There was a time when I thought of a ‘Korean-made car’ overseas, a car that tastes cheap. In fact, Korean cars sold at the time had poorer quality than competitive cars, but they sold a lot of them at a price close to half. However, as the saying that cheap is Biji-teok, these cars have caused a lot of breakdowns in overseas environments, and it has been revealed that Korean car companies, which were only in a hurry to sell out, have not properly built a service center. It took a very long time to recover the image that had fallen to the floor.
Hyundai Motor Group is the company that boasts the highest recognition while representing the history of Korean cars. Hyundai Motor Group consistently ranks among the top 10 in terms of sales from a certain point in time, and it is the only Korean car to have a single vehicle that has exceeded 10 million cumulative sales. Korea’s domestic market is almost dominant, it has significant sales volumes in the US and Europe, and is competing with Japanese cars by developing new models in developing countries. It sells like this, but what about the image? There is a perception that it is no more, no less, just a ‘average average’ car. A company that does moderately without any unusual part. But something began to change. Hyundai’s first hot hatches’ i30 N ‘and’ Veloster N ‘were evaluated as being inferior to European cars of the same class, and Kia’s stinger’ was lacking in many parts, but it was excellent and noteworthy for the first attempt. The image is changing with the brand of ‘making exceptional cars’ as well.
However, it is not only the N brand that changes perception. The Genesis brand, launched in 2015, is struggling to change the perception that ‘Korean tea is a tea that tastes cheap.’ In this article, I would like to cover the situation and my opinion about the Genesis brand’s overseas expansion.
Genesis’ overseas expansion
Since its first launch in the Korean market, the home ground, Genesis has entered some markets such as North America, the Middle East, Russia and Australia until the first half of 2020. Of these, Genesis is the main market for North America. It is one of the largest markets of Hyundai Motor Group, and non-European premium brands such as Lexus, Infiniti, and Acura are strong markets. In the Middle East market, Hyundai Motor is actively targeting to increase its market share, and in Russia and Australia, the Hyundai Motor Group is in the top ranking. For these reasons, Hyundai Motor Group first launched Genesis in these markets. Then, what about the current status and sales performance of Genesis in markets that are currently exporting?
Let’s start with the situation in the North American market. Genesis has a separate corporation in California called ‘Genesis Motor America’ for sales in North America. Currently, the G70, G80, and G90 lineups are available, and advance reservations for the GV80 SUV are also accepted. For the first time as a sole brand this year, we are trying to raise awareness by participating in Super Bowl ads, and thanks to this, Genesis USA’s Instagram followers are more than 200,000 more than Genesis Worldwide. Unlike Korea, there are some separate showrooms. What about sales performance? Genesis North American corporation 21,233 spacesSold vehicles. That’s more than doubled from the previous year. G70 started selling in earnest in this increase in sales. The G70 was released at the end of the previous year, and only 409 units were sold during the year, but 11,901 units were sold in the past year, when sales began in earnest, contributing to the increase in performance. The G70 has won all three North American automotive awards, and has become more resilient to sales, and is still selling about 1,200 vehicles per month. On the other hand, 7,80 units of the G80 and 2,248 units of the G90 are sold.
Should we compare it to the competition model? The G70’s competitive model, the Lexus IS, sold 14,920 units, the Acura TLX 26,548 units, the Infiniti Q50 25,987 units, and the Alfa Romeo Julia 8,704 units. It’s a low-volume, but as a new brand Good sales volumeIt can be said. The G80’s rival, the Lexus GS, sold 3,378 units, the Lexus ES 51,336 units, the Acura RLX 1,019 units, and the Infiniti Q70 2,552 units sold. Can think. Let’s also look at the G90’s competitive model. The most powerful competitor, the Lexus LS, sold more than double the 5,528 units. Other Asian premium brands do not make cars of this class, and if you refer to European vehicles, you can see that 1,167 Jaguar X, 8,823 BMW 7 series, and 2,963 Audi A8 (including S8) are located at a very low level. Still, the difference between the A8 and the sales volume is not so great. We tried to measure the sales volume as a brand, but Lexus is the only Asian brand that has an F segment sedan. Comparison is meaninglessI think.
If you take a brief look at the sales situation in other markets, Russia In the market last year 2,276 spacesSold. Of these, the G70 sold half of 1,120 units, the G80 sold 943 units, and the G90 sold 213 units. This is a very good figure considering that Infiniti sold 3,479 units as a full lineup and 1,992 units sold by Lexus only competitive models (IS, ES, LS). In fact, you should take into account that the Lexus IS is actually close to discontinuing sales in Russia, but the end of the G80 is more than half of the sales of the new ES (1,813 units), and the G90 sold more than the Lexus LS (140 units), so in this market I think it can be considered as having a seat.
