Please Genesis, make it happen.
Rumors from Australian outlet Drive could hint at a potential Mercedes-Benz G-Class rival from South Korean automaker, Genesis. A four-wheel-drive G-Wagen competitor is pretty far from what Genesis currently has in its lineup, but company design boss Luc Donckerwolke says that such a vehicle could be possible. "We know that we have the toolbox," he said, hinting at a potential architecture within the Hyundai Motor Group that could underpin the Genesis G-Class competitor.
Donckerwolke is likely referring to the rear-wheel-drive, body-on-frame platform that underpins the Kia Mohave and will also be used for the company's upcoming pickup truck. "The next question: does that really fit the needs that all markets have?" he added. "It's nice to have cars that show performance, whether it's off-road or on-road. The purer that philosophy is, the better it is for design."
The design boss refused to fully rule out a G-Class competitor, saying (in a statement full of double negatives) "I don't see why not. I would not say it would not fit the brand." That being said, such a vehicle would require a business case study. "We have a defined line-up of vehicles and whether there is extra satellites we need to add, this is something to be discussed," Donckerwolke said.
We already know there is a waiting list to buy a G63, so there is clearly demand for this type of vehicle. It remains to be seen if Genesis could draw similar interest. Genesis has already taken shots at Mercedes recently with the GV80 Coupe Concept that just debuted in New York. This concept clearly goes after the GLE Coupe and the BMW X6.
"We have to do the homework (to see if it is) in line with the brand values," he explained. "If you have a G-Wagen, for instance, this car (is justified for Mercedes-Benz) because of its heritage, more than because of its performance. To make something, to plug something artificially into a brand, could be a mistake if it does not have the right (genetics)."
A Genesis G-Class competitor could be epic, but given the brand's struggle to reach the sales volume of established brands like BMW and Mercedes, there's no guarantee such a product would fly off dealer lots. "As a designer, yes. As a business opportunity? That's another story," Donckerwolke said.
Join The Discussion