Genesis rules out AMG-like performance sub-brand

It wants to focus on the basics first.

Hyundai created its Genesis division to take on big names in the luxury car segment like Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz. The relatively young South Korean firm won't follow its rivals into sub-brand territory; at least not yet.

"We're trying to set our base. We have to get the basics," replied Manfred Fitzgerald, the global head of Genesis, when asked about the possibility of a performance-oriented sub-brand by Car & Driver.

His strategy makes sense. As of writing, Genesis sells three rear-wheel drive sedans named G70, G80, and G90, respectively. The G70 (pictured) is its answer to the BMW 3 Series. Albert Biermann, an engineer who spent decades developing BMWs, now leads Hyundai's research and development department. It must be difficult to resist asking Biermann to turn the G70 into an M3-fighting super-sedan, but Genesis wants to focus on expanding its line-up with volume-oriented models before it starts chasing 'Ring times.

Its model offensive will include crossovers and SUVs; an earlier report claims the first one will make its debut before 2019. Tentatively called GV80, it will borrow a handful of styling cues from the eponymous concept car introduced at the 2017 New York auto show. It will compete in the same segment as the Mercedes-Benz GLE and the BMW X5.

Once it has a full line-up of cars, and once its sales and image both take off, the brand could re-consider its decision not to form a sub-brand dedicated to horsepower. Hyundai showed it's not intimidated by performance when it formed its N sub-brand.

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