Car Craziness

Car Craziness

Here's why Hyundai built a 300kW minibus

There isn’t really a market for high-performance vans. Although Mercedes-Benz does a tidy trade by producing an AMG version of practically all its vehicles, there is no V63 AMG.

Same thing with VW. They have an established van legacy, but you’ll never see a Transporter R. Despite this, Hyundai has shown unexpected initiative in producing a very potent H1 N - a 300kW minibus version of the Hyundai H1 for sale.

Ingenuity spilling over

The Korean automotive brand has made a serious effort of increasing its performance car offering in the last few years, with the i30 N hot hatchback. Now it would appear that some of that ingenuity has spilt over into Hyundai’s H1 people carrier.

Commissioned as a one-off concept by Hyundai Australia, the H1 N shows that rear-wheel drive and a very long wheelbase can arc some ridiculous drifts.

Distinguished in appearance by its N-specification light blue finish (a hue which is the signature colour for Hyundai’s i30 N hatch) and custom moulded front splitter, the H1 N is not merely a show pony.

It rolls on 19-inch wheels from the i30 N and there are electronic dampers at each wheel corner, to help stabilize its substantial weight transfer during high-load cornering.

Power and comfort

Powering the H1 N is a 3.5-litre twin-turbocharged V6 petrol engine, which boasts a peak power output beyond 300kW and manages to send 555Nm to the rear wheels. An adapted version of Hyundai’s eight-speed automatic transmission controls the tempo of the performance.

A limited-slip rear differential enables the H1 N to do what no other van can and drift with aplomb. Even more remarkable is that if you have this H1 N loaded with a full complement of eight passengers, it possesses perfect 50/50 weight distribution.

To ensure the comfort of its passengers, this hugely potent H1 N has semi-bucket front seats, whilst the second- and third-row benches are retrimmed in a combination of suede and leather.

Those changes in seat upholstery material should theoretically make passengers less likely to slide about when the H1 N is, in fact, sliding about. But where did Hyundai source the idea of building an overpowered, drift-capable version of its H1?

It all started with an innocent April Fool’s, created by Hyundai’s German office, which announced a fictitious H1 N van project earlier this year.

Hyundai’s Australian staff decided they could make the German office’s vision a reality and as such the H1 N was born. As a proof of concept, the H1 N is ridiculous but also shows that Hyundai is developing a sense of fun within is design teams.

If you’re looking for the H1 in South Africa - simply visit your nearest Group 1 Hyundai dealership.

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Review: 2018 Hyundai i20

We take a road trip in the popular hatchback from Hyundai.

Hyundai's American division stopped offering the hatchback variant of the i20 in 2017. Buyers seeking an Accent with a fifth door instead of a trunk lid are now encouraged to take a look at the Kona, which is more of a tall, rugged-looking hatchback than a true SUV.

The Accent hatchback that we would have gotten had the model returned to American showrooms for a new generation exists in many global markets as the Hyundai i20 for sale. We took a 2018 Hyundai i20 on a trek across Norway to find out.

What is it?

Pardon our dust; Norway's wet, often unpredictable climate makes for beautiful panoramas but it seriously complicates the task of keeping a car clean for photos. Imagine that the sheet metal is dry and squeaky-clean and you'll notice the i20 falls in line with Hyundai's recent design language without completely copying an existing car like the bigger Elantra GT (sold as the i30 in Europe), the smaller i10, or even the Accent. All of the main styling cues that define a Hyundai in 2018 are accounted for, including the elongated headlights and the cascading grille. The proportions mirror what you'd expect from a car jettisoned in the same market segment as the Ford Fiesta. Designers jumped on the now-departed bandwagon of blacking out the C-pillars to create the illusion of a floating roof. The i20 lacks the Kona's sheer boldness, for better or worse. It's just stylish enough to avoid being labelled boring or stylistically offensive.

In terms of positioning, it's to the Elantra GT what the Fiesta is to the Focus and the Honda Fit is to the Civic. It's not the smallest Hyundai, though. That distinction goes to the aforementioned i10, a truly tiny four-door hatchback positioned as an alternative to the Volkswagen up!, the Peugeot 108, and the Renault Twingo, among other models buyers could mistake for a Matchbox car.

Pricing varies from market to market, and exchange rates are never as straightforward in real life as Google's widget suggests. Get accurate and competitive i20 for sale prices from Group 1 Hyundai.

The interior

The i20 offers space for five passengers, though we'd recommend saving the middle seat for carrying small children or a six-pack of beer and only cramming an adult in it as a last resort. Stick to four or fewer and the interior is spacious considering the car's relatively small footprint. Hyundai scattered several storage bins around the cabin, including one in each front door that's big enough to store a 16-ounce water bottle. We didn't feel cramped during our week-long trip with two people- your author included - on board and everything we needed for a long day's worth of driving (like an MP3 player and a cup of coffee) was never far from reach. The trunk is big enough for a large suitcase plus a few smaller items like a backpack, snacks, and a camera bag.