AustraliaSells two G70s and G80s in Taiwan, and last year, sales volume is difficult to find. Around 100is. It’s a figure that’s been sold for six months, and it’s hard to judge exactly what it is considering that the store that sells Genesis is one of ‘Genesis Studio Sydney’. Overall, it’s hard to say that it’s propaganda, and you can think of it as being ‘sold as a new premium brand with very little lineup and recognition’. Depending on how you do it, the results will vary between poles and poles.
Genesis’ plan this year:
Network reinforcement, new market entry, new model aggressive input
So, what is Genesis planning? There are three main solutions. The first is ‘strengthening the network in the existing sales market’, the second is ‘entering into a new market’, and the last is ‘introducing aggressive new models’. It may seem like a very simple strategy, but it’s never been easy for a company. It’s a huge expense and risk. Genesis focuses all three of these strategies this year.
first ‘Strengthening the sales network‘. Genesis opens ‘Genesis Studio’ in the North American market. Genesis Studio is a brand experience hall and flagship store, and is an exhibition hall operated directly by Genesis. It will open in New York, and was originally scheduled to open in April-May, but is expected to be postponed due to the spread of Corona19 in the United States. In addition, separate exhibition halls are continuously expanded, allowing them to be purchased in various places while being differentiated from Hyundai.In the Australian market, Genesis Studio is added to ‘Melbourne’ and ‘Brisbane’ to expand sales and strengthen publicity. Through this, we continue to become the ‘luxury and very few exhibition halls’, strengthening our position as a premium brand, while increasing sales in sluggish Australia. We plan to strengthen sales channels in markets such as Russia and the Middle East.
‘Entering a new market‘ As mentioned earlier, Genesis currently sells only a handful of export markets. 2 countries in North America, Russia, 8 countries in the Middle East, Australia. However, starting this year, we will expand our sales market to the world. priority Chinese marketTo advance. The Chinese market is the largest market with more than 2 million luxury cars per year, and it is still a global market with high influence despite the Corona 19 crisis. Genesis already showed G90, Mint concept, and GV80 concept at the fair in November last year, and established a separate sales corporation, ‘Genesis Motor China’ in Shanghai, and is ready to sell. With the SUV ‘GV80’ as its starting point, it is a position to secure presence in the market through the G90 and the new G80. The ‘mainland’ of premium cars Continental europeEdo also advances. The European continent is a huge market, but as the Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi ‘Germany 3’ virtually dominate, Hyundai Motor Group is preparing for the best. The establishment of the Genesis Motor Europe subsidiary in Munich, Germany, the same as the BMW headquarters, declared the competition. Originally, it was expected to participate in the ‘2020 Geneva Motor Show’, which was scheduled to be held in March this year, and officially announced its advance into Europe, and introduced G80, GV80, etc., but the Geneva Motor Show was canceled due to the spread of Corona 19 in Europe and is looking for a new schedule. It is predicted that the second half of this year will be a strong entry point. In addition, Hyundai has secured a high market share. Indian marketEdo is considering entering this year. Local media reported that in August of last year, Genesis began to examine the supply method and market research before entering the Indian market in 2020, and that the ‘GV80’ will be the first new vehicle to be introduced to the Indian market. In addition, we mentioned that there is a possibility of exporting CKD (semi-assembled product) of GV80 for price competitiveness. Through this new export market, we plan to break away from serious domestic dependence.
Last ‘Introducing aggressive new modelsLet’s find out. The Genesis until the G70 was designed before the decision of independence of the brand, so it lacked differentiation from Hyundai. It lacked an identity in the design of lamps, grills, and interiors. Genesis to establish identity New family lookAnd the G90 facelift model to which it has been applied has recently been applied to North America, the Middle East, and Russia. Following this, in January, the brand’s first SUV, ‘GV80‘Has been released globally. The GV80 is the first model to show off the new family look of Genesis, and it has received a reputation for its unique design and luxurious interior design. It is the first export market in North America to be pre-booked, and it is known that more than 6,000 of the 10,000 North American sales targets have been pre-booked this year. Genesis announced the launch of North America during the summer. In addition, the company plans to release it in the second half of the year in the Australian market, and it will be the first to market in Europe, China, and India to increase sales.
