Drawing inspiration from the past and infusing it with the promise of the future, Hyundai has once again showcased its commitment to innovative design and cutting-edge technology.
The unveiling of the restored 1974 Hyundai Pony Coupe Concept at the inaugural Hyundai Reunion in Lake Como, Italy, heralds a nod to the company’s rich heritage and a signal to its future direction.
The Pony Coupe Concept, first unveiled at the 1974 Turin Motor Show, was a critical part of Hyundai’s journey into becoming a global brand.
Hyundai’s Executive Chair, Euisun Chung, reflects on the company’s ambitious beginnings: “Despite the poor industrial environment in the 1970s, my grandfather and Hyundai’s Founding chairman Ju-young Chung poured his heart and soul into rebuilding Korea’s economy and improving the lives of its people after the devastating Korean War.”
The Pony Coupe Concept represents a significant milestone in the history of Hyundai Motor. Its striking, futuristic design — characterized by flowing geometric lines, a sleek roofline, dynamic proportions, and a uniquely shaped B pillar — was groundbreaking for its time.
Unfortunately, due to adverse global economic conditions, the Pony Coupe Concept, which could have been Hyundai’s first sensational sports car, was unable to reach commercial production.
Despite this, the Concept’s enduring design aesthetic has served as inspiration for more recent models in Hyundai’s lineup, most notably, the Hyundai N Vision 74.
The N Vision 74 is a concept car that encapsulates Hyundai’s continued spirit of daring innovation. Unveiled at N Day 2022, this sporty, rear-wheel-drive coupe is equipped with two electric traction motors and is powered by both a storage battery and a hydrogen fuel cell. With an impressive 671 horsepower and an ability to accelerate to 60 mph in just four seconds, the N Vision 74 is a testament to Hyundai’s commitment to performance, even as it shifts towards a more sustainable future.
The design of the N Vision 74 draws heavy inspiration from the 1974 Pony Coupe Concept, showcasing Hyundai’s homage to its past while firmly setting its sights on the future.
Hyundai’s Chief Designer, SangYup Lee, credited with the exterior design of the N Vision 74, said that he wanted to create a car that celebrated Hyundai’s roots.
The N Vision 74 also utilizes components from other Hyundai vehicles, with the fuel cell and hydrogen storage system derived from the Hyundai Nexo, and the electrical system and traction motors similar to E-GMP vehicles such as the Ioniq 5 and 6.
The restored Pony Coupe Concept and the new N Vision 74 are more than just cars; they represent Hyundai’s enduring commitment to innovation and progress.
As Luc Donckerwolke, president and chief creative officer of Hyundai Motor Group, eloquently put it: “The restoration of this unique vehicle is a milestone in Hyundai’s history. It represents our beginnings and our commitment to the future. It serves as a legacy for generations to come. It virtually symbolizes the mobile relay baton we are passing from the past to the future of the company.”
In essence, the restored Pony Coupe Concept and the N Vision 74 embody Hyundai’s vision of honoring its past while relentlessly innovating for the future. They are symbols of the company’s journey from its humble beginnings to a leading player in the global automotive industry.
Through its bold design and advanced technology, Hyundai continues to redefine the concept of mobility, demonstrating that the spirit of innovation and daring passion that drove the creation of the Pony Coupe Concept is very much alive in Hyundai’s leadership today and will continue to shape its future.