Many of the parts within the driver's line of sight and touch are made from materials that really aren't bad at all considering the i20's price point. It's a breath of fresh air in this segment. Some bits and pieces feel cheap - for example, the bottom parts of the front door panels might as well be made from melted Playmobil sets - but that's par for the course on this end of the new car spectrum, we can't fault Hyundai.

Nearly every aspect of the infotainment system is as average as it gets, including the resolution and the response time. The software is fairly easy to navigate because there are hard buttons on either side of the colour touch screen for quick access to functions like the radio, the media options, and the navigation interface. We liked that the menus are relatively shallow, you don't have to dive six levels deep to program a multi-destination itinerary into the navigation. However, zooming in and out of the map requires using the knob on the right side of the screen, which isn't nearly as user-friendly as the pinch-to-zoom motion we've all gotten used to in recent years thanks largely to Google and Apple.

We noted several other annoying traits in the i20, including some that we can likely chalk up to personal preference. We absolutely never agreed with the automatic wipers on when to wipe the windshield. And, on an oddly similar note, the automatic headlights took a little longer to turn on.

The drive

Our tester came with a turbocharged, 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine tuned to make 99 horsepower at 4,500 rpm and 127 pound-feet of torque from 1,500 to 4,000 rpm. It spins the front wheels through a five-speed manual transmission. Hyundai offers a 1.2-liter four-cylinder as an entry-level engine, while the list of options available to buyers who select the triple includes a dual-clutch automatic gearbox.

We've rarely praised three-cylinder engines. Many of the ones available in Europe make the car they're stuffed in feel like a 25-year old riding lawn mower that needs a tune-up. They sound like a loud, angry sewing machine. They're poky and hate to be rushed. They vibrate like a Massey-Ferguson 135 at idle. From this vantage point, what's there to like?

Hyundai's triple sings a different tune. There's no mistaking it for a four-cylinder at start-up, especially on a cold morning, but the noise quickly quiets down and settles into a much more tolerable note. It doesn't wobble when it idles, or if it does it refrains from sharing its vibrations with the occupants.

Our trip took us from Oslo to Bergen and back with countless detours and zigzags between the two cities. Driving in Norway is bittersweet. The roads are scenic, well-paved, engaging, and we rarely encountered heavy traffic. It sounds like the Norwegians should put a Miata on their flag, right?

That's what we thought, too, until we realized speed cameras grow on the side of the road like mushrooms, police officers watch the road network like a hawk circling around a prey, and the fines for speeding are eye-wateringly expensive. We reluctantly set the cruise control to 80 kilometers per hour (50 miles per hour; the speed limit across most of Norway), sat back, and enjoyed the view. The i20 obliged. The 1.0-liter is happy to cruise along in fifth gear and its torque got us up moderately steep hills without asking for a downshift into fourth. Hyundai did a good job of spreading out the gears and every cog has its purpose. We were never tempted to skip second or fourth like we've done while accelerating in other comparably-sized cars we've driven recently.

Our consolation prize was the quick realization that we wouldn't have had a blast behind the wheel even if we had decided to throw caution to the wind and hoon the hell out of the i20 for a few miles. There is zero steering feel. You turn the steering wheel, the car changes direction, but what happens between the two - and any information the tires pick up from the pavement - is a complete and utter mystery. That's perfectly fine, the i20 is not sold as a driver's car and it doesn't need to be on.

Ease of use is the i20's mission in life. It comes into its own in cities. The clutch pedal is super light, the gear lever is easy to operate, and the effortless steering makes manoeuvring in a tight parking garage or between the tour buses beached in downtown Oslo a breeze. The suspension soaks up small imperfections in the road but lets bigger bumps filter through. It's comfortable, though, and it keeps body roll in check. We found the brakes to be adequate for every situation we needed to stop in.

The triple has one more trick up its sleeve. According to the trip computer, we averaged about 17 kilometers per liter over the course of our roughly 1,100-mile trip. The i20's impressive fuel economy was a real boon. Don't assume the fuel is cheap in an oil-rich nation like Norway. It's actually slightly more expensive than in a country like France that has never seen a nodding donkey.

The verdict

The Hyundai i20 keeps its promise of delivering easy, stress-free motoring without making anyone travelling in the car feel like they've been sent to a four-wheeled jail cell. We wouldn't hesitate to recommend the i20 to anyone seeking a small, affordable car, whether it's a college student, a young couple, or an older driver who needs a city roundabout.

Review: 2018 Hyundai i20Review: 2018 Hyundai i20

Review: 2018 Hyundai i20

Review: 2018 Hyundai i20

Review: 2018 Hyundai i20

Review: 2018 Hyundai i20

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Prices announced for new 2020 Hyundai i10

The all-new Hyundai i10 city car gets a major tech and safety kit boost.

The third-generation i10 model will go on sale in the UK in January 2020, where it will rival the Volkswagen up!, Citroen C1 and Toyota Aygo.

