Hyundai Auto Canada Corp. is not only going upscale with the launch of the Equus in December, but the sales process for the new sedan will see dealerships bring the vehicle to prospective customers’ homes for a personal walkaround.
“It’s just a different way of doing things,” explains Chad Heard of Hyundai. “The Hyundai way is about finding a better method of executing, anything from R&D, product development right down to the sales and service side of things. If we can offer a unique take on luxury and provide a service to our customers, I think there’s a business opportunity there.”
The Equus, which will hit roughly 20 Hyundai dealerships in mid-December, comes in two trims (Signature and Ultimate) and stickers for $62,999 and $69,999, respectively.
Hyundai says it anticipates selling about 100 units a year and that with that type of limited volume the opportunity exists to do things “a little differently.”
Interested customers can call at 1-800 number to be connected with representatives that will set up a time and place for the presentation. The nearest Equus dealer will then send out its Equus specialist to deliver a full walkaround and test-drive with the prospective customer.
Going head-to-head with pricier alternatives like Mercedes-Benz S-Class and Lexus LS, Hyundai says this personal touch will help the new vehicle stand out from the crowd.
Of course, there is a limit to the distance dealers will drive to meet a customer and the OEM says that is up the dealership’s discretion. The same program will be in place for service as well – customers can call the 1-800 number and have their vehicle picked up and drive a loaner Equus or Genesis while their car is in for service.
Heard said they have chosen dealerships centrally located and in markets with the highest volume for this segment.
Over 50 per cent of the luxury sedan market sales come out of Ontario market with Quebec and British Columbia taking second and third respectively, Hyundai says. With those three provinces making up about 80 per cent of segment sales, Equus dealers have been sprinkled throughout Canada with concentration in Ontario and Quebec.
Lorrie Goldman of Stouffville Hyundai is one of the 20 or so Canadian Equus representatives and he said he is “excited” to get the program off the ground.
“This is a game changer and it brings in an entire new aspect to selling cars. Obviously this is a type of clientele that this applies to and I think they will enjoy this kind of service that hasn’t been offered by anyone other than extremely high-end vehicles.”