In 2020, Genesis sold 128,365 units, which is up by 46 percent from than the previous year. It also marked the first time Genesis’ annual sales had crossed the 100,000 units mark.
The growth was largely attributed to the brand’s first SUV model the GV80, a model which later gained fame after Tiger Woods walked away unhurt from a bad crash.
The GV80 is Genesis’s best-selling model, contributing nearly a third of its global sales last year (38,069 units).
Genesis now has 5 models, three sedans and two SUVs. The entry Genesis G70 competes with the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, while the bigger G80 and G90 are analogous to the BMW 5 Series / Mercedes-Benz E-Class and BMW 7 Series / Mercedes-Benz S-Class respectively.
Meanwhile the GV70 and GV80 competes with the BMW X3 / Mercedes-Benz GLC and BMW X5 / Mercedes-Benz GLE respectively.
Cumulatively, the G80 is the brand’s best-selling model, contributing more than half (256,056 units) of the brand’s 500,000 unit sales milestone.
Last month, Genesis premiered its first EV model, the G80 Electric in Shanghai.
Genesis adds that it will be launching another EV model later this year, this time a dedicated EV-only model (as opposed to the G80 Electric variant).
The model would most likely be a production version of the Genesis X Concept, probably aiming at the same group of buyers as the limited production Polestar 1.
Outside of Korea, Genesis is currently present in the USA, Canada, the Middle East, Russia, and Australia. It had also opened its first outlet in China and entry into Europe is planned for this year.
As for Malaysia, Hyundai Sime Darby Motors (HSDM) has one unit each of the Genesis GV80 and Genesis G80 but these are just for the company’s internal use.
The Genesis brand is no stranger to Malaysia, as the previous G80 was launched in Malaysia in 2015 but the model was discontinued shortly after that. A similar fate was seen in Singapore.
We know for a fact that HSDM and Hyundai’s regional office in Jakarta have been conducting extensive studies for the Genesis’ re-introduction into Malaysia but it’s too early to read beyond this and nothing has been confirmed.
The biggest challenge facing Genesis’ return to Malaysia (and the wider ASEAN trade bloc) is that Genesis doesn’t do local-assembly outside of Korea, but the entire South East Asia region imposes heavy tax penalty on imported cars, many still tax cars based on their engine capacity.
Although Thailand has moved away from this direction and towards a CO2 emissions-based one, engine capacity is still a criteria for vehicles with engine capacities above 3-litre.
Also, Genesis models’ large engine capacity also puts it at a disadvantage.
Like Lexus, Genesis is a very US-centric brand and their engine line-up is a reflection of that. The smallest engine option for Genesis is a 2.5-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder, which is still not competitive enough against the 2.0-litre, locally-assembled German peers.