Standard equipment for the new Hyundai i10 includes 35.5 cm steel wheels with hub caps, manual air conditioning, a DAB radio with 9,65cm display, front and rear electric windows, electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors, cruise control, a leather-trimmed steering wheel and Bluetooth connectivity.

Hyundai also boasts that the new i10 will offer one of the most comprehensive safety equipment packages in the city car class. As standard, buyers get autonomous emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane-keeping assist, hill-start assist, a driver attention alert sensor and a tyre pressure monitoring system.

Hyundai i10 - Frankfurt front

Upgrades over the base-model include 15-inch alloy wheels, a rear-view camera, a four-speaker stereo system and an eight-inch infotainment system with voice recognition and support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Hyundai’s range-topping i10 Premium adds 40.6 cm alloy wheels, uprated halogen headlamps, LED daytime running lights, front fog lamps and rear privacy glass. Inside, buyers get heated front seats, a heated steering wheel and honeycomb trim for the dashboard, door cards and gear lever surround.

Buyers of the i10 Premium can also choose from a range of optional extras, including Hyundai’s Tech Pack which adds a wireless smartphone charger, satellite navigation and an intelligent speed limit warning system. Two-tone paint can be specified, while metallic or pearlescent paint costs an additional as well.Two petrol engines are available: a 1.0-litre three-cylinder or an 1.2-litre four-cylinder. The former unit is available on all models in the range and produces 66bhp and 96Nm of torque. It has respective economy and emissions figures of 56.5mpg and 101g/km of CO2 under the WLTP test cycle.

The more powerful 1.20-litre unit is only available on SE Connect models and above. The engine produces 83bhp and 118Nm of torque, offering claimed economy and emissions figures of 55.4mpg and 105g/km of CO2 respectively. Both engines can also be specced with either a five-speed manual or a five-speed automatic.

New 2020 Hyundai i10: market and design

The market for entry-level city runabouts has shrunk rapidly in recent months, with the Ford Ka+, Renault Twingo and Suzuki Celerio all being axed from UK showrooms. But Hyundai shows no sign of leaving the segment any time soon, with the recent launch of what it’s calling the most hi-tech city car ever.

Hyundai i10 - Frankfurt rear
Hyundai’s Volkswagen up! rival is completely new from top to bottom. It sits 20mm lower and 20mm wider than the second-generation i10, while elements like the cascading grille, complete with slimmer headlights and LED spot lamps on higher-specced models, give it a more upmarket look.

The newcomer is just 5mm longer than its predecessor, but its wheelbase has grown by 40mm, pushing the wheels further out towards each corner. Hyundai says this not only gives its smallest model a sportier look but improves cabin space, too. Rear legroom has increased to a point where Hyundai claims that four adults will find more than enough space inside – impressive for a car in this class. At a push, there’s room for a fifth occupant as well.

At 252 litres, the boot is exactly the same size as the old model’s, and it’s a class-leading figure. A false floor can be raised up to create a flat loading area when the seats are folded down, or lowered to make the most of the space available. The new dashboard design carries over certain elements from the old model, such as the raised position of the gear lever. Others, like the slim central air vents, are inspired by the Kona crossover.

Hyundai i10 - cabin studio

However, the most significant update for the i10 comes in the shape of the infotainment system. The housing for the new eight-inch touchscreen display, which is largely similar to the unit used in the i30, flows in one continuous sweep towards the instrument panel and features physical shortcut keys around the outside.

The system is linked to Hyundai’s Bluelink telematics app, which allows i10 drivers to use their smartphone to search for parking spaces, fuel stations and points of interest, and then send the results directly to the car’s navigation system. In a class where rivals such as the up! offer little more than a smartphone cradle, a full-size infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto gives the i10 an edge.

Finally, while there aren’t any immediate plans for an all-electric version of the i10 when pressed, Hyundai insiders wouldn’t rule out the prospect for the future.

If you’re looking for a Hyundai i10 for sale - simply visit Group 1 Hyundai, or browse their available i10 models online.

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2020 Hyundai Tucson Review and Buying Guide | Following the path

Everything you need to know about pricing, specs, features, fuel economy and safety

The Hyundai Tucson sticks to its guns this year, still positioned as a value proposition in the compact crossover class. It may not be as shiny and new as it was for the redesigned 2016 model year, but the Hyundai Tucson demo still manages to be an attractive choice due to its premium features and handsome curves.

Hyundai managed to sneak in a mid-cycle update for the 2019 model year to keep things fresh, too. This makes it a slightly more enticing option now, but the large swath of new competitors out there makes for an especially difficult choice in this segment. We would never call the Tucson the most dynamic or fun-to-drive crossover, but it does offer up a handy bit of utility and comfort at a relatively low price point.

What’s new with Tucson for 2020?

Hyundai didn't change much for the 2020 model year. Four colors get swapped out: Stellar Silver replacing Molten Silver, Magnetic Force replacing Coliseum Grey, Winter White replacing Dazzling White, and Cream White replacing White Pearl. The only other modification is leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob expanding availability down to the Sport trim.

