Hyundai Ponders the Addition of a Luxury Brand
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The brand would include the current Genesis Sedan and Coupe along with the full-size luxury sedan Equus, which will go on sale this month in the US, a four door sports car and a crossover SUV. Hyundai has increased its US market share by 50% in the last two years and wants to seize the opportunity to boost its image even further.
Three branding scenarios are being taken into consideration at the moment. The first and most likely to become reality is the creation of a Genesis brand that would share dealerships with Hyundai, but with dedicated personnel. The other scenarios are to keep premium cars badged as Hyundais or launch the brand into separate dealerships, similar to Acura or Lexus.
"One of the keys to this plan is how well the Equus does," said John Krafcik, the president of Hyundai Motor America. "We don't need to make a decision for some time"
However, the company would take some risks making a bold move like spinning off the brand. Additionally, it would cost millions of dollars to create a new dealership network for the brand, requiring the company to obtain about $6,000 more revenue per each car sold by these stores.
Hyundai dealers, on the other hand, are excited to hear about the creation of a Genesis brand and believe it would help increase sales.
"The dealers are excited about the Equus, and it being the lynch pin for this Genesis brand," said Scott Fink, who owns two Hyundai dealerships in Tampa, Florida. "We feel like we can do what others have been unable to do. We think we can sell a luxury brand within the house of the mainstream brand."
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