Hyundai unveils a new Grandeur

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Hyundai unveils a new Grandeur

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A computer-generated image of Hyundai Motor’s newest premium sedan, the Grandeur IG, which was fully redesigned for the first time in five years. [HYUNDAI MOTOR]

Hyundai Motor aims to grab hold of both the younger and older generations with the sixth-generation flagship sedan Grandeur, which the company unveiled on Tuesday.

The IG model comes five years after the Grandeur HG and has undergone a design transformation and technological upgrade.

“Grandeur used to symbolize power and solemnity but now it will step closer to being the vehicle for future leaders,” Jung Rag, executive vice president of Hyundai Motor General PM, said at a media preview.

“Inheriting the heritage that the Grandeur model possesses since 1986, we are going to provide Grandeur IG at a reasonable price.” The price has not been set.

The biggest noticeable change is the front and rear side facelifts.

The front face implemented what’s called a cascading grille, which Hyundai Motor introduced in its i30 hatchback and said would be a signature feature for Hyundai’s future models.

Replacing the more straight-lined and stern-looking hexagonal grille in the previous model, the new curvy grille is stamped in the center with the Hyundai Motor logo that is two times larger.

The rear lights have been changed as well. A slim LED-lit straight line bridges the two eyes in the back. The signature look for Grandeur model’s rear side used to be the connected rear ramp, but it is the first time that the bridge is lit along with two rear lights. It is designed to give the model a more sophisticated and sharp look to entice younger drivers.

Koo Min-chul, an exterior design team leader at Hyundai Motor, emphasized the amplified volume on the vehicle’s curves that connect the front hood to the rear ramp. “Creating a flowing, streamlined sideline” was one of the distinctive points when designing the model, said Koo.

Grandeur IG also gives a sneak peek into how Hyundai Motor is approaching autonomous driving technology.

The auto company implemented Hyundai Smart Sense, which is installed with autonomous emergency braking, a lane-keeping assist system, blind-spot detection and a driver attention alert system, all of which are supposed to keep the driver safer.

Hyundai Motor says these safety tools will help reduce car accidents by 40 percent.

Hyundai Smart Sense enables advanced smart cruise control which helps maintain a certain speed in long-distance drives and a monitor that gives a 360-view of its surroundings, even when not parking.

“Smart Sense is a more commercialized version of what’s implemented in Genesis. This is supposed to reach out to wider range of drivers,” said Yang Joo-wong with the Advance Driver Assistance Systems development team.

The Grandeur launch comes at a crucial time for Hyundai Motor, which has had a troublesome year with repeated labor strikes and a series of recalls over defective airbags and engines. In order to break through the dwindling domestic demand, Hyundai Motor upped the launch date for Grandeur, which was scheduled to be unveiled next year.

Grandeur was introduced in 1986 in collaboration with Mitsubishi Motors. In 1988, Hyundai started developing the model on its own. The premium sedan has sold 1.85 million units since it was introduced 30 years ago.

Hyundai Motor will reveal the prices and interior space in mid-November.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, executives of Hyundai Motor and its affiliates voluntarily decided to cut their monthly pay by 10 percent starting this month as the company struggles. It hasn’t yet been decided when wages will be reduced.


BY JIN EUN-SOO [jin.eunsoo@joongang.co.kr]

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