Adrian Porter, Hyundai Motor Europe: Changing perception brings new customers
Hyundai has been actively attacking the European car market – both fleet and private – over recent years. During the launch of the i20 in November, Adrian Porter, Director of Fleet and Remarketing for Hyundai Motor Europe, told us of the ambitions of Hyundai in Europe.
Adrian Porter took over this critical role for Hyundai at the beginning of 2014, and has therefore had almost a year to review the situation and put his own plans into action.
You have been making inroads into the European fleet and private markets – how is it going?
Adrian Porter: Overall it is going very well – this year we are in fifth position among all European manufacturers in terms of fleet growth and by the end of the year we will certainly achieve our fleet and overall targets. This year these targets were relatively constrained from a manufacturing point of view, but we will be targeting further growth in 2015.
What sort of market share are you targeting?
Adrian Porter: Hyundai will certainly achieve an overall market share figure of 3.3% by the end of this year which is approximately where we ended last year, and our target was to maintain this level. The market itself increased slightly in Europe this year, which was of course a challenge we had no control over!
What about fleet?
Adrian Porter: We have grown our true fleet sales by around 18% year on year and within our main markets growth has been excellent. In some of the smaller and Eastern European markets it has been much more challenging – we have been able to grow on the private side but the fleet activity has remained relatively static. Growth within these smaller markets has been around 7%. So overall we are increasing and will achieve our fleet target for this year.
Do you plan to increase the overall market share of 3.3% next year?
Adrian Porter: We certainly intend to grow our volume more significantly going forward both in fleet and overall.
You are just launching the B-segment i20, new generation. How important is this car for the overall market and fleet?
Adrian Porter: For us it is quite a significant vehicle – we have grown sales of this model by something like 45% over the last five years. But over these same five years the fleet share of this car has grown by 161%. So this is really important.
The i20 is a big leap forward compared to the outgoing model…
Adrian Porter: Yes, and we have been seeing big jumps within the context of our Hyundai initiative ‘Product Momentum 2017’. These jumps have been seen with the i10 and then with the Genesis and now with the i20. We certainly believe that the i20 is a more mature vehicle which will target a more discerning and younger audience, and of course it is a much better fit in what is becoming an increasingly demanding fleet segment. Our own surveys show that the number one reason for choosing a Hyundai is design with 30% of our customers purchasing based on this criteria. The current i20s number one criteria is still value for money, so this new model will hopefully appeal to the more style oriented customers also seeking a strong value proposition. And it is very satisfying to see that something like 80% of i20 customers are coming to us from other brands. We are currently building on this design based brand perception which will be further enhanced with each new model change.
Will there be other versions of this model?
Adrian Porter: There will certainly be a 3-door coupe early next year. In total, we will have launched 22 new vehicles between 2014 and 2017, so this really is a product offensive.