"These unnecessary requirements amount to economic coercion on the part of HMA and GMA and significantly limit the dealers' ability to innovate," said the letter, signed by the presidents of dealer associations from Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia.
While retailers have issues with program details such as vehicle pricing and information-sharing, the major sticking point comes down to facility upgrades, the dealer associations said in the letter.
Since July, Hyundai and Genesis executives have held meetings with the national dealer advisory panels of both brands, including a session in mid-September, to hash out some of the differences. Dealers say some progress has been made.
Peter Lanzavecchia, a member of the Genesis advisory panel and owner of Genesis of Cherry Hill and Burns Hyundai in Marlton, N.J., said the programs are really about investing in the long-term success of the brands.
"While it's easy to say, 'Wait, there's a pandemic, we've got to postpone this,' we've already postponed it for six months," Lanzavecchia said. "The parent company is investing billions and billions of dollars in Hyundai and Genesis."
Randy Parker, vice president of national sales for Hyundai Motor America, said the Hyundai brand has been gaining retail market share this year and has its strongest lineup of vehicles ever. Improving brand image will help fuel that trend.
"As we enter the next phase of recovery, we are reinstating our facilities program but will continue to remain flexible as the market changes," he said. "We believe strongly that these investments will pay off for our dealers."