“Hyundai” has landed again. Test drive two models sold in Japan

Korean automaker Hyundai (formerly known as Hyundai) will re-enter the Japanese passenger car market in 2022.

First of all, for two models, the electric vehicle “Ionic 5” and the hydrogen vehicle “Nesso”, orders will be accepted from May 2022, and delivery will start from July of the same year. This time, I was able to test drive the Ionic 5 and Nesso, so I would like to report.

Japan has business opportunities
Hyundai is expanding its sales globally, and the number of units sold in 2021 will be about 3.9 million units (3.88 million units in 2021), which is larger than Nissan. In Japan, several models were introduced from 2001 to 2010, but withdrew due to poor sales. Therefore, this time it is the circumstances of re-landing.

When I look at the things around me, I realize again that many things are made in Korea. Furthermore, considering entertainment such as K-POP and the Korean wave boom, there may be a chance if there is a good product and an appropriate price range. Based on that idea, he decided to reintroduce it to Japan.

Also, this time the target is the younger generation, which is why the sales method centered on the Internet has been adopted. Many of the younger generation may be new to Hyundai without knowing the history of Hyundai. For that reason, I felt the expectation that they would approach me from a more neutral point of view.
Regarding the purchase method, online sales will be the main method, but stores are planned to be set up in major cities in Japan, and the Hyundai Customer Experience Center has already opened in Yokohama on July 30, 2022. It is One of the goals of the center is to complement online sales. In addition, the center expresses the interior space from Hyundai’s sustainable point of view, and actively incorporates recycled materials. Along with experiencing the world of Hyundai, actual cars are on display, test drives and business negotiations are possible, and maintenance, including vehicle inspections, is planned.

Unique design
Let’s take a look at the design of the two models that will be introduced to Japan. In particular, the Ionic 5 is distinctive.
“Ionic” is a sub-brand of Hyundai, and it is said to be an EV-only model. Therefore, the car was designed as a new car with an identity as Ionic.

Hyundai’s designs are based on the concept of ‘family look’. “In contrast to matryoshka dolls, which are all the same shape and differ in size, each chess piece has a different shape and a different role. Hyundai places great importance on this,” says Takao Urabe of the Hyundai Mobility Japan R&D Center Design Team. The same is true for the Ionic series.

Ionic is designed with four identities, one of which is the most distinctive “parametric pixel”. By arranging the pixels, which are the minimum units of digital images, and arranging them in 3D, it is possible to create a richly expressive, digital yet analogue look. It’s a familiar image,” says Urabe.

Taking the example of the Ionic 5, it is adopted in the headlights, rear combination lamps, and door trims in the interior, claiming that it is an Ionic series.
Another major feature of the Ionic 5 design is the strong character line, such as the letter Z drawn on the side. Recently, while there are many cars that claim individuality on the surface, the design of the Ionic 5 is produced with a distinctive character line. There are several possible intentions for this, but the most effective one would be to show off your stance. It’s easy because you can see the car’s stance better by sticking out the fenders. However, since automobiles have various requirements, it is not so easy. Therefore, in the Ionic 5, the front fender is emphasized by the character line from the front door to the rear wheel. At the same time, the top part emphasizes the rear fender, making it look as if the fender is overhanging. In addition, the upper surface effectively shows how the stance is applied to the rear.

A little unsatisfactory “Nesso”
Let’s start running. First, I took a test drive from Nesso, a hydrogen car.
The exterior, which has the form of an SUV, looks like a safe design without any external taste. In other words, it’s simple without any big adventures. Conversely, it can be said that it is a timeless design.

When you enter the room, it is set up a long time ago. The center console is high, and there are so many physical switches on it that I’m honestly confused as to where everything is. I felt that this area needed a little more tidying up. Also, the decorative silver doesn’t seem to have a very high quality feel, and it’s a pity that it makes it feel like plastic.

The shift switch is located on the right side of the center console, and has a cross shape with P at the top center, N at the bottom, R on the right, and D on the left. R and D are big switches so you can’t go wrong.

While operating the turn signal lever that has been moved to the right side of the steering column, when I start running on a general road, the output of torque is sensitive to the accelerator opening, making it a little difficult to ride. Really, even just a few centimeters, even if you step on the weight of your shoes, you will accelerate with a lot of momentum. Then, whether it is powerful even in the medium and high speed range, it is not so.

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