The new player on the luxury car scene has its own agenda.
Although it's taken several years, Hyundai's premium brand, Genesis, seems to finally be hitting its stride. What started off as a large luxury sedan sold as a Hyundai has been split off into its own separate entity. And now it's gunning after BMW and Mercedes buyers. Or is it?
Speaking to Australia's GoAuto, Hyundai Motor's chief operating officer for Australia Scott Grant said the automaker is not aiming at the usual premium brands hailing from Germany, but is rather looking at the premium segment as a whole. "We are not targeting a brand per se, like a BMW or Mercedes. What we are looking at is the totality of the luxury market. And if you look at the luxury market, you say 'well you are going to try to get BMW people to come across.' No, not at all."
At least in Australia, and we don't see why this mentality won't be used in other vital markets such as North America, Genesis has recognized there's growing affluence with different tastes than in the past. Younger up and coming customers are seeking something different and Genesis wants to position itself as not just an alternative to the likes of BMW, but also something fresh.
"We are breaking the total luxury market down into different psychographic profiling areas," Grand added. "We have had this growing affluence underpinned by a strong economy for some time. When you look at the luxury market, there are different mindsets of people who are in that sector who have access to the sorts of money and sort of life experience that they want for a luxury motorcar. And a BMW and Mercedes person is quite different to the sorts of people we will reach out to."
At the same time, Genesis has no intention of targetting Hyundai customers. They are already familiar with the automaker and often remain loyal over the years. Genesis, however, is aiming for first-time premium car buyers who like to be the so-called 'early adopters', in marketing-speak. The German brands have their respective core buyers, and Genesis sees no reason why it can't have the same.