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Hyundai Goes Big With New Palisade SUV

3-Row, 8-seater is next in a wave of utes coming from Korea.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Nov.29, 2018

The 2020 Hyundai Palisade give the company an eight-passenger SUV to compete with the big boys.

Hyundai is racing to make up for lost time. The Korean carmaker has been slow to embrace the rapid transformation of the American market, motorists by the millions switching from cars to light truck. But it is launching its third new SUV of the year at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The 2020 Hyundai Palisade, which goes on sale next summer, is the biggest SUV the carmaker has ever offered – with three-row seating for up to eight adults. It’s also the most lavishly equipped, with an outsized array of creature comforts and safety features that could surprise anyone who still thinks of Hyundai as an economy brand.

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With even more to come, “There’s no question about it. We’re in the SUV game big time,” said Brian Smith, Hyundai’s U.S. chief operating officer, during the debut of the Palisade at the Los Angeles Convention Center. (more…)

Hyundai Set to Debut New Large Ute – Palisade – at LA Auto Show

New seven-passenger ute coming to U.S. next year.

by Joseph Szczesny on Nov.08, 2018

Can you guess the name of Hyundai's newest member of its SUV line-up? Yup. Palisade.

Hyundai continues to expand its SUV portfolio, looking to turn around sluggish sales after missing the utility craze by a few years. The new three-row sport utility vehicle is named Palisade and hits dealer showrooms next year.

Mike O’Brien, Hyundai vice president of product, corporate and digital planning, said the new name carries with it connotations of luxury strength and safety.

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“The Palisade is place and a fortress,” he said, recounting that a Palisade can mean either a place with towering cliffs topped either by a castle or expensive homes. A palisade also means a fortification, he said. (more…)

New Hyundai Elantra Makes Early Debut in Korea

U.S. version to premier at LA Auto Show.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Sep.21, 2015

The Korean Hyundai Avante will morph into the U.S. Hyundai Elantra in time for the LA Auto Show.

We’re not supposed to see the all-new Hyundai Elantra until it makes its splashy debut at the L.A. Auto Show in November. But if you ignore the “Avante” badge on the new mode that has just been unveiled in the Korean carmaker’s home market, well, you’ve got a good guess of what the new Elantra will look like.

For those who were disappointed when the latest-generation Hyundai Sonata adopted a more conservative design, don’t worry. The new Elantra maintains the edgy styling that made it such a standout in the traditionally stodgy compact sedan segment when the current model debuted a few years back.

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The new Hyundai Elantra will also grow a wee bit larger, add a variety of new high-tech features – such as emergency auto braking — and likely deliver a little bit better performance and fuel economy.


Hyundai Hopes to Fire Up Hydrogen Car Market

Korean maker will launch Tucson Fuel Cell Vehicle at $499 a month – including fuel costs.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Nov.21, 2013

Hyundai will bring its Tucson-based hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle to market next spring.

Hyundai will launch U.S. sales of its first hydrogen fuel cell vehicle next spring – and the maker hopes to fire up the market for the zero-emission technology by offering a $499-a-month lease that will include the cost of fueling up the alternative vehicle.

The launch of the Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell Vehicle will come about a year ahead of when both Toyota and Honda have said they will put their own hydrogen cars into production. Other manufacturers, including General Motors, have suggested they could also launch their own fuel-cell vehicles later in the decade.

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“It feels like a coming-out party for hydrogen at the show this week,” said Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik following the unveiling of the Tucson crossover vehicle during the first day of press previews for the 2013 L.A. Auto Show.


Hyundai Debuting New Hydrogen Car in LA

Korean maker joining Honda, Toyota with new fuel-cell vehicle.

by Joseph Szczesny on Nov.18, 2013

Hyundai CEO John Krafcik will introduce Hyundai's new hydrogen car in LA later this week.

Hyundai Motor America plans to be the third automaker to unveil an ultra-clean hydrogen-powered vehicle at this week’s L.A. Auto Show.

Considered by many to be the zero-emission alternative to battery power, hydrogen fuel cell vehicles have been regaining momentum in recent months as manufacturers like Hyundai look to overcome the limitations of current battery technology.

