Canada’s first responders and health care employees have made enormous sacrifices and endured serious risks during their fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, and Hyundai Canada recently instituted a discount program to thank these workers.
Hyundai Canada is now giving eligible health employees exclusive dealer invoice pricing when they buy, finance, or lease a Hyundai vehicle. This discount can also be paired with other offers.
Paramedics, firefighters, hospital staff, long-term care workers, corrections officers, and others on the front lines of pandemic response are among those who qualify for the discount.
The dealer invoice price is the amount the dealership pays to the manufacturer for the vehicle, before markups, fees, and other charges are added. It’s usually significantly less than what customers normally end up paying.
“Our first responders and health care workers have shown immense strength, resilience, and compassion during this pandemic. Giving back to those who have given so much to our communities is undeniably the right thing to do,” said Don Romano, the president and CEO of Hyundai Canada. “We’ve created this program to show our appreciation and offer a heartfelt thank-you for their remarkable work.”
Hyundai Canada has already stepped up in a variety of other ways since the beginning of the pandemic.
A few months ago, the automaker donated more than 150,000 gloves and 100,000 masks to the Markham Stouffville Hospital in Ontario so employees could continue safely treating virus patients.
Before that, Hyundai Canada also donated $100,000 to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada to help the organization provide emergency relief and weather the disruption in funding brought on by COVID-19.
According to Hyundai, the dealer invoice discount will be available for eligible customers through the end of July at dealerships across the country — giving Canada’s health care workers another five weeks or so to take advantage.
Hyundai Motor Group, which includes Hyundai Motor and its sister company Kia Motors has picked LG Chem as one of the battery suppliers for its upcoming new electric vehicles, a group spokesman said on Wednesday.
Details of the supply contract including the electric vehicle (EV) model and the full amount of the deal, which are yet to be decided, will be confidential, the spokesman said.
Hyundai Motor said last year it would launch 16 EV models by 2025 with an aim to boost EV sales to 560,000 by then.
Hyundai Canada is introducing Hyundai for Hire, an industry-first pilot project that will offer short-term vehicle rentals to customers directly through select dealerships.
Don Romano, president and CEO of Hyundai Auto Canada Corp., spoke with Canadian Manufacturing about the initiative at the Canadian International AutoShow.
Romano explained that consumers will be able to rent cars for however long they wish, “for a week, a couple of days, a month,” and said they can expect to pay a lot less than they would at a traditional car rental firm. “We don’t have that overhead. We make the cars.”
According to Romano, the service is ideal for consumers who don’t want to commit to a lease or finance purchase, indecisive prospective buyers, university students, condo dwellers and newcomers to Canada who might not have credit yet.
The automaker says anyone who uses the service is eligible for its loyalty discount towards the purchase of a new vehicle, which in most cases will cover the rental fee.
“We’re just bringing new people in to get to know the Hyundai family and portfolio and it just gives them an option,” said Romano.
Romano said Hyundai went with the rental model over a subscription model, in which consumers pay monthly or yearly to have access to a number of different cars, for a few different reasons. “With a subscription, you are depreciating a number of different cars.” He said it can also be a pain to switch cars once you’ve become comfortable with what you are driving. In addition, “The cost is high, the challenges with the customer are high.”
Insurance is provided through Aviva, and financing and billing are done through Scotia Bank, with Scotia paying the dealers for the rental cost.
The cost of each rental will be inclusive of insurance and maintenance – the driver only needs to add gas. “We wanted the experience to be ‘here’s the keys, here’s the contract, we’ll see you when you come back,’” Romano said.
The pilot project will begin in early March at select Ontario dealerships. Additional details about the program including booking information, pricing and product availability will become available at that time.
Hyundai Canada announced December sales of 7,914 units, a 14.4% increase over the same month last year. This marks the fifth consecutive month of record sales for Hyundai Canada, consistently outperforming the Canadian market.
Overall in 2019, Hyundai sold 133,207 total units, which is up 4.2% from 2018. Notably, Hyundai reclaimed its position as the third-largest automobile import brand in Canada. In a declining market, the brand was able to capture an additional 0.6% of total market share, bringing it up to 7.0% from 6.4% in 2018.
In addition, Kona remains the clear leader in its segment, capturing 20% market share in 2019. Kona outsold the second place Kicks by nearly 700 units in December. Tucson saw a significant increase of 44% and outperformed its segment in the month of December.
