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by Matt Campbell

Hyundai Australia claims buyers are no longer concerned about spending more than $50,000 on their cars.

The company’s local chief operating officer John Elsworth said at the launch of the updated 2015 Santa Fe that the sales figures show that customers are no longer pensive about purchasing a Hyundai vehicle with a price tag starting above $50,000, and the company claims that is good news ahead of the Genesis luxury sedan launching in November.

“One of the most pleasing parts of our performance with Santa Fe is the mix,” said Elsworth, speaking specifically of the $50K-plus Santa Fe Highlander model, which attracts 49 per cent of sales (the mid-range Elite attracts 32 per cent, with the base model Active accounting for 19 per cent).

“The Highlander is a $50,000-plus model, and is the majority of our sales,” he said.

Hyundai Santa Fe Highlander1

“I think that points to a very strong position from a brand point of view for when we introduce Genesis. The natural barrier of 50-odd thousand dollars doesn’t seem to be an impediment anymore to the market to buy a Hyundai.

“That sends us a really good signal for where we’ve got to head with Genesis,” Elsworth said.

Pricing for the new Genesis luxury sedan is set to be revealed in the coming weeks, with Hyundai launching the car in early November.

The brand has indicated a price of below $60,000 would be the starting point for the V6-powered Genesis model, which will compete with Holden Caprice and Lexus ES.

Hyundai will also launch a new Santa Fe SR model in the first quarter of 2015, which is set to be positioned above the Santa Fe Highlander (now priced from $53,240).