What’s the Tucson’s interior and in-car technology like?

The design and layout of the interior is functional, all the way up to the most expensive "Ultimate" trim level.

As all modern Hyundai infotainment systems go, this one is easy to use and relatively simple, but it isn’t the prettiest to look at. Both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are standard on the cheapest of Tucsons, because Hyundai makes its 7-inch touchscreen standard equipment. An 8-inch screen with navigation and upgraded audio system is added to the Limited and Ultimate trims. Every trim but the base SE makes heated front seats standard, too. The rear seats are heated on the top Ultimate trim.

How big is Tucson?

The 2020 Hyundai Tucson fits neatly into the ever-growing compact crossover segment. It measures 176.2 inches in overall length, which makes it one of the smaller vehicles among its competitors. It’s also lacking in ground clearance compared to others, coming in at just 6.4 inches. While that’s not ideal for mud or deep snow, it does make getting in and out of the Tucson easier.

Legroom and cargo capacity are average, but the cargo area is well-shaped and the full space is usable. The rear seats fold down flat, leaving you a well proportioned and natural loading area for heavy lifts. Space in the second row is plenty for most folks, so longer trips should remain comfortable for those relegated to the back seats.

What’s Tucson’s performance and fuel economy?

There are two engine options available for the 2020 Hyundai Tucson. The base engine is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder that makes 161 horsepower and 150 pound-feet of torque. A 2.4-liter four-cylinder that makes 181 horsepower and 175 pound-feet of torque is standard on SEL and above. Both the engines are connected to six-speed automatic transmissions. We’ve only driven a Tucson with the bigger four-cylinder engine and found the power to be on the lower side of adequate. The less powerful 2.0-liter will just feel even slower. We weren’t disappointed in the performance from the smooth and relatively responsive six-speed torque converter automatic.

Front-wheel drive is standard, but all-wheel drive is optional. The best fuel economy is achieved by the front-wheel drive Tucson with the 2.0-liter four-cylinder. It’s rated at 23 mpg city, 30 mpg highway and 26 mpg combined. That drops to 21/26/23 mpg when you go for the top-of-the-line 2.4-liter with all-wheel drive. These numbers aren’t best-in-class, but we managed to match the EPA numbers in real world driving on the latter.

What’s the Tucson like to drive?

The Hyundai Tucson is generally pleasant to drive around town during a test drive. Its handling is adequate, and while it’s not especially maneuverable at low speeds, it never feels big when winding through tight parking lots. The front-driver has a tendency to torque steer at low speeds, like those encountered when taking a 90-degree turn after a stop sign, which is why we'd recommend the Magna-sourced all-wheel drive and its accompanying torque-vectoring system. Capable of shunting torque to the wheel with the most grip, the system proved sure-footed. Through the turns, we were able to feel the system at work, shifting torque as needed. There's also a lock mode that forces a perfect 50-50 split between front and rear for low-traction situations. Comfort is normal crossover fare — it soaks up bumps well, and body motions are kept in check.

We do miss the spunky turbocharged engine from before; the new, larger naturally-aspirated four-cylinder doesn’t provide much passing power once you’re up to speed. There was no snow on the ground when we tested a 2019 Tucson, but the optional all-wheel drive system should keep things moving forward in the fluffy stuff.

What more can I read about the Tucson?

When the car came out for the 2016 model year at Group 1 Hyundai, it was a big deal for Hyundai, which promised a unique redesigned Tucson and more fun driving characteristics to help it stand out.

What are Tucson’s safety equipment and crash ratings?

Hyundai makes a few driver assistance options standard, but there are even more available as you hike up the trim levels. The base SE has forward collision avoidance and lane-keeping assist. Step up to the Value, and you get blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert. Adaptive cruise control and auto emergency braking with pedestrian detection become standard when you step up to the Night and Ultimate trims.

The Tucson has received excellent safety ratings from both the IIHS and NHTSA. It’s a Top Safety Pick+ from the IIHS, but the score only applies to Tucsons with the best LED headlights and optional auto emergency braking. It scored Good in all the major crashworthiness categories. The NHTSA gave it a 5-star overall rating, with nearly every breakout crash category receiving a similar 5-star rating.

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2019 Hyundai Kona Ultimate Review: Short And Stout

Hyundai has gone on an SUV blitz. For 2020, the South Korean automaker will have six different SUVs in its lineup, ranging from the exceptionally small and cute Venue to the impressively large and in charge Palisade.

The 2019 Hyundai Kona is one size above the Venue and considered subcompact in size. The relatively new nameplate (2018 was its first model year) has joined an ultra-crowded and competitive segment where vehicles like the Honda HR-V, Subaru Crosstrek, and cross-country rival Kia Soul have dominated.

What the Kona offers is unique, though polarizing, styling and an impressive cabal of safety features that are tough to match. It also flubs some of the fundamentals that its competitors get right.


Truth be told, we applaud Hyundai and its designers for making the Kona look unique. While the design is interesting, it’s also busy, with a lot of intakes and vents that go nowhere and do nothing.

