Upstart Korean luxury brand Genesis wants to unseat Lexus as Australia’s fourth most popular luxury brand – but we don’t know by when.

    “Success is we want 10 per cent market share in Australia. We want to be ambitious,” said Genesis Motors Australia CEO, Jun Heo.

    “That’s our first step, but we can’t say when we’ll touch 10 per cent market share.”

    While the brand is committing to its strategy of no franchised dealers and fixed pricing, its executives confirmed a guaranteed future value program is in the works.

    A timeframe for this program has yet to be announced.

    The Genesis team is pointedly avoiding sharing sales targets as the brand continues its early ramp-up in Australia and establishes itself on the local luxury car market.

    The brand has been selling cars here for just over 12 months but has only had a two-model range consisting of the G70 and G80, two sedans in a market hungry for SUVs.

    The tides may start to turn now the BMW X5-rivalling GV80 has been launched locally and the BMW X3-rivalling GV70 comes online next year.

    Though the 10 per cent goal is ambitious, Genesis isn’t changing its existing strategy.

    That includes fixed pricing and selling through studios run by the company instead of franchised dealers.

    “We believe in the policy,” said Genesis head of operations, Connal Yan.

    “Other brands are trying to follow. Other brands have targets, a lot of stock, they start discounting.”

    “We have stock, don’t get me wrong. But we’re not going to pile them up like we’re trying to push cars.”

    Market leader Mercedes-Benz is switching to a fixed pricing model from 2022, with sales managed by the head office and the company not on-selling its stock to dealers. It’s trialled this initially with the EQC.

    Genesis is sticking with fixed pricing even as luxury brands have been known to deal.

    “It comes from research, customers hate the negotiation process,” said Genesis Australia marketing manager, Stewart Parnaby.

    “You lose the ability to say you got a great deal. But if everyone at a barbecue bought a $120,000 car for $100,000, isn’t that a $100,000 car? Because everyone paid $100,000 for it.”

    The company has opened two test drive centres in New South Wales, which it says complement its studios – though for now that’s studio, singular. A Melbourne studio opens next year.

    Whether test drive centre or studio, no Genesis retail environment will be paired with a Hyundai dealer.

    Last year, Genesis held a 0.09 per cent share of the Australian premium car market. Mercedes-Benz (excluding its Vans division) held just under 30 per cent.

    Genesis’ goals would put its market share in the vicinity of where Lexus currently is, the Japanese brand boasting a 9.0 per cent share of the Australian premium car market last year. That put it in fourth place overall after Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi, while just above Land Rover and Volvo.

    Year-to-date, Genesis has sold just 127 vehicles, though that’s progress from last year when it sold 103 vehicles overall.

    In contrast, market leader Mercedes-Benz has sold 11,025 vehicles year-to-date.

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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