The iPad pitch is aimed to tap into the hype over Apple Inc.’s sleek tablet computer and will be part of the package for consumers who drive off with Hyundai’s Equus luxury sedan.
People who buy the South Korean automaker’s first venture into the super-premium market will also be able to use one of the tablet’s preloaded applications to make service appointments.
“They are trying to position themselves as a modern, in-touch, technologically savvy brand. It is the sort of innovation you would expect from BMW or Mercedes, but not Hyundai,” said Mike Bloxham, director of insight and research at Ball State University’s Center for Media Design.
Known for budget cars such as the $9,970 Accent and the $14,145 Elantra, Hyundai is trying to break into the high-end market with the Equus, which the manufacturer compares with the Lexus LS460 and Mercedes-Benz S550 sedans. The three are similar in size and have engines with about the same power: around 380 horsepower.
The Equus will sell for $50,000 to $60,000, according to Hyundai executives, with the exact amount to be announced closer to launch. An iPad is $499. Will be nteresting to see how the high-end Hyundai fares against a Lexus or M-B.