Hyundai’s flagship Genesis luxury sedan could form the basis for a new upmarket SUV model, according to reports out of the US.
Reuters quotes four anonymous sources said to be close the matter, saying the Korean carmaker is looking to fill ‘gaps’ in its model range.
It’s the same story in Australia, with the popular ix35 to be replaced by the Tucson by the end of 2015, and the Santa Fe serving the large SUV market.
Hyundai has recently introduced the world to the upcoming compact Creta SUV, but the carmaker has no variants to compete with the likes of the enormous Cadillac Escalade (pictured below) or Lincoln Navigator models in the US.
While a Genesis-based SUV would fill that void, at least one source reportedly declared that Hyundai was treading softly with the idea for now.
Also, the carmaker could be looking at a long turnaround for a new upper-large SUV stretching perhaps to 2018, with the source adding Hyundai has doubts over whether buyers could be swayed from the American brands and Lexus, and is wary that a future jump in oil prices may turn buyers away from the segment altogether.
Hyundai reportedly confirmed that its Veracruz model (which was the carmaker’s biggest SUV) for overseas markets has been discontinued, but told Reuters "this does not mean we are giving up on a large SUV".
"We are considering developing premium, large SUVs based on customers' needs. We plan to respond to the fast-changing market centred around SUVs by beefing up our SUV line-up," Hyundai said.
Another gap Hyundai may be looking to fill is the pickup market, where the carmaker currently sits scoreless on the board against the sales-might of Toyota’s HiLux and others.
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