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Hyundai confirms standalone luxury brand using Genesis name

The family will eventually include six models, catering to \'new luxury\' customers.

Confirming recent reports, Hyundai has announced plans to create a standalone luxury brand using the Genesis name.

Borrowing its title from the company's midsize luxury sedan, the unit will eventually include six new models by 2020. Specific details of the lineup remain unclear, though the Equus, Genesis sedan and Genesis coupe will likely serve as the initial offerings. Rumors point to a midsize premium crossover as the next addition to the family.

The company will work to establish a unique design identity, emblem, naming structure and customer service offering. Unlike Japanese rivals, however, there appears to be no plans to establish a separate distribution network for Genesis models.

Future nameplates will take inspiration from German and Japanese luxury brands, with an alphanumeric structure that combines the letter 'G' with a number, such as G90, G80 or G70, to distinguish the segment.

The branch vehicle styling away from Hyundai's core mass-market models, the company has created a new "Prestige Design" division. The unit will be led by Luc Donckerwolke, a design veteran with experience at Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini and other Volkswagen Group brands.

"In creating the design signature of Genesis brand cars, we set out to display confidence and originality, creating highly desirable products that present new charm through innovative styling and proportions," said Hyundai chief design officer Peter Schreyer.

The Genesis offerings will initially go on sale in Korea, China, North America and Middle Eastern markets before expanding to Europe and other parts of Asia. The company will be targeting 'new luxury' customers, rather than attempting to directly pull customers from established players in the premium segments.

Photo by Ben Hsu.

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