Hyundai has announced that production of its first-ever bakkie will begin in 2021 and it will be built in the USA!
Render by Duwyne Aspeling, Cars.co.za
Is this what Hyundai's forthcoming bakkie will look like? Perhaps... We have been keeping a close eye on developments regarding Hyundai’s new bakkie and while official information remains thin, Hyundai has now confirmed that production of its first bakkie will start in 2021. Furthermore, it will be produced at Hyundai's plant in Alabama, USA.
The 2015 Hyundai Santa Cruz Concept was given the green light for production in 2017 and we know that Hyundai and Kia are reportedly co-developing a pickup with the intention of infiltrating the lucrative pickup market in the US. While a rival to the full-size Ford F-150 might be a push too far, it appears that a medium-sized bakkie to rival the likes of the ever-popular Toyota Hilux and Ford Ranger is likely.
More than this, there are rumours that Hyundai’s N Division could very well develop a high-performance bakkie that would rival the Ford Ranger Raptor. There is speculation that this N bakkie could feature the same potent, turbocharged 2.0-litre engine that powers the i30N and could offer as much as 225 kW.
From a design perspective, it’s also clear that the production version won’t look like the Santa Cruz Concept as Hyundai will be employing the brands latest design philosophy. The Render you see here wears the face of the latest Santa Fe and we think it looks pretty good, don't you think?
In yet another report from Australia, Which Car has confirmed that Hyundai is developing a range of 1-tonne bakkies for Australia and other markets, which as history has proven, will likely include South Africa which is, as we know, a major market for bakkies. The report also indicates that the one-tonne bakkie will be based on a ladder-frame chassis and will be developed in partnership with Kia, which will also receive its own version of the bakkie. Both 2-wheel and 4-wheel drive variants are on the cards as well as different cab variants.
Hyundai Australia CEO, John Kett commented:
“What’s clear to us is that if we’re going to bring a ute out, it had better be a ute. We’ve got past the first hurdle of what it needs to look like, but it needs to be functional as well. That’s the important part. We’re going down that pathway and we’re working towards it. We just have to make sure that when it arrives, it’s a bloody ute.”
“We’re looking at a range. When you cut up the ute market, you split it up between 4x4 and 4x2, who owns 4x2 and what powertrain goes with that and then 4x4 crew cab versus cab/chassis and so on… we want to be smart about it and that’s what we’re going through at the moment.”
We will keep you updated as soon as more information becomes available.