There was unprecedented consumer demand for the brand’s eco models with Hyundai’s electric vehicle sales more than tripling in 2019, for a total of 5,005 units, due in large part to the success of the new Kona electric. The Kona and Kona electric were both named and awarded the 2019 North American Utility of the Year by the North American Car, Utility, and Truck of the Year Awards.
The effective launch of the new Palisade and Venue SUVs also contributed significantly to Hyundai’s successful 2019, as well as sustained demand for the Tucson and Santa Fe. SUV sales hit record numbers in 2019 with 78,980 units sold, up from 67,171 units in 2018.
Equally impressive was Genesis, Hyundai’s luxury brand, which set its third consecutive record-breaking performance, increasing YTD sales by 5.8% versus the previous year, while European luxury makes declined by more than -6%.
This year, Hyundai Canada reached many milestones and accomplished notable achievements such as being named one of the 2019 Best Workplaces™ in Canada by Great Place to Work. Furthermore, Hyundai received the Gold Award for brand building from the Canadian Marketing Association in 2019.
“This past year was a turning point for the brand. The automotive market is contracting, yet Hyundai’s retail sales were up significantly resulting in record market share gains,” noted Don Romano, President and CEO, Hyundai Auto Canada. “We were honoured to have our performance recognized by our parent company, Hyundai Motor Corporation, with the Platinum Award for Excellence for 2019, an award bestowed on the top-performing country globally.”
Many stand-out accomplishments have led to a successful year for the brand and will lead to increased momentum in the new year.
Kona awarded AJAC’s Best Small Utility for 2019
Kona and Kona electric were both named and awarded the 2019 North American Utility of the Year by the North American Car, Utility, and Truck of the Year Awards
Hyundai Canada won the 2020 AJAC Best Safety Innovation Award for its Blind View Monitor system
Veloster N won the 2020 Road & Track Performance Car of the Year
Palisade won the prestigious Red Dot Award for design excellence
2019 Hyundai Santa Fe was awarded the ALG Residual Value Award for Best Redesign of the Year
Kona won the 2019 and 2020 Guide de l’Auto Best Small Utility and the 2019 Best New SUV of the Year
Genesis Mint Concept won the 2020 Guide de l’Auto Best Concept Car
Kona won the 2020 Auto123.com Best Subcompact SUV of the Year
Hyundai Canada was named one of the 2019 Best Workplaces™ in Canada by Great Place to Work
Genesis Motors received the Silver Award for customer experience from the Canadian Marketing Association in 2019
Hyundai received the Gold Award for brand building from the Canadian Marketing Association in 2019
Hyundai Motor Corporation awarded Hyundai Canada with the Platinum Award for Excellence for 2019
Hyundai and Kia have introduced a new virtual reality design evaluation system that allows up to 20 people to work on the same project at the same time.
Debuting at the companies’ global HQ, the Namyang Research and Development Center in South Korea, the system enables the brands’ engineers and anyone else wearing the headsets to view and, thanks to 36 motion tracking sensors, engage with the simulations in real-time.
This means design concepts can be reviewed early on in the process, and simulations of interior and exterior details, lighting, colours and finishes can be mocked up and experienced more easily.
“The virtual development process is a necessary step for responding quickly and reacting with agility to the needs of customers and paradigm shifts within the automotive industry,” said Albert Biermann, Head of Research and Development Division for Hyundai Motor Group, in a press release.
Through reinforced virtual processes, we will enhance quality and profitability, ultimately increasing investment in R&D to secure competitiveness in future mobility.
At the 2019 LA Auto Show, Hyundai showcased the Vision T Plug-in Hybrid SUV Concept which gives us a peek into the company’s new design language. The Vision T is the seventh in a series of Hyundai Design Centre concepts and the SUV concept sees a matte-green exterior finish and comes powered by a plug-in hybrid powertrain. The Vision T side profile conveys a continual sense of speed and forward motion. The long hood and level roofline coupled with a long wheelbase and short overhangs reflect a ready-for-anything dynamic character. In contrast to prevailing compact SUV designs, Vision T uses crisp geometric angles and edges to create a striking contrast between a sleek silhouette and masculine wedge lines. In fact, from the looks and dimensions we can almost see what the next-gen Tucson will look like.
