Hyundai-Sime Darby Motors (HSDM), the sole distributor of Hyundai vehicles, has confirmed it will be bringing in their Palisade flagship SUV and its compact SUV, the 2021 facelifted Kona later this year.
Though uncertain exactly when in 2021, the gamble on bringing its flagship SUV and trendy compact crossover is in line with the distributor’s strategy of building the brand and its products as a viable alternative to leading Japanese brands in Malaysia.
The recent launch of the 2020 Hyundai Elantra is another indicator of their overarching strategy.
First introduced at the tail end of 2018, the Palisade is Hyundai’s flagship premium 7-seater SUV that rides on a bespoke new chassis and is powered with an Atkinson-cycle 3.8-liter V6, dual CVVT, direct-injected engine. Power is rated at 291hp at 6,000rpm and a peak torque of approximately 355Nm of torque at 5,000rpm. Other highlight features include Heads-Up Display (HUD) that projects a virtual image onto the windshield, a system of mirrors combined with a full-color TFT LCD display, and features adjustable brightness to ensure excellent day and night-time visibility.
The Kona on the other hand was launched in October 2020 in two variants ranging from RM116k to RM124k. Among the highlights of the facelifted Kona are a new (149PS, 180Nm) Smartstream G2.0 Atkinson engine mated to a CVT transmission, a more refined front fascia design, new 17 and 18-inch wheels, an enhanced SmartSense state-of-the-art safety package, and a remote starter.
This facelifted version also projects a more modern look in its interior. The new console area gets a new horizontal layout while the air vents and speakers also get new rings with aluminium finish.
Elsewhere, an upgraded ambient lighting technology lights up the cupholder and foot lamps on the front passenger and driver side. New interior colour options, materials, and trims are also to be expected with then facelift.