For instance, the horizontal line above the main grille that appears to be an intake is just for show and allows no air through. The "body cladding" around the Kona’s lower half, which the designers use effectively to project a rough-and-tumble image, is actually painted like the rest of the body panels and will suffer scrapes and scratches just the same, as opposed to typical body cladding that’s unpainted dark plastic and meant to take abuse that would damage paint. At least, that’s what we see on the Ultimate trim, and it’s also this way on the Iron Man edition.

It’s like Hyundai’s designers took many of today’s cliched styling cues and collected them on the Kona. It’s got the separated low- and high-beam lights from the Juke, the busy lines of the CH-R, the ultra-short rear overhang of the Crosstrek, and the floating roof effect from so many SUVs on sale today. Altogether, it’s a little much.

The Kona’s interior, though, is executed in typical Korean fashion, which is to say very well. The screens are large, the materials feel above average in quality, and the design is functional and aesthetically neutral. The three highest trims – the Limited, Ultimate, and Iron Man Edition – all get standard leather seating, as well.

Comfort⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀

The Kona is a reasonably comfortable vehicle, particularly for front seat passengers. The cabin does allow a fair amount of noise to enter, particularly from the engine bay, but that’s a common fault of affordable SUVs like these.

Subcompact SUVs aren’t known for having lots of rear legroom. The Kona’s rear headroom is more competitive at 37.8 inches, but still falls behind the Crosstrek at 38.0 inches, the HR-V at 38.3 inches, and the voluminous Kia Soul at 39.6 inches.

With the rear seats up, 19.2 cubic feet of space is available, and when the rear seats are folded, only 45.8 cubes are available.

Technology & Connectivity⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀

Korean automakers are well known for offering highly competent infotainment tech in their cars, and the Kona is no exception. While lesser trims get a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment display with no navigation, the Ultimate (and even higher-spec Iron Man Edition) get an 8.0-inch touchscreen with navigation. Powering the screen is the latest version of Hyundai’s Blue Link infotainment software, which, while not bringing much new to the table, nails the basics such as having fast response times, good-looking graphics, and easy-to-navigate menus.

The Kona Ultimate, though, is well configured with tech beyond just its infotainment system. Of course, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are present, but the Ultimate also comes standard with a 4.2-inch color information display between its gauges, a head-up display (the kind that raises a small acrylic panel ahead of the driver on which to project information), wireless smartphone charging, and an upgraded Infinity audio system with eight speakers.

Performance & Handling⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀

We don’t set a high bar for vehicles like this in regards to performance and handling. Really, all an economical subcompact crossover SUV needs to be fun to drive is a competent suspension, willing powertrain, and quick and accurate steering. Unfortunately, the Kona lacks at least two out of three.

The Kona’s biggest issue is its handling due to suspension tuning that lacks both firmness and control. It’s not just that the springs feel soft and there’s body roll, which they are and there is, but also that the rebound from suspension movement lacks control. Perhaps the suspension’s damping isn’t strong enough, because often times it felt unsettled after big body movements like hard turns and stops.

The Kona’s turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine produces 175 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. That’s enough power to make this 3,062-pound small SUV feel on the faster side of the segment. Yes, it’s faster than it is slow, but not quick. For that, it would need the turbo 1.6 from its corporate cousin, the Kia Soul, which produces more than 200 hp.

Nevertheless, it’s not the Kona’s engine that gets in the way of fun, but rather its seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. This transmission lacks refinement, especially starting from a stop, like at a stoplight, or shifting from Reverse to Drive. A twitchiness and jerk occurs in situations like these that genuinely had us wondering if there were a problem with the transmission.

All that said, performance and handling generally aren’t high on the list of must-haves for people who shop little SUVs like the Kona. For those without the ability to discern well- from great-handling vehicles, the Kona’s driving dynamics will likely go unnoticed.

Safety⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀

The Kona has remarkable safety bona fides for a vehicle that starts under R200,000, and they’re even better on a fully loaded example like this Ultimate. For starters, it earns the highest possible crash test ratings from both the government-backed National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the private Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The Kona earns a full five-star overall rating on the NHTSA battery of tests and a coveted Top Safety Pick+ rating from the IIHS. The latter is particularly impressive, as IIHS included a new, extra stringent requirement for high-quality forward lighting, which some vehicles costing twice as much as the Kona don’t meet.

Next, all of the Kona’s trim levels come with advanced safety technology such as lane-keeping assist and automatic emergency braking. Excluding the base SE trim level, the rest of the Kona lineup also gets blind-spot monitoring and rear-cross-traffic alert systems as standard equipment. And finally, our top-of-the-line Ultimate tester adds pedestrian detection, parking sensors, LED headlights (also standard on the Limited), and automatic high-beam headlights. Again, this sort of cocoon of safety isn’t common on economical vehicles like the Kona, and Hyundai has set the bar high for its competitors.

