For me Hyundai has always been one of those brands that “just work”, they are good at doing what you want from them and be a standard car. That has been my perception of Hyundai over the past decade. Things changed last Monday, on Autovrooom where I got the chance to test all three of Hyundai’s new models being introduced to the Egyptian market. Hyundai definitely upped their game to compete with other familiar Korean brands on the market, not only in terms of style and pricing but also in terms of performance, handling and options. The three cars I drove were Tucson, Elantra and IONIQ Hybrid.. that last one is very special.
This has always been my favorite out of the Hyundai bunch, maybe even out of the Korean bunch, and on track I fell even deeper in love with it. The car did not fail to meet my expectations in terms of being spacious and comfortable, with a leathered up interior and a multifunction steering wheel, as well as the overall good quality of material used inside. But what caught my attention the most is the car’s ability on track, now this aint Range Rover, so for a car this big, you’d expect handling to be a bit wobbly, but it’s not. It turns smoothly on booth lower and higher speeds, and it stabilises thanks to ESC and VSM systems that are standard in higher categories of the car. On the straight, this car can unlock the maximum of 1.6 potential quite quickly, the one I drove on track was the Turbo version, which significantly increases power and torque from the standard version, reaching 175 hp and 265 NM.
This face-lifted sedan has been the cornerstone of Hyundai’s business for years, and for good reasons, its a car that targets all the needs of daily car buyers, a comfortable and not too little sedan, that has good options with an economic 1.6 engine that produces 127 hp. Its enough for any family and for most individuals who just want a smooth car that’s safe and reliable for daily driving. Hyundai Elantra got a long deserved facelift that reminded me alot of when Toyota facelift their cars.. its dramatic but then not too far off from what it looked like before, its definitely become bolder.
Hyundai IONIQ Hybrid
This was my first time driving a Hybrid, and honestly I’m impressed. Hybrids have come a long way and this one translates this statement word for word. I’m not sure if you’d call it a sedan or a lift-back but styling wise the car is unassuming and it gives you all those LA green living vibes that you’re looking for in a hybrid. On the inside things change.. and its not as hipster as the outside, blue trims that contrast the dark dashboard work incredibly well with the sporty D shaped steering wheel to create this feeling that you’re in a completely different car. On track the IONIQ impressed me.. Being on electric motors the car is silent, its breaks are light probably to utilise all the break power to refill the electric motor’s batteries. What impressed me the most was the instant switch of power source, something that would -in the past- generate a kick, but with this one the transition was instant and smoother than any other hybrid I’ve seen. Now why would you buy a hybrid? Its not only good for the ball of fire we’re living on -aka planet earth- its also good on milage, with and estimate of 4.1 liters to 100 km. You can’t beat that.. oh yeah you can with an EV, but you can’t beat that with any other car that has a 1.6. The rest of the options are all perks…