Two derivative sub-themes of the dynamism fundamental design concept are Parametric Fantasy and Transcendent Connectivity. In these sub-themes, all parametric surfaces are connected from the body to either light or trim features. It features seamless connectivity free from distinct design boundaries. Ambient light reflects off these concave and convex lines creating an extreme sense of tension. Charisma is added with the evolution of a Hidden Signature Lamp derived from the Le Fil Rouge and Grandeur Face Lift. At higher speeds, the Parametric Air Shutter is an original developmental feature that actively adjusts both aerodynamics and design appearance.
SangYup Lee, Senior Vice President and Head of Hyundai Global Design Centre said, “We pursue innovative solutions in design and add emotional value to our product experience through sensuous sportiness design language,”
A closer look at the front and you see that when stationary, the grille is closed and static. Once in motion, each individual cell of the grille design continues to move in a prescribed sequence. This dynamic character includes the functional effect of controlling airflow to the powertrain, optimising aerodynamics and fuel efficiency.
When the powertrain is started, the dark-chrome matte hue of the integrated hidden signature headlamp system features a half-mirror system that has a chromium appearance which transforms into functional lighting on demand. The side window design is ultra-clean and seamless, with a futuristic frameless daylight opening and a satin chrome garnish. The oversize satin chrome alloy wheels feature ample voided area with dark orange brake calipers visible within the split-five-spoke wheel design. The beveled sides of the wheel spokes feature a matte-gray finish descending into the voided areas, highlighting the brilliance of the satin chrome spoke faces. From above, a special glass pattern is embossed within the roof glass structure. These dynamic effects carry into the Hyundai logo design.
The Vision T charging port is located on the passenger side rear quarter panel and features a sliding cover. When charging, “Blue Drive” is illuminated, indicating the system is actively charging. The battery state of charge is also visually indicated externally in a metered, circular light cluster, creating a complete circle appearance when fully charged.
The head of Hyundai Canada says the future of car buying is online, up to a point.
President and CEO Don Romano says the company, which launched its Genesis line of higher-end cars as an online only option in 2016, learned that many buyers still want to walk through a showroom.
Romano says the company, which also introduced fixed prices with the Genesis line to eliminate haggling, has since partnered with agents with physical showrooms to appeal to those who want to browse in person.
Speaking at the Elevate tech conference in Toronto, Romano said that while dealerships will still play a role, the company is working to move much of the car buying process online to improve a process that the vast majority of car shoppers dislike.
Hyundai has been an early mover among major auto companies to shift shopping online, though Telsa Inc. has been selling vehicles online for years and others are moving more into the space.
The company launched a new online portal across Hyundai Canada last year that allows customers to build and price their model as well as get a firm quote on a trade-in value, go through an online credit application, and book a test drive.
COUR D’ALENE, Idaho — Hyundai has topped off its crossover vehicle lineup with the 2020 three-row Palisade. The largest vehicle ever produced by Hyundai; the Palisade is named after a series of cliffs in California and aimed at consumers in their peak years of transporting children.
“This vehicle is for those who need a three-row vehicle. To them, space, versatility and premium features are important,” Lawrence Hamilton, director of marketing for Hyundai Auto Canada, told us here during the reveal of the company’s new flagship.
The Palisade is considerably larger than the Santa Fe XL, which it replaces. Built on an entirely new platform it shares with the Kia Telluride, it is 7.5 cm longer, and rides on a wheelbase that has grown by 10 cm. It is also 9.1 cm wider and five cm taller.
That extra space has been allocated to the second and third rows, which boast exceptional head and legroom — and plenty of space for child seats. The Palisade seats eight with its standard second-row bench seat, seven with a pair of captain’s chairs in that location.
The third row actually accommodates adults, two in comfort. There are belts and space for three smaller individuals. It can be accessed through a single button that causes the second-row seats to tilt and slide forward. There is also a grab handle on the C-pillar to aid third-row entry. On upper trim levels, the third-row seat can be reclined or powered up/down from the cargo area.
These are just a few of the many examples of how the development team designed the Palisade to be the modern-day equivalent of the minivan — family-friendly to the extreme. There is a driver talk mode that amplifies the driver’s voice through the rear speakers so they can tell the rear occupants to, for example, quit fighting and quiet down. If they do so, the rear speakers can be muted, so the little ones can sleep.
Family friendly? There are USB plugs in all three rows, seven in total. Clever placement includes the sides of the front seats for second-row occupants and high up in the third row. There is wireless charging, a 115-volt outlet and 14 to 16 cup holders, depending on the model. A number of storage pockets provide space for large objects like purses and tablets in the centre console. There is underfloor storage in the cargo hold and two speeds for the liftgate.