Fuel Economy⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀

The Kona’s combined fuel economy, as rated by the Environmental Protection Agency, is 30 miles per gallon. Along with a city rating of 28 mpg and a highway rating of 32 mpg, Hyundai’s little crossover does just well enough to earn a high score in this category. At 30 mpg combined, though, the Kona’s fuel economy with front-wheel drive is average among its competitors.

To test drive the Kona - visit your nearest Group 1 Hyundai dealership today!

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Hyundai Isn't Giving up on Sedans

We found this great article and thought we just had to share it with our fellow Hyundai enthusiasts. If you need to find out where your nearest Hyundai dealerships are - click the link to check out the Hyundai dealerships. You could also just visit a Group 1 Hyundai dealership near you!

During the Nurburgring 24, I was afforded some time to speak with the local German car company Hyundai and two of its executives, Albert Biermann, Head of R&D for Hyundai, Kia, and Genesis, and Thomas Schemera, Head of Global Product Strategy & Design for Hyundai, Kia, and Genesis. Both of these gentlemen are former BMW execs who made the transition to the Korean brands, and their influence has already been seen in many ways, including the addition of the Hyundai N performance car sub-brand. It was pretty clear that both are enthusiastic about the work they are doing, and it was an excellent opportunity to hear about the future of Hyundai straight from the source.

So, the context of all this discussion is that there is a 24 hour race going on outside the window, there are four American car writers sitting in round table with each Hyundai exec individually. We ostensibly had 10 minutes to ask whatever we wanted to know about the future of Hyundai, though that stretched into 30 minutes plus for both of them, annnnnnnd go...

(Full Disclosure: Hyundai brought me to Germany to watch its Veloster N and i30N race cars take on the field, do a bit of test driving in some road cars, and eat and stay gratis.)

Here’s everything I learned spending an hour with Albert Bierman and Thomas Schemera.

Hyundai Isn’t Giving up on Sedans

Illustration for article titled Hyundai Isn't Giving up on Sedans and Neither Am I
I am personally a big fan of sedans, hatchbacks, and wagons, but there are fewer of them seemingly every day. Instead of kicking them to the curb, Hyundai has doubled down on sedans, giving us a new Accent just last year, and a new Sonata this year.

Thomas Schemera: "If you ask my personal opinion, [Ford, FCA, etc. dropping sedans in favor of SUVs and CUVs] is a big mistake. Everybody is going now for SUVs, everybody thinks that the market for sedans is going down.

Our way of thinking is maybe to differentiate the sedans a little bit more in detail. Think about rugged style. If the look and feel of sedans is different, you make the difference.

How boring is life if you just see SUVs on the road? This is boring.

And everybody thinks ‘OH, forget about sedans! This doesn’t work!’ They have to put more brain into it, you know? Yeah, to make the difference. Maybe to design, to compose, or to interpret a sedan more differently. The space and utilization of a sedan is from my point of view also unbeatable. This is a nice thing."

Hyundai Says Performance EV is in the Cards

Illustration for article titled Hyundai Isn't Giving up on Sedans and Neither Am I
In addition to sedans, I love electric cars. They’re so nice and easy to drive, and the performance can be killer. I drove the standard Ioniq last week, and while it was perfectly competent as a commuter, it didn’t really set my soul on fire. Hyundai might have a way to change that.

To prove the concept of a performance EV sedan, Hyundai popped the 201 horsepower 291 lb-ft motor from the KONA into the Ioniq, updated the suspension, gave it a big brake package, and fitted wider sticky tires to turn this normally staid sedan into a performance machine. Then it was entered in the Optima Ultimate Street Car Challenge series. I dig it.

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I guess at the current point of time, in terms of ICE conventional powertrains, these things have an advantage, but it will be reduced very dramatically in the future to come. We are going to stick with our philosophy, there’s no doubt about it, "fun to drive" is our focus. But you can do it with alternative powertrains as well. Be it a BEV or fuel cell. And this is exactly what our company is now very concentrated on accomplishing."

Albert Biermann: "First of all, we need to prepare for a time where by regulation and laws we cannot put the traditional race cars out anymore. So we have to do something to keep racing, right? That is job number one. We are preparing to do that.

A battery electric race car, you can really go into the cities and make a good show. You saw the WTCR cars, right? You can give a show. If it’s battery electric or not, okay the sound isn’t there, but I think our touring car racing, this is true racing. Fighting like crazy. That also goes with battery electric.

I’m quite optimistic that those [E-WTCR] races will also be very enjoyable. We need to go into this. Our car will run this year for the first time. Let’s see how we can move on with E-WTCR. We want to support E-WTCR, clearly. We made that commitment. Let’s see how much fun we can squeeze out of battery electric racing."

Just the night before talking to Albert, I test drove a couple of hours in an i30 N and an Ionic EV. So, I asked if an Ionic N is in the pipeline.

"Yeah, we had already a concept car, our U.S. tech office, they made a fancy Ioniq. They tuned it a little bit. Did some autocross or something? [He’s talking about the Ioniq that Hyundai raced in Optima Ultimate Street Car Challenge, shown below.] And we also have a concept car in Namyang, we tuned it. I wouldn’t call it an N. But yeah, we are testing the waters.

