Genesis X Convertible Concept Drops Its Top in L.A.
Despite being chided for reliability issues of late, Hyundai Motor Group has been launching some of the most interesting designs the industry has had to offer – with the Genesis brand unveiling some of the most tasteful and novel concepts we’ve seen in years. Chalk up another one with the X Convertible Concept that was unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show this week.
With strong influences from the previous X Coupe and Speedium concepts, the X Convertible isn’t breaking much ground visually. But the automaker has managed to integrate the fundamentals of good automotive design with enough modern features for it not to feel like a throwback vehicle. It’s almost like Genesis’ designers actually asked themselves what has drawn people to specific models historically and which shapes have stood the test of time before putting pen to paper. Though probably not literally because the odds of it having been designed anywhere other than on a computer screen are pretty slim.
Regardless, Genesis managed to avoid the pitfalls of grabbing onto whatever the latest trends were in an effort to make it look ultra-modern while also adhering to its own unique design language. Even if you don’t particularly like the flowing lightbars that frame what would have been a grille were this not an electric vehicle, it all just kind of comes together in a strikingly attractive package. Proportions are good and the more traditional shape – aided by carefully placed creases and bulges – helps fool you into thinking this might actually be something that’ll go on sale in a few years.
It probably won’t, however.
Genesis didn’t share any technical details about the X Convertible. It just confirmed that it uses the same unspecified all-electric powertrain and platform as the previous X concepts. But if it’s not building those models, there’s probably not going to be a standalone variant with a retractable hardtop. The likely best-case scenario is that we might see certain aspects of the vehicle make their way into subsequent products.
The cockpit-style cabin would be nice to have on any potent grand touring models Genesis is considering (if they added physical buttons) and the exterior of the drop-top X concept is a guaranteed winner. Even the absolutely unnecessary transparent moonroof that has been embedded into the retractable hardtop seems like something you could upsell to someone who had cash to burn. There’s a wealth of interesting ideas here that could be adapted for production vehicles, even if most of them already existed on Genesis’ other X coupes. But the appetite has to be there and Genesis’ sales leaders are all SUVs at present.
That’s not to say that elements of the X cars couldn’t be tweaked to work on vehicles like the GV80, especially considering there’s already some design overlap. It’s just that it comes together a little better on the two-door concepts – which is likely why Genesis has been using them to flaunt its styling prowess. Perhaps we’ll see the brand’s tragically underappreciated sedans stick around for a while and embrace the more athletic shape of the X cars.
[Images: Hyundai Motor Group]
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