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Car and Driver: Genesis Performance Variants Won’t Wear Hyundai’s N-Division Badge

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Hyundai_N_Experience_010We’ve already told you that Hyundai plans to offer performance versions of cars to be sold under its Genesis luxury nameplate, but now we’ve learned that these won’t carry the branding of the N Division that will develop them. It wouldn’t do to have your new upscale marque sharing a sub-brand with the mainstream Hyundai cars, even if it’s the same team developing both.

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“I honestly can’t tell you what [the Genesis performance cars] will be called yet,” N Division boss Albert Biermann (above) told us at the unveiling of the Hyundai i30N prototype at the Nurburgring 24 Hours race. “We haven’t decided.”

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He did confirm that work continues on creating tuned versions of at least two cars in the Genesis range. We believe that one of these is most likely to be a V6-powered coupe aimed at the BMW M4, a car that Biermann was responsible for developing during his previous tenure at the German maker’s M-Division. He hinted that the second N-tuned Genesis variant will be based on one of the larger 80-series models, most probably the sedan.

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“We’re still setting up the whole Genesis brand and that has an impact on how we create the high-performance line-up, the order in which things happen,” he told us. “We’re in the discussion right now, but I couldn’t tell you which model will be the first with a high-performance application yet. It’s still too early.”

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Biermann did pretty much tell us which one it won’t be: the existing G90.

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“If you look at the G90 it’s about a high luxury level; if we look at the customers who want to go out there [and buy a performance version] it’s too early at this point,” Bierman said. “Maybe when our brand is more mature we will look there. The key, I think, is that we should go step by step and grow.”

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One of those early baby steps, it appears, will be coming up with a separate moniker other than “N” to distinguish a performance-oriented Genesis from the rest.

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