A history of the Hyundai Motor Company
An overview of the Hyundai Motor Company and its vehicles.
Hyundai was founded in 1967 by Chung Ju-Yung and the company introduced its first model, the Cortina onto the market with the assistance of Ford. Following this in 1975 the company released their first Korean vehicle which featured the iconic powertrain technology that was provided by Mitsubishi Motors, the vehicles were then shipped out across Ecuador.
Throughout the 1980s Hyundai started exporting vehicles throughout Europe and the United States. One model that was particularly popular in the US was the Excel which was the first car that the company sold with front wheel drive. It went on to receive widespread critical acclaim, winning awards on many best-selling lists. During this period the company released the Stellar to replace the Cortina; this vehicle utilised rear wheel drive and offered additional luxuries such as air conditioning and electric locks.
During the late 1990s Hyundai underwent aggressive re-branding in order to be perceived as a more upmarket company. This campaign was spearheaded by the fourth generation Sonata and a updated version of the Elantra model. In 2000 Hyundai began manufacturing the Santa Fe, a 4-door SUV that featured powerful front wheel drive and a front engine. This model was a huge success for the company on the American commercial market and it quickly became the company’s best-selling vehicle. The vehicle also garnered critical success winning various awards including Consumer Report’s ‘Top Pick’ award in 2008.
Recently Hyundai introduced the ix20 which received very positive reviews at the Paris Motor Show. The company are also focusing on releasing environmentally friendly vehicles with low CO2 emissions. Two measures they have implemented to achieve this include the Hyundai Intelligent Stop and Go (ISG) technology and the 1.4 litre CRDI engines which have emissions as low as 1124g/km.