By Moses Akaigwe
Hyundai Motor Group’s strategic commitment to electrifying its product range has resulted in a record number of awards and accolades from experts at opinion-leading international media titles in 2021.
All three of HMG’s automotive brands – Hyundai Motor, Kia and Genesis – have been recognised by the world’s most respected journalists to secure a multitude of top automotive, technology and design honors, confirming HMG’s growing reputation as a leader in the move to sustainable mobility.
Two of the awards for the Hyundai brand came from the auto journalists in Nigeria where the brand is represented by Hyundai Motors Nigeria Limited (Stallion Motors). which also assembles the vehicles locally.
The three brands that make up HMG have each introduced game-changing new electric vehicles this year, with their own clear identities but the shared legacy of HMG’s quality, innovation and performance.
For example, the Genesis GV60, Hyundai IONIQ 5 and Kia EV6 are all based on HMG’s dedicated Electric-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP), developed in-house specifically for EVs.
This affords each model an exceptional combination of interior space, unrivalled performance and ultra-fast charging, which has earned inclusion on prestigious international awards programs – a prime example being the recently announced 2022 European ‘Car of the Year’ awards shortlist, which included both the Hyundai IONIQ 5 and Kia EV6 electric vehicles.
Commenting on the development, Albert Biermann, President and Head of R&D Division at Hyundai Motor Group, remarked: “I am immensely proud of the achievements of the Hyundai Motor Group in 2021. It has been a challenging year in various ways, but our enthusiasm and commitment to provide excellent products for our customers has paid off, and every single one of these awards will drive us even stronger to exceed our customers’ expectations.
“We have made significant advances in R&D over recent years, and our award-winning electrified products are the physical embodiment of that expertise, strategy and investment.”
Biermann further stated: “We will never be complacent, but are confident that we have built solid foundations for further success in the coming years, made possible by competitive and innovative new products across the Group along with our continued joint focus on new forms of mobility.”
Top media recognition
Hyundai Motor began 2021 with a win for Elantra at the prestigious North American Car of the Year awards. Recognition from one of the UK’s biggest car magazines, Auto Express, soon followed: readers voted the Hyundai Kona the UK’s ‘Best Car to Own’ in the Driver Power survey, and the New Car Awards saw Hyundai dominate in six categories, including ‘Car of the Year’ for the all-electric IONIQ 5. The IONIQ 5 also won favor with judges to win the German ‘Car of the Year’ awards.
Top honours were not exclusively reserved for Hyundai Motor’s electrified models – the i20 N was recently named overall ‘Car of the Year’ at the BBC Top Gear annual awards, outperforming models from some of the world’s most exotic and exclusive brands.
The turbocharged i20 N was also heralded as the industry’s ‘Best Hot Hatch’ by various publications and awards organizations in 2021 – including Auto Express, Car Buyer and Scottish Car of the Year. Hyundai Motor was also honored with ‘Manufacturer of the Year’ at the BBC Top Gear awards.
In addition, Kia was also recognized at the BBC Top Gear awards, with the all-electric EV6 named ‘Crossover of the Year’, while also winning in the ‘Premium’ category at the German ‘Car of the Year’ awards. Non-EV product recognition included the Kia Telluride being named on Car and Driver’s ‘10 Best’ list for the third consecutive year, while the Kia Sorento was named ‘Large SUV of the Year’ at What Car? magazine’s annual awards.
Awards for the Genesis brand included the Genesis X Concept claiming the coveted ‘Best of the Best’ Red Dot Design Award, as well as the GV70 receiving ‘SUV of the Year’ recognition from the respected Motor Trend magazine in the United States.
In Nigeria, the Hyundai Kona EV, which is the country’s first locally assembled electric vehicle, was last month voted Electric Car Of The Year at the 2021 Nigeria Auto Journalists Association (NAJA) Awards. Hyundai Creta was also voted Nigeria’s Car Of The Year at the presentation ceremony.
Awards for industry-leading quality and safety
Adding to the many award wins from world-renowned automotive titles, the work of HMG in the important fields of quality and safety has consistently been recognized by leading industry analysts and organizations.
HMG is now one of the most-rewarded automotive groups by nonprofit organization Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). In total, HMG has 28 IIHS award-winning vehicles between its brands, with 12 coming from Hyundai, 10 from Kia and six from Genesis.
Each of the HMG brands have also enjoyed much success at the various J.D. Power awards in 2021. In the J.D. Power Tech Experience Study, Hyundai secured the position of ‘Highest Ranked Mass Market Brand’, while the J.D. Power 2021 Vehicle Dependability Study also named Kia as the number one ‘Mass-Market Brand’. In total, Kia America has secured the highest number of Initial Quality Study (IQS) Awards in the industry.
Genesis has also picked up several J.D. Power trophies this year, including winner of the ‘Midsize Premium Car’ for the G80 in the Vehicle Dependability Study; Best Upper Midsize Premium Car in the Initial Quality Study for G80; and overall brand winners with a Top Innovation Index Score of 634 in the U.S. Tech Experience Index Study.
2022: the potential for more to come
Several further nominations for upcoming awards are set to be decided early this year, 2022. Despite having only been on sale for a relatively short amount of time, Kia’s EV6 and Hyundai’s IONIQ 5 have both reached the final shortlist for the prestigious ‘European Car of the Year’ award.
Finalists for the North American Car, Truck and Utility Vehicle of the Year were announced at last month’s AutoMobility LA and include the Hyundai Santa Cruz as one of three finalists for ‘North American Truck of the Year’, and the Genesis GV70 and Hyundai IONIQ 5 as two of the three finalists in the ‘North American Utility Vehicle of the Year’.
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