Safety is a major consideration for all of us, but Hyundai knows parents place extra emphasis on this when considering a new vehicle. The Palisade has thus been loaded with a full array of active and passive safety features. It all starts with the increased use of high strength steel and a significantly stiffer structure. Among the standard equipment, depending on trim level, the Palisade comes with: lane keep assist, blind spot/collision avoidance assist, surround view monitor, forward collision avoidance with pedestrian detection, rear cross traffic collision avoidance, adaptive cruise control and both front and rear park distance warning. The side view monitor uses cameras to display the scene in the instrument panel when the signal lever is activated.
Over on the technical side, the top two trim levels come with three years of Hyundai’s BlueLink Connected car system, at no charge. Through an app on their phone, the owner can locate the vehicle, lock or unlock it, start it remotely and activate the HVAC system, and conduct diagnostics. The 26-cm wide navigation screen can display various content and two phones can be connected, one for audio and one as a phone
There are three different instrument clusters, depending on trim level.
On the road, the Palisade is extremely smooth and very quiet. The standard (and only) engine is a 3.8-litre V6. It produces enough power to lend this big ute an unexpected sense of urgency when pressed. The eight-speed automatic has a gear for all occasions and shifts are imperceptible. The selection is a shift-by-wire arrangement through buttons on the centre console the sophisticated AWD system utilizes input from 50 sensors, processed 100 times every second, to determine how much power to send to the front or rear wheels.
There are paddle shifters behind the steering wheel, but I’ll bet that 90 per cent of Palisade drivers will never use them. Similarly, after the new wears off, I think the vast majority of drivers will never use the ability to choose between Smart, Comfort, Sport and Eco drive modes. Nor will they select sand, snow or mud from the terrain. I’d suggest Comfort or Sport depending on your driving style and snow if you encounter a particularly nasty situation.
The Palisade will be available in Essential ($38,499), Preferred ($45,499), Luxury ($50,199) and Ultimate ($53,999) trim levels. All but the base Essential include all-wheel drive. It is available on the base model for $2,000. Preferred is expected to account for 42 per cent of sales, Luxury 38 per cent, and Essential and Ultimate 10 per cent each. At the various steps on the trim ladder, the product planners have ensured the Palisade has an advantage over the competition in equipment levels.
Hyundai sees the Palisade going up against the Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot and VW Atlas primarily, with the Ford Explorer and Mazda CX-9 as secondary combatants. The Palisade joins the hot-selling Kona and the Santa Fe in the company’s crossover lineup. Next up? The Venue at the other end of the size spectrum, will appear later this year. Hyundai says it is being developed to appeal to the young and older single females.
Model: 2020 Hyundai Palisade Luxury AWD 7P
Engine: 3.8-litre, V6, 291 horsepower, 262 lb.-ft. of torque
Now there’s a new place for you to get a soft-riding land yacht: Korea. Just look at some of the cars Hyundai and Kia are pumping out as of late. Anyone who bought a new Cadillac Fleetwood would be perfectly happy in the new Kia K900 and the Genesis G90 is one of the purest forms of classic American luxury on sale today – so long as you ignore the badge.
Knowing this, it was little surprise that the new 2020 Hyundai Palisade, the largest Hyundai ever built, felt like the equivalent of a warm cup of Ginseng tea on a cold winter’s day when we sampled it in snowy South Korea.
This gargantuan SUV is the replacement for the outgoing Hyundai Santa Fe XL and is much longer, wider and taller. Not to worry though, the popular mid-size Santa Fe (Not XL) is sticking around.
The Palisade rides on a brand new platform from Hyundai that will also serve in the forthcoming Kia Telluride and a yet-to-be-named Genesis luxury SUV as well. Under the hood of North American models will be a 3.8-liter V6 engine, which is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. Hyundai has yet to say if all-wheel-drive will come standard on the Palisade or if an entry-level front-wheel-drive model will be available. We’re thinking that budget-friendly Hyundai is going to want to offer a front-wheel-drive base model, though.
There’s one thing you should know right away: we can’t give you driving impressions on the Palisade’s V6 engine. The Palisade we drove was an early production run model built for the domestic market and as such, our tester had a 2.2-liter diesel engine under the hood. We won’t be getting the small displacement oil burner, not surprisingly, but we weren’t going to pass up the opportunity to drive a vehicle just a few short weeks after its official debut.