Yeah, I mean, sooner or later there will be a battery-electric N. It’s just a matter of time. But then there’s a time maybe when that is even over. And then there will probably be a fuel cell electric N. That depends. If we keep in small segments then maybe battery electric is still the right way to go. When we talk about larger cars, SUVs, we have to go fuel cell electric."

Hyundai Says Nürburgring Production Car Lap Records are Useless

Illustration for article titled Hyundai Isn't Giving up on Sedans and Neither Am I
Man, from my perspective Hyundai is singing all the right tunes. I vastly prefer to value driver confidence and driving enjoyment over the search for ever lower lap times. While Renault is happy to grab headlines by bolting sticky tires and crazy suspension to a hatchback, it’s probably a quick but not very easy to drive hot hatch. There’s a tipping point where lap times make a car unusable for street driving. It is for that reason I feel Nürburgring lap times are meaningless.

The Renault Megane RS Trophy-R Just Beat Up The Civic Type R and Stole Its Nürburgring Crown
I don’t put much stock in Nürburgring lap times, or any lap times for that matter, as they relate…

Those are the corners where we finally decide about the aero balance. Where the not-so-professional driver can still feel comfortable in that high-speed corner when you go over that little crest and the car becomes light. You want a planted back to feel safe. And not feel scared when the car is everywhere and you get the heartbeat because you are scared. We want the heartbeat because you have fun. This is why we are here."

Later in the conversation, I asked Mr. Biermann what he thought of hot hatches like the Honda Civic Type-R and Renault Megane RS Trophy-R breaking FWD production car N-ring records. Here’s what he had to say.

"No. For this, we developed the Veloster N and i30 N TCR race cars. This is the job of race cars, to make a fast lap time and to win races. And last year in our first season, we won the world championship in WTCR. I think that statement should be clear enough to everybody.

And a road car is first of all fun to drive. And of course race track capability to enjoy it. But if I make a car for the lap time, that aero setup would be completely different. That makes no sense. We want young people to enjoy the car, and not only very fast driving journalists or hire a race driver who is driving over the kerbs like a maniac with a special suspension setup just to find that other four, five, six seconds to beat some record. That’s not our game. We work for customers, not for media story.

And to win races and lap time making, we have the TCR cars. It’s as easy as that."

I gotta admit, I agree 100 percent. It’s been proven hundreds of times that eking out the final few seconds of a lap time doesn’t make the car more fun to drive or more engaging. Often the opposite. *coughs* Porsche GT3 RS *coughs*

Toyota Told Hyundai Not to do NASCAR

Illustration for article titled Hyundai Isn't Giving up on Sedans and Neither Am I
Hyundai is looking to grow its motorsport endeavors in North America. The Korean manufacturer currently runs a few Veloster N TCR racers with support from Bryan Herta Autosport. There have been discussions on how else to get involved, and NASCAR was mentioned quite a lot for a while.

Thomas Schemera: "Yeah, but this is always associated with a hell of a lot of budget. And we talked to them, and they gave a presentation, and I got invited [to Daytona] and we invited them [to visit Hyundai] and we discussed it, we talked it through. At the end of the day we said at the current point of time it doesn’t make sense.

We also talked to Toyota, in Dallas, we said ‘Hey guys, what’s going on in NASCAR? Let’s put our heads together and let’s share some ideas.’ And they said ‘If we were you guys, does it really make sense?’

You have to get access to the best teams, you need to put a hell of a lot of money on the table, you need to get access to the best drivers. Because this [meaning NASCAR racing] is not about the brand, this is not about the team, this is all about the driver, we were told. And if you want this, and you want to spend this money, and you have the patience to wait this 10 years (or 11 years, or maybe eight years) then do it."

Schemera then closes this train of thought by reprising Toyota’s advice, "But if we were you..." He then trailed off and gave a typically European shrug.

While I had his ear, I suggested he think about becoming a third engine supplier for IndyCar. This was met with a stroke of the chin and little else. Bryan Herta seemed interested.

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2019 Veloster Joins Hyundai’s Lineup of IIHS Top Safety Picks

The 2019 Veloster hatchback recently became the 11th Hyundai vehicle to win recognition for its crash prevention and mitigation features from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

After a rigorous series of crash tests, the Veloster received a Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS. The organization highlighted the Veloster’s standard and available front crash prevention technologies as a major reason for the award.

"Safety is a top priority for Hyundai and its engineering team, and we are proud to hear that Veloster now joins the list of Hyundai models that have achieved this recognition from the IIHS," said Scott Margason, Hyundai Motor America’s director of product planning. "The Veloster is a prime example of a sleek and exhilarating vehicle to sit behind the wheel of, while still offering the advanced safety features available across our Hyundai lineup."

The 10 other 2019 Hyundai vehicles at Group 1 Hyundai with Top Safety Pick or Top Safety Pick+ awards are the Tucson, Sonata, Santa Fe, Santa Fe XL, Kona, Elantra, and Accent.