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“A fuel-cell car is an electric vehicle for the impatient,” said HMA Chief Executive Officer John Krafcik, who noted the introduction of fuel-cell vehicles will mean that electric propulsion will come in two different “flavors.”


Hyundai Expands Santa Fe Family

It’s a family affair.

by Joseph Szczesny on Nov.30, 2012

The 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe is a 3-row spinoff of the Santa Fe Sport that went on sale earlier this year.

In the car business, naming vehicles is an art all to itself. But now Hyundai is following a practice pioneered by Ford with its wide range of “F-Series” pickups, and more recently, Toyota with its Prius “family.  Now, the Korean carmaker will go the same route, utilizing the Santa Fe name for two distinctly different vehicles.

Hyundai showed off the production version of the latest model to wear the Santa Fe badge, a new three-row six (or seven) seat crossover, at the 2012 LA Auto Show. A two-row, five-seater dubbed the Santa Fe Sport, has been on sale since August.

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John Krafcik, the Hyundai of America of chief executive officer once oversaw Ford F-Series engineering. Ford has traditionally treated all the various full-size pickups – from single-row, light-duty models to heavy-duty crew-cab trucks with extended beds – as a single nameplate. The all-encompassing F-Series has been America’s best-selling vehicle for more than 30 years.


Hyundai Offers Peek at Veloster C3 Roll-Top

Concept could be headed for production, officials hint.

by Joseph Szczesny on Nov.29, 2012

Hyundai is giving serious consideration to producing the roll-top Veloster C3 concept.

Hyundai offered an imaginative open-air reinterpretation of the popular Veloster coupe during a preview at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The C3 convertible 3-door concept vehicle unveiled at the LA show features a dual-function convertible soft top that rolls backwards and forwards – somewhat like the system used on the Fiat 500C – and a tailgate to replace the standard Veloster’s hatchback.

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“We were inspired by the proverb ‘A rolling stone gathers no moss,’” explained Chris Chapman, chief designer, Hyundai Design North America. “The Veloster C3 Roll Top concept offers the ‘no strings attached’ freedom of a roll top convertible and customizable utility that fits an everyday to a play day dual lifestyle.”


Fuel Economy Fiasco Isn’t Hurting Hyundai, CEO Insists

Korean carmaker’s sales stay on track, says Krafcik.

by Joseph Szczesny on Nov.29, 2012

Hyundai CEO John Krafcik contends the maker has maintained momentum despite the mileage flap.

The controversy over Hyundai’s misstated fuel economy ratings has not hurt the Korean automaker’s sales, Hyundai of America chief executive officer John Krafcik told

The maker earlier this month admitted it had overstated the mileage of 900,000 vehicles sold in the U.S. – as did its sibling brand Kia. In some cases, the two brands were forced to reduce the ratings of models like the Kia Soul by as much as 6 mpg.

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Hyundai faces some hefty fines, the threat of lawsuits and the millions of dollars it has offered to reimburse affected owners.  A number of analysts, meanwhile, have warned the flap could have a strongly negative impact on Kia’s record-pace sales.  But Krafcik insisted that isn’t happening.


First Look: 2012 Hyundai Azera

Bigger is better, says Korean maker.

by Paul A. Eisenstein on Nov.17, 2011

The new 2012 Hyundai Azera adopts the maker's Fluidic Design language.

With the L.A. Auto Show launch of the 2012 Azera, Hyundai continues to transform itself from a brand focused on cheap and cheerful products into one putting much more emphasis on design, value and features.

The 2012 Hyundai  Azera targets the large, near-luxury segment dominated by the likes of the Toyota Avalon – though the Korean maker is ambitious enough to include even more highline models such as the Lexus ES and Acura TL on its list.  The second-generation Azera serves to round out the expanding line-up of upscale models that also include the Hyundai Genesis and Equus.

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Like many recent Hyundai offerings, the Azera has gone through a visually dramatic transformation, adopting the Korean carmaker’s new Fluidic Design language, which translates into a look that will be very familiar to those who’ve already seen the Hyundai Genesis, notably including the coupe-like curve to the Azera’s roofline.

With a 112-inch wheelbase and 193.3-inch overall length, the width at 73.2 inches, the 2012 Hyundai Azera is sized between the Genesis and the more mainstream Sonata.