Fab at 50 – 15 things you probably didn’t know about Hyundai
Glasses are being raised at Swindon motor dealer Pebley Beach this week, following the news that Hyundai has become the fourth largest vehicle manufacturer in the world, as it prepares to celebrate its 50th anniversary.
Hyundai replaced Vauxhall / General Motors, which has slipped to sixth place behind Renault-Nissan. Honda Motor Group sits at the number one spot, followed by Fiat-Chrysler and Ford Motor.
To mark the achievement, here are 15 things you probably didn’t know about Hyundai motors:
1. Hyundai will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year – it was established on December 29, 1967.
2. Hyundai operates the world's largest car manufacturing plant at Ulsan, South Korea. It has an annual production capacity of 1.6 million units.
3. Hyundai employs about 75,000 people worldwide.
4. Hyundai vehicles are sold in 193 countries through more than 5,000 dealerships and showrooms.
5. Hyundai’s first car was the Cortina, built under license from Ford.
6. A Brit was in charge of the company’s early successes – George Turnbull was hired from British Leyland as vice president and director in 1974.
7. The firm’s first original car was the Hyundai Pony – South Korea’s first mass-produced car – launched in 1975.
8. The Hyundai Pony arrived in the UK in 1982. It cost £3,075 (that’s £9,959 in today’s money).
9. Santa Fe, Hyundai’s first 4WD, went on sale in the UK in 2000.
10. Hyundai launched the game-changing Five Year Warranty in 2002.
11. The government’s Scrappage initiative in 2008 saw UK sales increase from 28,000 a year to 61,000 by 2010.
12. Hyundai UK was named AM Carmaker of the Year in 2011.
13. In 2014 Hyundai’s hydrogen fuel cell ix35 broke the record for the longest ever journey in a hydrogen vehicle – 700km.
14. The development of clean fuel technology remains a primary focus for the brand. In 2017 Hyundai launched the Ioniq: the world’s first car offering three electrified powertrains: hybrid, electric, and plug-in.
15. Hyundai launched its first driverless car, the Autonomous Ioniq, at the Consumer Electronics and Consumer Technology Show in Las Vegas in January this year.
Pebley Beach acquired Swindon Hyundai at Eldene in 2004. In 2011 Pebley opened a state-of-the-art showroom selling Hyundai and Suzuki cars at Paddington Drive.