February 9, 2006 They’ve obviously been burning the midnight oil at Hyundai’s European design centre in Russelsheim, Germany, with the studio creating two new concept cars for debut at major international auto shows in the next few weeks. The centrepiece of Hyundai’s presentation at the Geneva Motor Show next month will be the Genus concept vehicle, a premium crossover model that combines the sporting dynamism of a coupe with the versatility of an estate car. Also from Russelsheim comes the phat and fast Accent SR Turbo, looking every inch a design study of the next Hyundai World Rally Car, mooted to debut mid 2007 for a tilt at the 2008 season. Accent SR will headline Hyundai’s display at the Melbourne International Motor Show this week. The Accent SR Turbo is based on the three-door hatch variant of the coming new generation MC Accent range, and has the purposeful look of a high performance small car with wide tracks front and rear, big flares framing outsize alloys, lowered sports suspension, body kit and big tailpipes.
The Genus has only been reveled in design sketch at this stage, with photos to appear in the next few weeks and the in-the-metal version to appear at Geneva. The Genus’ styling is inspired by the natural forms created by waves and tides. The concept previews Hyundai’s response to research which has identified developing customer tastes and expectations in the upper medium D-segment.
The SR’s bulging wheel arch flares stretch over chromed 18 inch alloy wheels shod with sticky 225 / 40R series low profile, high performance tyres pushed out wide front and rear. SR’s flared look extends all along the sides of the car with Accent SR-badged deep side-sill skirts fitted.
Their lowering effect is not all illusion—SR squats on lowered sports suspension, struts up front and a new semi-independent torsion twist beam rear suspension with coils all round. A cutout centre section of the rear bumper frames a spaced-apart pair of chrome-tipped trapezoid tailpipes. SR’s rump is cropped a considerable 180mm shorter than outgoing Accent so forget the golf clubs….this is a car you take to the car—not golf—club.
Projector headlights, a matt black stylized mesh grille, power tilt/slide sunroof and rear roof shade-spoiler complete the look.
Under the hood lurks a turbocharged 2.0 litre, four cylinder engine of unspecified but high output, matched to a five-speed automatic transmission. Electronic Stability Control and a TPMS (tyre pressure monitoring system) are fitted.
Inside, Accent SR’s sporty theme carries through with brushed alloy and metallic feature panel finishes, leather seat trim, blue-hue instrumentation and a data screen in the centre dash.
Accent SR is strictly a concept car only, but it carries clues to directions in Hyundai models to come in the not-too-distant future.