Today many of us classic car buffs shrug our shoulders and say that it’s hard to tell one new car model form the other. And if a design innovation does occur, it’s not long before it becomes the norm until some other trend sparks competitive model offerings that essentially look the same.
Hyundai’s Genesis brand is trying to distinguish itself in Canada as they have in the US. To bolster the message their Genesis New York concept was on display at the Toronto Auto Show which opened today. Many of the styling cues appear to be taken from the Citroën Metropolis concept car introduced back in September 2010. Note the side body recess into the front fenders, the vertical slices that flair horizontally on each front corner, the flowing C-pillar roofline to the rear, and the flaring of the door bottoms to giving a protruding accent to the lower sill.
We’ve said before how other manufacturers, particularly Hyundai and the three major Japanese companies; Toyota, Honda and Nissan copy Citroën, often managing to get many design features to market before Citroën incorporates them into their production models. Citroën’s Numero 9 concept, first shown in April 2012, introduced a floating roof where the C-pillar is gapped spawned BMW, Lexus, Nissan and Land Rover to introduce roofs with a similar feature on their models.
Hyundai global chief of design and company vice president Peter Schreyer came from Audi and has been given pretty much carte blanche control over style which has certainly upped both the image and revenues for the company. However we are rather surprised that this Genesis concept is so visibly similar to Metropolis. (We commented at the introduction of Metropolis that the overall design was a bit too fussy. It tried to look contemporary by copying the outer skin front fender look that started with the GT by Citroën. Metropolis was a project not designed in France, but rather by Citroën’s international design team based in Shanghai.)
Given how fast Hyundai (including Genesis and Kia) have reacted to market trends and particularly how Genesis has melded Mercedes E Class, Audi A6, BMW 5 series, Aston Martin and Ford Fusion design elements into previous Genesis sedans; we thought they might go a little more revolutionary and introduce their new showpiece influenced by Citroen’s Numero 9 concept. Or maybe that’s coming the next time around!