E-segment sedan and the most popular model after G70G80The ‘Full Change Model’ was also released globally online recently. It adopts a strong family look similar to the GV80, and its interior and exterior designs are well received in the global market. When the original G80’s original model, ‘Hyundai Genesis DH’, showed a steady sales volume despite being an old model released in 2013, it is said that the new model is expected to promote more. It will be officially launched in the North American and Australian markets around the end of this year, and the new G80 has already been updated on the global website and the North American website. In addition, along with the GV80, it is being pointed out as one of the first models to be launched in new markets such as Europe and China. Also in the second half Partial change model of G70And medium-sized SUV ‘GV70‘Is a situation where a global disclosure is scheduled. It is called ‘New Car Supercycle’. Some may say that the new car input is very passive compared to Mercedes-Benz, BMW, etc., but there are three brands in the Hyundai Motor Group, and this is enough for Genesis, which uses a different rear-wheel drive platform alone within the group. Excessive capacityI can see it.
Genesis in my overseas market
So, what about the future of the Genesis brand? Let me unravel the perspective I see.
First, in the near future, in the North American market I don’t think it will be a presence brand. I think the first button is wrong. Looking at Japan’s leading rival brand ‘Lexus’, we are receiving high level of sales every year, receiving the brand value of German premium brands in the United States. On the other hand, other Japanese premium brands ‘Infiniti’ and ‘Acura’ sell well, but the brand value is not high. What do you think is the reason? That’s right. How well did you differentiate yourself from popular car brands from the beginning of the brand? Lexus released the first-generation LS through thorough analysis and research, and the ES, which was only a Toyota car, emphasized its own LS without emphasizing it. Thorough separationThrough this, we succeeded in informing ‘We are not Toyota’.
However, in the case of Infinity and Acura, such a thorough separation was not achieved. Infiniti has been sticking to the method of adding and selling ‘large displacement engines and premium materials to the Nissan base’ for more than 10 years since its launch.Expensive nissan‘, The awareness became solid. Afterwards, G-series, etc., was able to capture the brand image to some extent by starting full differentiation lately, but the perception in North America is still not very good. Acura has one more drink. Although it advanced before Lexus, it sold only the “Honda mid-sized cars sold in countries other than North America” with only the badge, name, and engine specifications. Because of this, in North America, Expensive hondaIt is criticized as, and it is not recognized better than Infinity. This still only changes the design and interior of the front-wheel drive Honda platform, and even that does not improve the sense of luxury of the interior, so it is very poorly recognized.
Genesis does not like Infiniti and Acura, but developed a car based on a rear-wheel drive platform that is different from Hyundai. It is the same that the initial image differentiation failed.. The G70, the G80, and the facelift G90 were all developed before the brand independence, making it difficult to distinguish them from Hyundai in design, and even the G80 was a vehicle that slightly changed the Hyundai Genesis 2nd generation model that was sold in the global market. At the beginning of the entry, a small space was exhibited within the Hyundai dealership, and the service center was also shared with Hyundai. In other words, the recognition that ‘the appearance is difficult to distinguish from the ordinary Hyundai, and the purchase goes to a Hyundai dealer, so is it an expensive Hyundai or something?’ We are correcting this aspect in 2019, but I think it will take some time to correct the initial perception. I think it would have been better not to be hasty in 2015 and to launch a little late after establishing a clear identity and separating the exhibition hall.
Another reason for the observation is that the lineup is absolutely short compared to competing brands. Other brands have already been on sale for decades, so the full lineup is complete. On the other hand, since Genesis is a new brand, it lacks a lineup, and since it is in the Hyundai Motor Group, it is difficult to add new cars as soon as the group’s capabilities are dispersed. This year, the new lineup GV80 is released in North America and the GV70 is also released, but other new cars are at the full-change or facelift level of the existing lineup, and it is still difficult to cover various segments. At least after 2023, it seems to be able to have a full lineup at the level of competitive brands. I will need more time.. Should we look at the positive side? The North American market is not going to withdraw. In the North American market, interest in Genesis has increased to some extent, and awareness has risen, and there are good signs such as the advance reservation of the GV80 exceeds 6,000 units. For the time being A premium brand that manages to grow slowly at the same timeI think it might be.
What about the Chinese and European markets? China has a large market, but it is occupied by other luxury brands, and the sales volume of Hyundai Motor Group itself is not high, and not many consumers know Genesis. However, if you target the US and Japanese brand markets well, it is possible to properly settle in the niche. Chinese consumers ‘taste is’Luxury‘, Genesis emphasizes this luxury and quietness. The size of the body is larger than that of competing cars, so the space is large, and the G90 already has an L version. The real hard thing is Europe. The share of the three German companies is really overwhelming, and the level of their influence is that Benz’s share is 28.4%, BMW’s share is 26.2%, and Audi’s share is 23.0% as of 19. A total of 80%is. Except for these, even European brands are struggling. Land Rover is 4.9%, Jaguar 2.7%, and DS Automobile, Maserati, Alfa Romeo, etc. are not good.
