The answer to all of this is a resounding “no” (well, we’ll see for the space program) because it’s actually inspired by a circuit northeast of Seoul in Inje. The manufacturer affectionately calls it “the Korean Nurburgring” and even the Speedium’s color name – Inje Green – is borrowed from the circuit because, according to Genesis, it reflects the mountainous region the circuit inhabits. It might be the party line, but anyone familiar with the Nurburgring probably knows that it’s often called ‘the green hell’ and it seems too much of a coincidence for that color name not to be a cheeky allusion to it. .
Of course, this is all secondary to the fact that the Speedium Concept, the brainchild of World Car of the Year Personality and Genesis Creative Director Luc Donckerwolke and his team of designers, is a stunning beauty. For those unfamiliar with Mr. Donckerwolke: he’s led some of the most legendary car designs over the past few decades, including the Bentley Flying Spur, Lamborghini Gallardo and even the Audi R8 Le Mans racing prototype, to name a few. to name a few.
Surprisingly, however, it was actually not one of those projects that Mr. Donckerwolke mentioned when we asked him what inspired him to design the Speedium, but something much further down the automotive canon. : the Shelby Daytona Coupe, a V8-powered road racer from the 1960s.
“I’m someone who basically grew up with a hunger that I couldn’t satisfy about classic vehicles and race cars,” he said. “That’s why we have a lot of muscle in this car but it’s (done) in a way that’s not overdone, but it’s very athletic.”
Sure, but I find it hard not to label the wheels and headlights that wrap all the way around the grille and up to the leading edge of the doors as “exaggerated.” The overall shape, however, is elegant and the kamm back and ducktail spoiler are very reminiscent not only of the Daytona, but also of other classic models such as the Ferrari 250 GTO or the Alfa Romeo Giulia TZ.
Which stands to reason, because while there aren’t any plans yet for a production version of the Speedium, it does indicate the direction in which Genesis EVs are headed. To do that, you need futuristic elements, but at the same time, since it’s a luxury brand, it needs to have a certain stance or details, or a general attitude about it that speaks to a luxury car buyer.
“We always start with what the customer wants and that sets us apart from other brands,” Donckerwolke remarked.
It doesn’t stop at the design either, but also at the performance and handling of the cars.
“It would be easy to stay in the past, but we have to deal with it,” Donckerwolke said. “We have to admit that we have a new powertrain and it has a big advantage, something we could never have imagined.
Like the low-slung look of the car itself, one of those big advantages he talks about is the fact that EVs tend to have a lower center of gravity than their ICE counterparts due to their heavy sunken batteries. deep in their floors. This is advantageous for SUVs and CUVs that need to have tall bodies to accommodate their passengers, but also for sports cars or high flyers like this to keep the body in check when moving quickly around corners. Donckerwolke himself admits to driving smoother in an electric car – both on track and on the open road – and keeping cleaner lines around corners.
“You won’t make up for not having a V8 ringing in your ears, (but) it’s about transforming the way you drive in a smoother way.”
So while we’re not hoping for a production version of the extraordinary – and it’s extraordinary, by name – Speedium Concept, Genesis has been very clear in illustrating that it represents the next step in the evolution brand style. . It’s a symbiosis between Donckerwolke’s design team and the brand’s e-GMP platform engineering team, as both teams were able to start on the ground floor to ensure that their ideas would come together. This allows the design team to take certain liberties that might otherwise conflict with the facts and figures, nuts and bolts put forward by the engineers.
It also means that each Genesis model can adhere to the brand’s styling identity, but get their own tweaks to differentiate themselves, even if they ride on a shared platform.
So while the Speedium remains something of a design study, it represents a bright prospect for the burgeoning brand, one that’s on a trajectory we can’t wait to follow.