Hyundai Overtakes GM as Official NFL Auto Sponsor

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Hyundai will be the new official auto sponsor of the NFL, kicking General Motors to the sidelines after almost fifteen years. Here at your Chicagoland Hyundai dealer, we couldn’t be more excited. The Korean automaker is looking to bolster its brand image among US consumers following a huge upswing in quality and reliability over the last few years. The brand ranked fourth in the J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Study last month and its sister brand, Kia, ranked second behind Porsche. With such big gains, Hyundai is now not only equal footing with its competitors – it’s leading the pack.

The four-year deal (which officially kicks off on September 10) gives Hyundai the rights to use the NFL logo and brand in its ad spots, and gives Hyundai one of the top marketing spots in America’s most popular sport. This means that Hyundai will now be a part of all major NFL events, including the combine, draft, kickoff, playoffs, and–of course–the Super Bowl. Hyundai will also provide promotional vehicles for certain league events.

“We are huge football fans at Hyundai and feel there is no better venue to reach consumers, increase consideration and tell the Hyundai brand story,” Hyundai Motor America CEO Dave Zuchowski said in a statement. “We can’t wait to show the NFL’s 188 million fans the great design, advanced technologies, dynamic performance and numerous safety features within the Hyundai lineup.”

GM isn’t completely out of the picture, though. The automaker (which held primary auto sponsor rights from 2001 through last year at a cost of $25 million per year) will continue airing TV commercials during NFL games and promoting its brand at games. GM used the lead spot in recent years to push its GMC brand, which prominently features pickup trucks and SUVs.

“GMC has decided not to renew its National Football League sponsorship,” GM said in a press release. “We value our relationship with the NFL and its fans, but have decided to focus our sponsorship resources in other areas in the future.”

The financial aspects of the deal weren’t announced but whatever they’re paying, the contract comes at a great moment for Hyundai. While Hyundai vehicle quality can’t be denied, brand identity is perhaps not as strong as it could be. A partnership with the NFL could help ameliorate this snag in Hyundai’s ascent to top dog. Momentum is currently strong but Hyundai’s lineup relies heavily on small and mid-size cars, while many consumers are gravitating towards bigger vehicles due to cheap gas prices. Of course, gas prices could change in an instant and conscientious buyers are more than aware of that.

Join us down at Rosen Hyundai to celebrate this exciting news! Next year’s Super Bowl MVP will most likely be presented with a Hyundai when the big game rolls around. Stop by Rosen to test any of our MVP-worthy models today.

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