To be named a Top Safety Pick, a vehicle must have "good" ratings for these five crash tests: head restraint, roof strength, side, driver-side small overlap front, and moderate overlap front. It must also score "good" or "acceptable" for headlights, "good" or "acceptable" in the passenger-side small overlap test, and "advanced" or "superior" for front crash prevention.

The 2019 Veloster boasts a wide range of standard and available safety features. All models come with six airbags and an anti-lock braking system with electronic brake-force distribution and brake assist. The Veloster can also be outfitted with active-safety options like Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, High Beam Assist, and Driver Attention Warning.

If you’re looking for Hyundai specials - check out all the great promotions on Hyundai vehicles at Group 1 Hyundai!

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2019 Hyundai Grand i10 Could Look Like This!

Hyundai is working on the next-generation versions of its existing range of cars. The company will bring the next-gen Grand i10, Xcent, Creta and Elite i20 in the next 2 years. The Korean brand will launch the 2019 Grand i10 hatchback in the end of this year.

The third-generation Hyundai Grand i10 will first go on sale in India in the end of this year, which will be followed in early 2020. The report claims that the 2019 Hyundai i10 will be the most hi-tech and advanced car in a market.

The report claims that the next Grand i10 is expected to receive minimal changes. In fact, the rendering images show that the next model will share its basic shape with the outgoing model. It will feature the same funky headlamps, centre-mounted daytime running lights and bumper design. The hatchback is likely to receive mild tweaks to front and rear bumpers.

The Hyundai i10’s coloured interiors are likely to be phased out. The hatchback could receive an upgraded version of the infotainment system. It is likely to borrow the 8-inch touchscreen system from the larger i30 hatchback.
The 2019 Hyundai Grand i10 is expected to be powered by the existing 1.2-litre petrol engine, which will be tweaked to meet BS VI emission norms. It is expected that the next i0 will go petrol only and is not likely to receive diesel engine due to the increase in price gap between petrol and diesel cars. Both manual and automatic versions are likely to be on offer.

Book your Grand i10 test drive at Group 1 Hyundai.

New Hyundai i10 - a look to when it previewed ahead of Frankfurt show debut

Replacement for strong-selling city car is teased in design image; will arrive in showrooms before end of year
The Hyundai i10 - Hyundai’s city car - is moving into its third generation for 2020, and the first official image of the new car has been released.

Although not confirmed to be an image of the firm's city car, Autocar understands this is the i10 - but we don't yet know if it will debut in Frankfurt in concept form or full production spec.
While only the car's 'floating' C-pillar design is shown in what looks to be a slightly exaggerated digital rendering, we can see the new Volkswagen Up rival's styling will take a step forward from today's six-year-old model.
A prototype spotted a while ago with less disguise on European roads, thought to be the i10, is now in fact believed to be the larger i20. Our reference point for the i10 therefore goes back to images of a heavily disguised mule undergoing winter testing.
That car retained the familiar smaller footprint and upright stance of the outgoing i10 but had significant body cladding, including over the C-pillar, which appears to rise in the same way as the preview image.

Details of the interior are yet to be seen, but the Korean manufacturer is expected to boost perceived quality and introduce more advanced technology, including greater connectivity features, wireless smartphone charging and more active safety systems on top-end models.
Interior space isn't likely to increase significantly, because the current i10 is only fractionally shorter than the latest Kia Picanto, with which the new model is expected to share its platform and mechanicals. Engines are expected to include the familiar 1.0-litre three-cylinder and 1.2-litre four-cylinder naturally aspirated petrol units, with a turbocharged 1.0-litre triple likely to make its way over from the range-topping Picanto.
Expect prices to rise slightly to reflect the improvements and changing markets. We'll see more details closer to the i10's unveiling next year.

Though you won’t find any new Hyundai i10’s on the streets anymore - there are still pre-owned and demo i10 models at Group 1 Hyundai, which is as good as it gets.

Hyundai Kona: Pint-Sized Pizzazz

Hyundai Kona
If you think there’s been an SUV explosion during the last couple of years, you’ve been paying attention, and the class that’s been expanding at a record pace is also the smallest. Automakers are rushing to add a subcompact SUV to their lineup, and one of the newest to join the fray is the Hyundai Kona — it’s also one of the most interestingly styled in the class.
The Kona slots below the Tucson compact SUV in the automaker’s lineup and marks a new design direction for the brand. Its overall look is more playful and rugged than Hyundai’s other SUVs, and as a result, it stands out — far out.
Front and center is the automaker’s hallmark grille, but a new headlight setup adds a funky dimension. Skinny LED daytime running lights sit high on the corners, and the headlights sit lower in a pod formation flanking the grille. The Kona also wears a generous amount of black cladding on all sides that gives it a rough, outdoorsy effect.
We pit the Kona against key rivals in the subcompact SUV class.
To test drive the Hyundai Kona - visit Group 1 Hyundai here.

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