And that’s not to say our drive wasn’t educational. For starters, the Palisade rides great. While this SUV is about as soft and compliant as they come, it doesn’t float about annoyingly. Hit a speed bump with some vigor and the Palisade soaks it up and settles right down, remaining totally composed. It’s not bad through the twisty bits, either. Hyundai let us loose on a slalom course at its MOBIS test center in Seosan and the Palisade managed just fine and had surprisingly little body roll. Sure, owners of this vehicle won’t be doing any spirited driving, but it’s always comforting to know that a vehicle is capable of performing a high-speed evasive maneuver without tripping over itself.
There are also seven drive modes on this SUV: Smart, Eco, Comfort, Sport, Snow, Mud, and Sand. We sampled all three of the terrain management modes in appropriate settings, from a mildly muddy Korean off-road trail to a snowy Seoul highway and a sandy Seosan beach. The Palisade manages snow just fine, of course, and while true off-roading and sand driving may prove to be a bit too extreme for the family-focused Palisade, it seemed plenty capable for the suburban consumers that will buy it. The HTRAC all-wheel-drive system does the job and goes largely unnoticed. As the saying goes, if you’ve done something right, people won’t know you’ve done anything at all.
A Warm Welcome
The agreeable suspension and refined all-wheel-drive system pairs nicely with the Palisade’s warm, inviting interior. My test vehicle came well equipped with cream leather upholstery, diamond-stitched seats and door panels, and open-pore wood trim. It also had the optional 10.3-inch widescreen infotainment display with (an 8.0-inch screen is standard) and some other amenities such as heated and cooled front and second-row seating, a heated steering wheel, a sunroof, and a rear seat moonroof. It’s a cozy place to sit and is supremely serene, especially for a non-luxury product. Say what you will about the Palisade’s opinion-splitting exterior styling – the interior is extremely well executed in terms of design and materials use. We’ll be curious to see what lower trim models are like inside, though.
The technology is well executed, too. We’re happy to see Hyundai offering its Smartsense suite of active safety features as standard on this family hauler. Buyers will get forward collision avoidance, lane follow assist, adaptive cruise with stop and go, rear cross traffic alert and much more – all standard. The adaptive cruise and lane follow systems, dubbed Highway Drive Assist, works great. Period. It doesn’t slam on the brakes when traffic comes to a slow and accelerates back to highway speed smoothly. It’s extremely impressive – especially since it’s standard equipment. The 10.3-inch display screens graphics are fairly crisp and the front and rear-facing cameras have a high-quality picture. For parents, an easy-to-use intercom system makes it easy to tell the kids to knock it off when they get restless on long drives.
The cargo and passenger space is also competitive. With all the third row seats flat, the Palisade’s cargo space measures in at a sizable 45.8 cubic feet. Hyundai also claims the Palisade has more cargo room behind the third row than the Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot and Nissan Pathfinder, and more first and second-row legroom than the Pilot, Pathfinder and Ford Explorer. My tester had an optional power folding second and third row as well, which makes converting the Palisade from a family vehicle into a cargo hauler quick and easy.
This is a family vehicle, so safety is also important. With a high-strength steel frame and the now customary standard safety tech, Hyundai is expecting the Palisade to achieve a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the IIHS and a 5-star NHTSA rating.
The Palisade is a difficult vehicle to criticize, but there are a few very minor foibles. First off, we’d like to see Hyundai offer more engine options, especially a hybrid or plug-in hybrid. The Palisade is just launching, though, so we’ll give Hyundai some time.
The shift-by-wire buttons also aren’t great to use – we’d much prefer a rotary dial or something that mimics a standard gear selector.
Finally, another note is that the brakes need work, as they sometimes require a bit more input to slow the heavy Palisade than expected. Hyundai would be smart to beef them up prior to the North American launch – especially since US and Canadian buyers are much more likely to tow closer to the Palisade’s 5,000 lb standing tow rating than Korean buyers.
The Verdict: 2020 Hyundai Palisade Review
With a supple ride, well-executed cabin and great standard tech, the Palisade is a solid entry into the three-row SUV segment. The key to its success will be in the pricing. If Hyundai can undercut the competition, consumers will have no reason not to consider this rather refined full-size from Hyundai.
The 2020 Hyundai Palisade will be built at Hyundai’s plant Ulsan, South Korea and will go on sale in the US and Canada in the summer of 2019. Stay tuned to AutoGuide for a more complete review of the 3.8-liter V6 Palisade – we’ll have one coming by mid-2019 at the latest.