For Japanese brands, Acura didn’t advance at all, and Infiniti pulled out in the first quarter of this year, while sales of Lexus, the only Asian competitor, with hybrids, grew. Less than 50,000. Although Tesla is expanding its local market with electric vehicles, it is not a reference for Genesis because it is a highly specialized market. In this situation, many experts have a negative outlook. “It’s very difficult for a new brand to break the shout of a European premium brand,” said Felipe Munoz, an analyst at European auto analysis specialist “Zato Dynamics.” “If Hyundai doesn’t reveal a specific plan, I’m not sure that Genesis’ European launch will actually happen.” In some ways it is correct It is very difficult to achieve mass sales in these markets. It is a new Asian brand. Hyundai Motor Group, which was a cheap car image a while ago.
But Considering the characteristics of the brand called Genesis, the story is different.. The sales target of all Genesis brands is 110,000 units this year. It is thought that less than 150,000 units will be sold next year, when sales in Europe will begin in earnest. Considering that more than 70,000 of these will be consumed in domestic demand in Korea based on next year’s standards, there is not much overseas sales. With new cars in front of them, they sell about 40,000 cars in North America, and if you exclude Russia, Australia, and China, there will not be much to enter Europe. It’s not a brand that sells more than 300,000 cars a year like the Lexus brand. For these genesis, it may not be right to set ‘mass sales, high market share’ as the standard of success like other brands. 20,000 units a year, less than half of Lexus Europe’s sales, is a huge success in light of Genesis’ production. With this perspective, Genesis’ entry into Europe It’s not a very reckless decision. I think.
Genesis has sales points such as ‘differentiated design, large space compared to the same class, freshness, and the existence of a diesel engine lineup not found in Lexus’, and if Hyundai Motor Group’s rich European network is used, it can sell about 15,000 to 20,000 units a year. I wonder if I can devote myself to the goal. Next year, the export market will also have five lineups of G70, G80, G90, GV70, and GV80.In the middle, the EV version of the G80 and the European strategic ‘G70 Shooting Brake’ that are not found in Lexus will be added, and the SUV electric vehicle will come out at the end of the year. If you target the niche market properly, it may be a sufficiently achievable goal. However, there are conditions. This is how marketing works. Genesis is completely different from Hyundai Kia Motors in terms of appearance and platform. It has also differentiated its image. Most of them are fresh new models, so it has the competitiveness of Charang. However, if you do not thoroughly separate sales and service networks from Hyundai Motors for network use, or devise an incorrect public relations strategy, you will never achieve good results. It is important to thoroughly separate so that Hyundai’s afterimage does not remain, and devise a promotional strategy that is perfect for Genesis. Fortunately, if you look at the marketing of Hyundai Motor Europe in recent years, I believe you will do well.
To briefly comment on other markets, in Russia Continuously growingIt is clear to walk. In Russia, sales and preferences for Korean cars are steadily rising, and they are either superior in sales or narrowing the gap compared to equivalent models of Japanese premium brands. Australia Still uncertainI think. The market size is small, so there is little risk, and it is clear that it will continue to play a great role as a test bed for the right-handed model, but I think the actual sales are still unpredictable. In the Indian market where the sales of Korean cars are high, To some extent propagandaIt seems to do. Despite the end of the Kia Carnival, it was a success with marketing as a ‘luxury minivan’.In this case, we can predict that Genesis, which has built a more luxurious and fresh lineup focusing on new cars, has a great chance of success.
Personally, I would like the Genesis brand to survive. It’s not just Korea’s premium brand. Genesis is conducting various attempts that Korean cars have not been able to do under the slogan ‘YOUNG LUXURY’. Unlike a popular car that often requires a complete change in appearance, it is a principle of the premium market, where it is a principle to change the frame while maintaining a certain degree, so you can continue to take time to establish the proper identity of Genesis, and a profound yet unique design. I was able to establish a language. At the same time, Genesis’ pursuit of ‘human-centered progress’ and’ young luxury ‘meet, I’m looking forward to seeing any new attempts.
Genesis clearly said that they would pursue something completely different from what luxury brands have done so far. We are wondering what genesis designers and engineers will be able to demonstrate to these values. If Genesis works well outside of Korea, it will be able to positively change the image of Korean cars while increasing consumer choices and seeing more diverse attempts. As a car lover, I hope you will be more than just a prospect in this column.
More than III CAR GO!Was the editor Kwon Chan-hyuk. We sincerely thank everyone who read.
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2020.04.02 III CAR GO!