1 Sep 1999
By CHRIS HARRIS
The South Korean company's first crack at the luxury segment was an unmitigated flop in more ways than one.
Based on the 1998 front-wheel drive EF Sonata platform, the '99 XG Grandeur arrived straight from the factory with roly-poly American-market suspension settings for a sick-inducing, tyre-squealing experience.
Add strange styling and a chintzy interior and it's not hard to see why Australians kept away in their thousands - although around 4200 finally found homes here.
Under the engine bay lurked a 141kW/260Nm 3.0-litre V6 mated to a slick five-speed automatic gearbox.
There were two models available – the base model and the XG, with the XG adding powered front seats, leather trim and climate control to a wide range of standard items such as dual airbags, anti-lock brakes and traction control.
Hyundai discontinued the model when the South Korean factory took over distribution from the Singaporean-based Astre Automotive in late 2003, waiting until the next-generation model appeared in early ’06.
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