Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Hyundai Attempts to Redefine Image with Genesis vs. BMW ads
Luxury, speed and power are three words not normally associated with Hyundai, but the Korean Automaker is hyping its new sedan model- the Genesis, as the reasonable alternative to the BMW and Mercedes.
Apparently, Hyundai is trying to shed the stigma of a cheaply-constructed foreign car, but the latest ad for the 2009 Genesis gave me the impression that Hyundai is suffering from an inferiority complex.
The ad mentions the 375 hp engine, but the emphasis throughout the ad series is Hyundai's "better performance" than BMW and Mercedes.
- "More effective braking power than the BMW 550i.
- "Can pull more .94 G's through a corner, surprisingly better than than the BMW 550i. Which means the competition may begin to fall out of the picture."
- "It has 124 sound-dampening innovations that help make the cabin AS quiet as the flagship BMW and Mercedes sedans.
First of all, Hyundai's phrasing and terminology is suspect. "More effective" braking power sounds like they're spinning the braking stats to highlight one out of many categories. In the turning a corner comparison, Hyundai said "surprisingly better". My question is:
If your product is so reliable and respected, why should we be surprised if its better? As for the ad regarding the quiet cabin, Hyundai's interior was equal to BMW and Mercedes.
Upon further analysis, Hyundai doesn't have any hard facts that convince me that the Genesis is indeed a superior automobile than its European competitors. Hyundai itself was surprised when its car handled a corner better and their third ad didn't impress me at all, because Hyundai didn't even claim to be superior to its competitors
Superior quality for cheaper in price. Obviously, that's a common tactic that car companies have used for years, but it's harder to swallow when Hyundai tries to lure
Another important factor to consider is Hyundai's traditional market-low to middle income families. As middle America struggles to survive, why would Hyundai abandon them in hopes of luring wealthy CEOs and prominent businessmen who have already developed brand loyalty to their high performance luxury sedans?
Perhaps Hyundai is seeking the young, 25-35 year old mid-level entrepreneurs who are trying to show a savvy yet sporty side to their lifestyle.
By Matt O'Hern at 12:35 PM | Comments (1)