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Hyundai Experiences Success In Transforming Its Image

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On: Wed, Jan 18, 2012 at 10:15AM | By: Chris Weiss

Hyundai Experiences Success In Transforming Its Image

The past few years have been huge for Hyundai. Not two full decades ago, Hyundai was an automaker synonymous with "value" (read: cheap, low-end cars). It was an option if all you needed/could afford was an entry level vehicle, but wasn't a company you considered if you had the money for something--anything--more reliable and better equipped.

Over the course of last decade or so, Hyundai slowly started to shed its value-only image and became recognized for reliable, innovative products. The company that once occupied the bargain basement next to the epic failure known as Yugo even released a solid luxury vehicle in the Equus. In the past four years, Hyundai has twice won the North American Car of the Year Award, including a win for the Elantra at this year's awards. According to executives, the company has also experienced some tangible examples of perception change among consumers.

At the Detroit Auto Show, Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik, said that Hyundai is transforming from "value" brand to "valuable" brand. That might seem like a lateral move to some, but it implies that Hyundai is moving past its reputation for inexpensive cars and toward a more robust reputation of good cars at a good price.

Krafcik said that a few years ago, Hyundai had to rely on rebates to convince customers to take a Hyundai vehicle home. In 2011, consumers willingly paid 96 percent of Hyundai models' sticker price versus 86 percent in 2009. Reading in between the lines, that indicates that consumers aren't just attracted to Hyundai dealerships by good deals and low prices but by the vehicle models themselves.

Hyundai's 2011 U.S. sales were up by 20 percent, double the 10 percent increase of the industry as a whole. Hyundai now has a 5.1 percent share of the U.S. market.

In 2012, Hyundai plans to put a focus on customer satisfaction, which declined between 2010 and 2011. It will also look to continue to innovate in the automotive market.



Sami18 | 10:30AM (Wed, Jan 18, 2012)

I am glad Hyundai has come up in the cars businesses, i like all their cars.


Stephy21 | 10:32AM (Wed, Jan 18, 2012)

Hyundai has always been my favorite for reliable and inexpensive cars.

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