The latest from Hyundai is a concept car that looks like a Kona that’s been hitting the gym and getting into the human growth hormones. But without the strained exterior of the past-their-prime action heroes you’d more normally associate with those two activities. It’s the Vision T PHEV, and it’s a look at the future of the brand’s design.
At a deceptively large 181.5-inches long, this one comes in somewhere just about halfway between the Tucson and the Santa Fe. Hyundai describes the design as creating “prismatic arresting tension” thanks to the way the light reflects off of the concave and convex contrasting lines that make up the bodywork.
The hidden lamps are derived from those of previous Hyundai concepts Le Fil Rouge, and Grandeur Face Lift. They’re surrounding what Hyundai calls a parametric air shutter grille. It’s a unique and dynamic grille where each cell in the grille design can operate independently from the rest. Stopped, all are closed. With speed, each cell moves in a prescribed sequence to improve aerodynamics but also look cooler when you’re driving, and Hyundai calls it “a truly dynamic forward demeanor.”
Start the Vision T, and the dark-chrome matte signature headlights come on. They use a half-mirror system that turns into the actual lighting on demand. Hyundai says that the hidden signature lamp design represents the next-generation of that Hyundai design element, so that means that the hidden lights could very well see production on an upcoming model.
At the back, the rear lights continue the sequence lighting theme. Shut off the T and they’ll extinguish in a special sequence where the Hyundai badge is the last to go dark.
The Vision T looks black in person, under the show lights, but it’s actually finished in matte green. Since it’s a PHEV, though Hyundai didn’t talk about the driveline at all on this one, it gets a sliding charging port door on the front passenger-side quarter panel. The Blue Drive logo lights up below the port, and there’s a ring of LEDs that fills up as the charge completes.
This is the seventh project from the Hyundai Design Centre, and it’s our preview of the next generation of the brand’s Sensuous Sportiness global styling language. Which means that future Hyundai sedans and crossovers could look like this. It also means that Hyundai’s stylists are continuing to hit it out of the park.