Years of pouring resources into the Middle East are paying off for Hyundai, particularly in sales of its high-end models.

The Korea Herald reported sales of the Grandeur, Genesis and Equus rose 5.5% to 7,930 vehicles in the first five months this year from the same period last year.

The Grandeur was the biggest seller at 5,676 vehicles, while sales of the Genesis and Equus were 1,949 and 214, respectively. The Equus and Grandeur were introduced to the region in 2006.

Despite the high tariffs on import brands, Hyundai told the newspaper it had been “betting big on rich people in the Middle East” and pouring in marketing resources in recent years.

Since its entry into the region back in 1976, Hyundai’s car sales, including commercial vehicles, exceeded the 300,000 mark for the first time last year.

In April, Hyundai was the top car brand in Israel with a market share of 17% but dominated 47% and 59% of markets in Jordan and Syria, respectively.

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