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Staria’s new approach to localised handling
Australian Hyundai engineers craft off-the-shelf suspension solution for new Staria
9 Sep 2021
By MATT BROGAN
HYUNDAI Motor Company Australia (HMCA) says its localised suspension tuning program will continue, but not always with an entirely bespoke setup for individual models.
Case in point is the recently released Hyundai Staria; while not the recipient of an individualised suspension tune per se, Australian engineers say they worked closely with Hyundai’s R&D centre in Namyang to improve the model before production commenced.
It is a trend HMCA says will continue throughout and even after the COVD-19 pandemic.
The local ride and handling program commenced in 2013 as the first Genesis models arrived Down Under and has since developed to incorporate almost every new model sold locally.
Since COVID-19 travel restrictions impacted the program in 2020, several Hyundai models have been released with little or no localised tuning, the company instead adopting off-the-shelf solutions based on feedback from Australian engineers.
“We did have the privilege of having a (Staria) in the country for many months to conduct our own evaluation and to offer feedback to Namyang,” explained HMCA general manager of product, Andrew Tuitahi.
“We’re pleased to say Namyang adopted all the recommendations and changes we made and addressed all of our concerns (relating to the suspension tune); they’re always very receptive of our input.
“We were able to tell them what characteristics we are looking for and they were able to adapt the base tune to give the Staria the kind of road feel Australian customers expect from our vehicles.”
HMCA said that COVID-19 travel restriction had forced a rethink on how time and resources are allocated to the suspension tuning of new models for specific markets.
The Palisade large SUV was one of the first new model to adapt a hybrised approach to suspension tuning between R&D teams in Australia and South Korea.
Models including the i20 N and Genesis GV70 have since followed a similar development path, with the upcoming Staria Load (replacement for the iLoad commercial van) and IONIQ 5 electric car to follow a similar program.
Hyundai continues to utilise Australia as a development base, conducting not only rough-road suspension tuning, but also hot weather climate testing of many new models and their various components.
The recently released Hyundai Staria people-mover will be joined by its light commercial sibling, the Staria Load, within four to six weeks.
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