For the past two years, Genesis has used the New York Auto show as a place to debut concept cars that point the way forward for the Korean luxury brand. And following a conversation with Genesis boss Manfred Fitzgerald during the Genesis Open golf tournament in Pacific Palisades, California, it sounds like there’s another hot ticket item in store for this year’s New York expo.
“We’ll show something at the New York show,” Fitzgerald told Roadshow. “If you happen to be in town, you should not miss this one.”
Fitzgerald declined to give any specifics as to what’s coming, but the enthusiasm in his voice spoke volumes.
“I think this will be a turning point for the brand, how people perceive this brand and how people look upon this brand,” Fitzgerald told us. “This one will push the envelope definitely further… A lot of people will be surprised.”
Following Genesis’ official launch as a standalone brand in early 2016, it showed the Genesis New York Concept, a sedan that closely previewed the production G70. Last year, we saw the GV80 — a hydrogen fuel-cell-powered SUV concept — which will hit the market in 2019, though without its fancy, niche powertrain.
“We value New York to show new show cars,” Fitzgerald said. “This is something we sort of started two years ago.”
In fact, Genesis’, um, genesis, took place at the 2007 New York Auto Show, when parent company Hyundai debuted the original Concept Genesis. The following year, Hyundai revealed the two-door Genesis Coupe in New York.
Of course, while new concept cars are very flashy and exciting, they can’t distract from the fact that Genesis is in the midst of a slow US market rollout. You still have to buy a G80 or G90 through a Hyundai dealer for now; Fitzgerald told Roadshow its standalone dealer plan won’t be finalized until the second quarter of this year. And while the new G70 sedan launched to rave reviews late last year, it isn’t estimated to go on sale in the US until June or July. In fact, Fitzgerald said there won’t even be a G70 on its New York show stand.
“We’re not there yet,” Fitzgerald says, citing Genesis’ lack of awareness amongst US customers. He’s hoping this big-time New York show car will help change some of that.