Hyundai has designs on leading the luxe market

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Hyundai has designs on leading the luxe market

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Lee Sang-yup

Hyundai Motor Group has recruited another expert designer in a bid to overtake global carmakers with prestigious designs.

Lee Sang-yup, the former head of exterior and advanced design at Bentley Motors, has been appointed vice president in charge design for Hyundai Motor and its luxe brand Genesis.

“Lee, a national player among the world’s most esteemed carmakers, has already proven his capabilities through his past work,” a company spokesman said.

Lee has previously worked at Volkswagen Group’s California design center as well as at General Motors and Porsche.

His most recent work at Bentley involved the brand’s Bentayga luxury sports utility vehicle and EXP concept car that was showcased at the Geneva Motor Show last year.

“My stage was centered overseas for a long time, but the innovative work and rapid growth at Hyundai and Kia have been a pure joy and pride for me as a Korean car designer,” said Lee Sang-yup. “I now would like to contribute to the nation’s biggest carmaker by designing a new identity for Genesis and to make Hyundai Motor a car design leader in the world.”

Hyundai Motor Group showed its determination to make its luxe brand Genesis a leading contender in the luxury car market, alongside BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Lexus, through high-profile appointments at the end of last year.

It appointed two high-profile foreigners - former Bentley designer Luc Donckerwolke to head Hyundai’s design center, and former Lamborghini director of brand and design Manfred Fitzgerald as the senior vice president for the Genesis brand strategy department - after launching the Genesis’ flagship EQ900 sedan last year.

Hyundai Motor’s vice chairman, Chung Eui-sun, is said to have been the key player in recruiting the world-class experts to the company.

Prior to launching the Genesis brand, the carmaker was gearing up to gain global recognition by hiring Peter Schreyer, former creator of the Audi TT designs, as the design chief of Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors.

BMW M’s former vice president of engineering, Albert Biermann, also joined the company in 2014, tasked to develop new high-performance cars.


BY KIM JEE-HEE [kim.jeehee@joongang.co.kr]

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