move by Hyundai. This way they can keep the costs of their luxury offerings down; kind of like offering RWD luxury models at the price of FWD Acura models (if not a bit higher, esp. for the Equus). Lexus and Infiniti have tried to compete against Mercedes and BMW on price with the GS and M and both have been a failure (the LS sells well b/c it severely undercuts the Germans in price). Probably should do a separate showroom and waiting room for the luxury subbrand, but no need to do a separate service bay (after all SMART cars are serviced alongside Mercedes vehicles).

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