Hyundai feted in U.S. for residual value of models

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Hyundai feted in U.S. for residual value of models

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Hyundai Motor said yesterday it earned three unique model line awards in the United States for the first time at the 14th annual Residual Value Awards by Automotive Lease Guide (ALG).

Korea’s largest automaker said its Elantra (Avante in Korea) took the top prize in the compact car segment for the third year in a row after outpacing the Scion tC and Mazda3, which came second and third.

Hyundai Azera (Grandeur), which made its U.S. debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show last year, was named the best large car with residual value, stopping Nissan Maxima’s bid to take the top prize for the fifth year in a row.

In addition, the Santa Fe Sport, released in the U.S. in April, beat the Subaru Outback, which has clinched the prize for the last three years, and was named best car in the midsize SUV segment.

“Hyundai’s successful residual value retention has been driven by well-executed products, improved perception of quality and a disciplined approach to incentives and fleet,” Larry Dominique, president of ALG, said in a statement. “Receiving residual value awards for the Elantra, Azera and the redesigned Santa Fe Sport demonstrates that Hyundai continues to deliver on that promise.”

ALG honors the vehicles in each segment that are predicted to retain the highest residual value after three years. This year’s awards were based on 2013 model-year vehicles, and winners were chosen after consideration of segment competition, historical vehicle performance and industry trends.

The U.S.-based company has been handing out the awards since 1999.

Hyundai said the residual value of its entire lineup ranked second overall behind Japan’s Honda among mainstream brands. Last year, it ranked third.

Meanwhile, Kia Motors, Hyundai’s smaller affiliate, was ranked eighth among 15 mainstream brands.

Hyundai hopes the awards will improve its brand image and boost sales of new models despite a recent controversy that saw the company sued in the U.S. and Canada for overstating the fuel economy of its vehicles sold in the region. The automaker said the revised fuel efficiency ratings were used in the latest evaluation.

“Our continuous ‘quality-first’ management policy is being reflected in the increasing residual value of our vehicles,” Hyundai said in a release. “This shows how we are striving for the best quality in terms of performance, safety and design from the development stages of all our models.”

By Joo Kyung-don [kjoo@joongang.co.kr]

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