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  3. The new Hyundai Azera changed the rules and Hyundai Top executives explain the details

The new Hyundai Azera changed the rules and Hyundai Top executives explain the details

27 Jun 2023
  • Will the Azera effect Genesis family?
  • Why was the design of the New Azera changed?

Hyundai Azera has always been an icon in the region and Hyundai realized that the game of premium sedan cars is changing and wanted to grab a bigger piece, thus they introduced the All-New Hyundai Azera with a game changing mindset, a higher level of premium position even after just two years of the latest facelift and now it is even closer to its luxurious brother Genesis.

We sat down with fellow journalists in a top executive round table asking the tough questions to Won-Hwee Choi (Head of Large Vehicle Project Management 1 Team, HMC), Byung-Joo Yoo (Large Vehicle Research Engineer, HMC) and Sun-Seok Choi (Global Product Planning Manager, HMC).

The New Hyundai Azera

The New Hyundai Azera

Q: the first question is why? You worked so hard to achieve the position of the Azera in a specific segment for so many years and now you are shifting to a higher price segment which many not be what your usual consumer of the Azera is used to?

A: let’s start with the fact that in the Korean Market since the 5th generation, the Azera is considered as a premium Sedan, but that is not just the Korean taste, it is expanding to international markets as well and each market has its own perception on the Azera.

Q: Are you looking to competing with the Germans and even with your own sister company as you are now tapping into the G80 and G70?

A: Let me start with your suggestion that we are tapping into the Genesis segment, well first of all Azera is a front wheel drive vehicle and Genesis is not, this is just one small difference that will differentiate the car and the segments.

Q: Why Hybrid, why not electric, since you already have the platform and technology for it and in this segment, electric is the trend?

A: Hyundai is already working on lots of electric cars and yes, we do have the technology and we have been introducing electric cars under the name Ioniq for some time and IONIQ already has a sedan electric, so we don’t want this to affect the Azera. And, lots of people around the world think that electric cars are the trend however lots of people are still demanding to have ICE and it will continue to be like that. The infrastructure is not coming as fast, so Hyundai think that there are still room for ICE but we are definitely preparing an EV trim for the Azera.

Q: What is the difference between the Azera and the G family in Genesis, since now the Azera is tapping a bit in the Genesis segment?

A: we answered that previously, but let’s consider that we are giving you more options when you are looking for premium or slightly premium sedans, for example you can get the G70 but if you need more room, you can always look into the Azera.

A great shift in Hyundai design language

A great shift in Hyundai design language

Q: In the last decade, we’ve seen a great shift in Hyundai design language but we are seeing lots of design shifts in Hyundai lately, especially that the Azera facelift was just two years ago, do you think this might be confusing for the consumer?

A: Well, we need to take this to the designers in Korea (LOL), but Hyundai is trying to keep up with the latest design trends as well as set its own design trends and the world is moving fast, it is not easy t do a facelift and then 2 years later change the design language, but now we are switching to electrification and we are trying to set a trend and not just on the exterior design and we are not alone in this Porsche is doing this and Mercedes are doing this as well.

Q: When you say, you are rolling this design on all models, it means that everything that is coming new has that same design language?

A: well, we discuss this with every car we produce, what we will carry over and what will be unique and we decide accordingly

Q: Toyota is not only focusing on EV but always on fuel cells, and other manufacturers are following the same, why is Hyundai focusing on lithium batteries?

A: we are expanding in lithium batteries but also working on other projects that we can not disclose at the moment, we are ready for the lithium and other types of batteries also and fuel cells is easy but the infrastructure is harder than EV but we worked on that in Switzerland and USA so we are working in every direction and we are ready for all possibilities that are coming in the future.

Q: Since you are talking about the Future, you guys won with the Ioniq 5 in 2021 and Ioniq 6 in 2022, we haven’t seen the Ioniq 7 yet?

A: well you have seen the concept cars so get ready for it

Q: What do you think about the Chinese Cars that are offering almost same features with half the price?

A: the way Chinese are doing their business, they can not change the market, we can say that they are good or we should ignore them, but the customer is the judge. Some are willing to try Chinese cars and some are not but no one wants to change their cars every 1 year, so let’s see in future and we talk about reliability.

Q: The Chinese are offering 10 years warranty and more than 1 million KM, we know that no one will drive 1 million kilometers, but they are sending a message that they are reliable and trusts their products?

A: today we talked about Heritage right? Hyundai has a heritage and I think this speaks for itself and if the Chinese cars are so tasty why their market share is not growing that fast.

Q: why choose the front-wheel drive layout and not AWD and RWD?

A: If we make RWD, you will tell me we are killing the G80 (LOL), we have a great front-wheel drive platform so we are using it and maybe in the next facelift we might change the platform and go for RWD

Wael Nakhle

BY Wael Nakhle

Wael is an automotive content writer specializes in creating written content for Motor 283. Producing a wide range of content, including blog posts, articles, product descriptions, reviews, and technical guides related to cars, trucks, motorcycles, and other vehicles, with an unprecedented passion for cars, and motorcycles.

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