Speaking to Australian media at the 2017 Geneva motor show, Kia chief designer Gregory Guillaume said Hyundai’s N Performance and Genesis sub-brands might make sense for Hyundai, but neither is a path Kia has plans to follow.
“When we work on and develop our cars, we don’t really think about Hyundai, to be honest,” Guillaume said.
“There’s enough competition outside to compete with the sister brand. I know that we have no goals to do a sporty sub-brand, also no goals to do a premium sub-brand.
“We believe that Kia, as a brand, is elastic enough or flexible enough to be able to deliver a car like the Picanto, like the Stinger, like the Sorento, and it’s actually more beneficial for the brand itself.
“It might make sense for Hyundai – they didn’t have much of a sporty character or association to it – but we’ve been trying to bring sportiness and youth to our cars for quite a while now, and it was working. People saw our cars as being very dynamic, so we don’t really feel the need to do that.”
Guillaume said what you will see is Kia expand on is its range of GT models and GT-Line model variants.
“Our plan is to deliver GT-Line versions for all cars of the line-up, in some cases, GT versions. But I think that’s strong enough for us.”
Launched on the European Cee’d, Kia’s GT-Line is now a feature of the already-launched European Sportage, with the new third-generation Picanto (pictured top) following suit. In Australia, the Kia Optima GT is currently joined by the Sorento GT-Line, and Sportage GT-Line.
What do you think? Should Kia take on the likes of Hyundai’s N Performance and Genesis sub-brands? Let us know in the comments section below.