Hyundai’s plans to introduce a pickup into the American market are far from dead; in fact they're more alive than ever.
More details about this future pickup are coming to light thanks to statements from a Hyundai executive. The Hyundai pickup was first teased nearly 5 years ago as a concept vehicle at the 2015 Detroit auto show (pictured). But, fast-forwarding to now, Hyundai is solidifying some details confirming that it will be made in the United States and will target US, non-traditional, truck buyers.
For me a big takeaway here is that Hyundai knows it can’t compete with the F-150s or Silverados of the world. Instead they are targeting the less traditional buyers who might be looking at the new Ford Ranger or Honda Ridgeline for example.
Michael O’Brien, VP of Product for Hyundai explains that “It’ll be a very versatile vehicle…That has the promise of creating a whole new class of buyers”. While Hyundai is clearly very optimistic about this new vehicle, they still won’t reveal a timeline for its introduction or availability.
As I mentioned earlier, we saw a concept of this vehicle 5 years ago. Back then, the concept was a compact five-seater with a 2L turbo diesel insides it’s crossover-like body. Given Hyundai’s statements about their target audience, we can expect the future truck to target a more urban customer base looking for smaller pickups.
If you were paying attention, you may have been surprised to hear that the South Korean manufacturer is planning to make this vehicle in the US. Hyundai states that this is so that it can be built near the customers for the product and so that it can also avoid any new vehicle tariffs. Given the political unrest with Mexico, Hyundai also has seemingly ruled out that as an option as well. But none of this should really be an issue as Hyundai, and its sister company Kia, are no strangers to producing cars in the United States. Hyundai has a plant in Montgomery Alabama that has a capacity of about 400,000 vehicles per year. Kia produces about 340,000 vehicles per year in West Point Georgia.
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