Hyundai Shines at 2019 AutoMobility LA

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Experienced by Kimatni D. Rawlins

AutoMobility LA is one of the most exciting showcases of new vehicle launches on the circuit and represents as the last (or first) auto show of the year depending on your outlook. Held at the city’s convention center next to LA Live, the scene was ripe with eclectic electric vehicles, high-powered roadrunners, and everything in-between. Plus, the multitude of automotive media receptions allowed everyone in the industry to catch up and talk shop.

They say go big or go home, so that is what Hyundai did in downtown LA. The Korean automaker of valued focused vehicles with advanced tech played a significant role in the festivities as they showed off a squad of new models, one of which actor Josh Duhamel introduced. The top three vehicles presented on day one of AutoMobility LA were the innovative and futuristic Vision T Plug-in Hybrid SUV Concept, the potent RM19 Racing Midship Sports Car Prototype, and the energy-efficient IONIQ alternative fuel vehicle.

2019 Elantra GT N Line

I landed on the scene from Washington, DC to experience Hyundai’s business model, lifestyle attributes, and vehicle technologies, including both 2019 and 2020 models. For example, have you seen the new 2020 Sonata yet? If not, do yourself a favor and check it out. For the current lineup, I jumped in a 2019 Elantra GT N Line M/T ($24,300) to get me around while in town for the few days. The smaller hatchback is nimble, quick, and simple to park in the various LA garages I had to maneuver through. Its 1.6-liter Turbo GDI 4-cylinder engine with 201-horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque was a blast zipping around the City of Angels in, and even more astute heading to the Valley since it features the N Line tuned sports suspension and sticky 18” Michelin Sport 4 summer tires. Hyundai situated the 2019 Elantra GT N Line to supplant the 2018 Elantra GT Sport while hinting at future Hyundai N Line models on the horizon.

Vision T Plug-in Hybrid SUV Concept

To set the tone early, Hyundai took the floor immediately after BMW’s press conference and introduced the sci-fi reminiscent Vision T concept. The outlier crossover vehicle was designed and engineered to complement the Urban Adventurer, who thinks more nomadically. For aerodynamic purposes, the muscular body and sharp intersections of the concept houses an illuminating Parametric Air Shutter that changes shape based on vehicle speed. More progressive illumination shines brilliantly through the headlights, taillights, and Hyundai badges.

The Vision T is finished in a matte-green exterior hue and receives its power from an eco-friendly plug-in hybrid powertrain. Huge satin-chrome alloy rims, dark orange brake calipers, and a glass roof structure indicate some of the streamlined design techniques of the SUV concept. “We pursue innovative solutions in design and add emotional value to our product experience through sensuous sportiness design language,” said SangYup Lee, Senior Vice President and Head of Hyundai Global Design Center.

RM19 Racing Midship Sports Car Prototype

Korean motorsports participation would seem like an anomaly to the average, but Hyundai is no stranger to maneuvering through chicanes and blasting down the backstretch at top speeds. In truth, it was 2012 when Hyundai came up with “Project RM” to incorporate racing technologies in its consumer cars. RM allows the company to experiment with motorsports technologies on test tracks and open roads. Today, the evolutionary RM19 Racing Midship Sports Car Prototype, a derivative of the Hyundai N brand, features a 6-speed wet dual-clutch transmission which is paired with a super-efficient Touring Car Racing-based 2-liter turbocharged engine dispersing 390-horsepower for outstanding RWD acceleration. Staggered 20″ one-piece lightweight forged aluminum-alloy wheels get you rolling and 6-piston front brakes keep you from rolling. A massive wing spoiler and air ducting for the powertrain dominates the rear. For durability testing, Hyundai pounded the pavement of the demanding 13-mile long Nurburgring motorsports complex with the mid-engine racer for 400 to 500 laps within a month of testing.

IONIQ Alternative Fuel Vehicle

To whimsically educate AutoMobility LA media guests on Hyundai’s clean mobility platform, Transformers actor Josh Duhamel stepped on stage and presented the IONIQ alternative fuel vehicle, which comes in three electrified forms: hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and full-electric.  The 2020 model features a redesigned, aerodynamic exterior and creative interior, and cruises for 170 miles before charging is needed. Duhamel spoke passionately about planet sustainability and humorously about saving a turtle in Toronto while filming. One of the essential benefits of owning this conscious green car is the Hyundai Lifetime Hybrid/Electric Battery Warranty that will replace and dispose of your vehicle’s lithium-ion-polymer battery if needed. Some of the updates on the 2020 IONIQ include a fresh mesh-type grille, new bumpers and lights, updated wheels, high-tech customizable ambient lighting, and an available 10.25” widescreen Navigation system.

Hyundai is taking planetary efficiency seriously and plans to introduce 44 eco-friendly models by 2025, including battery-electric and fuel-cell powered variants. Notably, Hyundai did not hold back and left the media audience with plenty to write and chat about while attending AutoMobility LA. Afterward, the PR team capped the momentous day off with its annual press reception and evening music performance at the NOVO for all to enjoy.

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