Hyundai's Car Lineup Is Better Than Ever
And There's More In Store For 2021
It's easy to say that South Korea never used to be known for their cars, and that the ones they were known for.. were junk. But that has all changed in recent years. South Korea, or more specifically, Hyundai, has risen from the dead of their past, and is now at the forefront of modern automobile manufacturing. Here's a look at their past, their present, and their future. I hope you enjoy.
"Hyundai Elantra GLS 2.0 CRDi 2005" by RL GNZLZ is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
Newspress Australia - US Model Show
While most car companies are proud to tell you about their classic cars, to show you how far they've come, Hyundai has been far less inviting, as their past is, as Jeremy Clarkson would say "A bit rubbish".
At the turn of the century, Hyundai was selling the woeful Santamo, the lifeless and spiritless Atos, and the absolutely appalling Getz.
Now let it be known that I have reason to hate these hunks of metal, and that it is not pure prejudice. It seemed as if Hyundai lacked the apathy, and skill, to design cars that were actually good. And while they did make some good cars, they were either released into the wrong market, or simply, were cars that nobody asked for. Take the Equus for example. The Equus alone was not a bad car. Instead, it was released into an unsuspecting world who rejected it.
The first generation model had mild success in Korea, but once it went off sale, that was that - or so the public thought. Regardless of whether they wanted it or not, the Equus was coming back - and this time, Hyundai intended to sell it to the world. Yet the world was unsure of how good a luxury sedan from a small South Korean company would be. It was only available in Russia and South Korea, but several were imported to the US. The reason it failed was because of the fact that Hyundai positioned themselves as a low budget, family friendly carmaker, and were not considered to be the makers of luxury cars, especially at the time. Furthermore, the public did not see the Equus as a viable alternative to an Audi A8 or Mercedes S Class, which is what the Equus was trying to take on.
Overall their lineup was bland, and they made some really bad design choices. For example, in the Getz, the side of the dashboard was simple forgotten, as it looks like a block of plastic was simply drilled into place, and left as it was. That, along with several other design issues, was the reason for it's eventual demise in 2011, as Hyundai failed to update the nearly 10 year old cars' design, and people stopped buying them. The Getz was replaced with the i10, which has not done anywhere near as well as the Getz did, in the early years of it's sale.
It seemed Hyundai was in a bad spot.
But this would all change in 2015..
In 2015, Hyundai gave their popular Tucson (ix35), a much needed facelift. With this, came slightly punchier engines, and a far more simplified interior. This changed everything. The Tucson went from being a low budget family runabout, to an award winning kin-mobile, quite literally overnight. Soon enough, each car was given a major facelift, which further proved to the world that Hyundai was ready to be a worthy adversary for Toyota.
I remember seeing an advert for the Tucson back in 2015, and I thought "Wow - that car looks way better than it used to", and I was almost sold on the prospect of buying the car. I was not alone. The European and US markets saw a 28% and 34% increase in sales in 2015, respectively. From then on, the numbers only went up. And while 2020 saw a slight decrease in sales, few guess why. Hyundai also gave the i30 a well earned facelift, which also boosted their sales in yet another region of the car industry; small cars. Even models like the Veloster were given a facelift eventually, which further represented Hyundai's endeavour to change their appearance in the car world.
Tucson Sales Figures
Hyundai has become a global leader in FCEV and PHEV experimentation, with their IONIQ and NEXO range becoming increasingly popular with the press. The South Korean car company is one of the only car companies in the world to offer a hybrid, electric and fuel cell car in their lineup. While Hyundai's future is definitely green, whether or not the world will choose them, is another story altogether. 2021 will see the release of the Elantra N, the new Sonata, the Nexo and the IONIQ 5. I'm most excited for the release of the Elantra N, as it might become a rival of the Kia Stinger, and Alfa Romeo Giulia. Only time will tell.
While Hyundai are doing very well now, they still have a lot to learn. For example, the interiors of new Hyundai's are filled with way too much piano black plastic, and the cloth on their seats really feels low quality. Other than that, they are doing really well now - who knows what the future holds!
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"File:2018 Hyundai i30 SE Nav T-GDi 1.3 Front.jpg" by Vauxford is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
"Hyundai i30 1.6 CRDi Style (II) – Frontansicht, 14. Juli 2013, Münster" by M 93: „Dein Nordrhein-Westfalen“ is licensed under CC BY 2.0
"File:2018 Hyundai Tucson Premium SE CRDi 2WD facelift 2.0 Front.jpg" by Vauxford is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
"Hyundai Tucson" by MSVG is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Editor, Joshua DowlingNational Motoring, and Joshua Dowling. “2021 Hyundai New Cars: CarAdvice.” CarAdvice.com, 22 Dec. 2020, www.caradvice.com.au/909571/2021-hyundai-new-cars/.
“Hyundai Tucson.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 20 Jan. 2021, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyundai_Tucson.