Genesis opened its first two dealerships last year. Lafayette, La., and another in Greer, South Carolina. There are about 100 more stores at some stage of development, but most dealers so far have opted not to invest in the brand’s Keystone program, the retail facility design program Genesis rolled out in 2020. I’m here. It continues to sell luxury vehicles from Hyundai stores instead of most Genesis dealers.
“It’s not fair for Genesis to have a great product and go up against BMW, Mercedes and even Lexus stores, but they sell it on the side streets of Hyundai dealerships.”
“It’s not luxury,” he said. “Dealers and manufacturers know that. It’s how we get from where we are now.”
Things have changed for Genesis since 2020, and an investment proposal could look much sweeter to hesitant dealers.
A portfolio of three sedans offered by Hyundai spin-offs has grown into a line-up of highly engineered and technical vehicles, including two top-selling luxury crossovers and three electric vehicles. The brand is now seen by US consumers as a true luxury player. Genesis’ last year’s sales he reached 56,410 units, up 14% year-on-year in a market that was down 7.9%.
Genesis is now aiming to take its product line further upstream and become an all-electric luxury line. Genesis CEO Jose Muñoz spoke with a group of dealers earlier this year to encourage them to invest in the store. He told them that two of his dealers, who had already invested in standalones, were making higher profits than before.
Bergstrom believes Genesis cannot compete with other luxury brands without independent stores.
“If you’re trying to sell people the Ritz-Carlton experience at a Motel 6 and ask them to come back for a second time, they’re going to have a hard time,” he said of the brand.
“When you’re used to the lavish treatment offered by top luxury brands and get serviced at a Hyundai store with the experience of a value brand, it’s not an apples-and-apples battle,” he said.
“Genesis needs to make dealers want to be able and switch over all this overhead, all this investment, so that their guests can have a luxury experience,” Bergstrom said.
“It’s one thing to have a special car and it’s one thing to treat that guest like that.”
https://www.autonews.com/dealers/genesis-making-slow-progress-retail-stores Slow Progress of Genesis at Retail Stores