Rumors Continue About Hyundai Small Pickup

Hyundai rendering-1 II

The rumors persist about Hyundai considering making a small pickup truck for the U.S. market. In fact, our friends at went so far as to map out the most appropriate strategy for Hyundai to take, along with some design cues.

We still haven't heard anything official from the Korean automaker, but 2017 — when the "chicken tax," a 25 percent tariff on imported pickup trucks is supposed to expire — is not far away.

We thought Tundra's analysis was well-thought-out; it even makes a few good suggestions about how to make the pickup as inexpensively as possible while still offering some class-leading options. The segment, no doubt, has plenty of evolving and growing to do before it's likely to justify this kind of significant investment from a "non-pickup" maker, but from what we've seen in this story, it just might work.

Hyundai rendering-2 II


No mention of a diesel?

Looks a 100% better than the ridgeline..which BTW is NOT a truck.

I'd like to see an extended cab version of this with the longer, more useable bed.

Lets hope whatever they do they don't falsely state the MPG numbers on the window sticker. My brother in law law bought the turbo Santa Fe, to find out that they meant to say 3 mpg less on the window sticker, oops. What are they doing for him now? Nothing.

But the truck itself: same ol short box you can't put much into......About like the Ridgeline...People will buy just so they can say they "we have a truck!"

Oddly I seen a Jeep Patriot tow a camping trailer that looked near 3500-4000 pounds yesterday, that was a surprise.

It is a nice looking truck but being PUTC I have a feeling 20 out of the next 25 comments will be bashing this "foreign" truck. I think if the 1500 lb payload and 5000 lbs towing would be adequate but hardly a differentiating factor.

I'd place money on the 3.3 V6 but likely tuned for truck duty with lower RPM torque which would cause a loss of some horsepower but likely not a whole lot.

If they can do a couple of suspension/chassis tuning they might be able to crank out some more payload and I think a 5.5 or 6 foot bed would need to be on it for the US market.

Hyundai does have small commercial vans (think sprinter, dobolo, transit, etc.) that could be converted to a truck style fairly easily and would likely last under a commercial type duty cycle. That might lead more credence than a "lifestyle truck."

Not everyone needs a 6' bed!!! I had a 2000 Frontier Crew that served me well except for the mileage. I could haul waste off to the dump, load a dirtbike (with the tailgate down - no problem), and pick up some bagged fertilizer or topsoil on my way home from work. If I could do the same with 24 city / 28+ hwy, I would be happy.
A utility trailer can stand by for the infrequent need for additional capacity.

I think it would sell very well, especially with a 10-year/100,000-mile warranty. But the UAW along with every major auto manufacturer in the US would oppose it and lobby against it.

I would not buy one for myself because I'm a full-size truck guy, but I know owners of small pickup trucks who would love to have this opportunity to replace their old trucks with a new one from Hyundai.

Right now their only alternative is a Ridgeline, Frontier or a Tacoma. A Hyundai pickup truck would offer yet another choice, with maybe a better warranty.

One more thing - a timing chain instead of a belt and it must be available with a manual.

As any MBA/Marketing person could tell you, they need a niche.
Need to be more than an alternative to Tacoma/Frontier.
Probably need to offer 2 engines, maybe 3, a 2.0L-non-turbo base engine, a 2.0L Turbo, and either a Turbo-Diesel or V6.
Needs to be AWD or 4x4 with a low range as an option.
One model should be X-Terra like with all-weather flooring and seating. Needs a long bed option.

I am interested in a Hyundai truck. I like the looks of this truck and it would fit my needs perfectly. Mark please keep us informed as to any further developments with this truck.

Bunch of BS from this website, we get great news about Chevy winning the Truck King Challenge and the article gets replaced by this crap. Not even a real truck or one that will ever be made bunch of BULL!!!

@Greg - please drop "Ametican" from your name. Any patriot would hate associating your idiotic commentary with that proud nme.

Lou, You are an socialist from Canada. Keep your yap shut if you don't have anything to contribute.

Ok. I bothered to read the referenced article and it seems the most likely route will be 4-door shortbed roughly 5', maybe 5.5' I'd prefer 6 (but not longer) and an extended-, not crew-, cab. In other words, worth considering, depending on physical size, but not really close enough to what I want. As I remember the Santa Fe, it's a reasonable size inside, but still bigger in nearly every dimension than I prefer. I believe it's even bigger than my '02 Vue SUW (insurance nomenclature), which I loved.

Is it for me? Well, if it's smaller than anything else on the market at that time, maybe. I would hope it manages some decent mpg to go with that smaller size.


It`s not a hard job to look better than a Ridgeline if the Ridgeline was a pick up first.

@GregAmerican--How do we know you are really an American. Just because you put "American" in your name doesn't mean you are American. You could be a troll from China. I and many others like a diversity of articles about trucks and many of us like Hyundais. More competition makes for a better product for everyone. Anyway I doubt Lou is a socialist since he does not agree with the government bailout of GM.

@ JoBlow: Why are you telling me that? I didn't say a thing about the ridgeline.

@Greg - "Keep your yap shut if you don't have anything to contribute."

So then......why are you talking?

I think the truck looks pretty good. It will be a nice alternative to the current midsize offerings if Hyundai does bring it. However, Is it just me or does it look like an off-shoot of the new GM midsize twins?

@ WhOUbU --Very much like the new midsize GM twins but the front is nicer than the global Colorado. There are only so many designs they can come up with so that is ok with me.

I think Hyundai sister company Kia would even make the front end more attractive. This is one nice looking pickup.

I say, bring it on, when we get them here, we can tell you all about them. But with the UAW it will be at least a decade before you get them, then your design regs are different.

In Australia Hyundai and Kia have a fantastic 2.2 litre diesel.

It's about 185hp and 320ftlb of torque. In the Kia Sorento it's getting near 40mpg.

So if they brought this out it could be concievable that you could have a genuine 35mpg midsizer.

As I've been stating I think with these newer diesels well be getting smaller diesels and you guys will be getting 'souped' up versions of our current mid size diesels.

Wow, to be honest I am fairly shocked that the PUTC community seems to be fairly accepting of this concept.

I personally like the idea, and would seriously look at it, but some features I would like to see:

1.) Engineer it (like Honda did) to have 48.5 inches between the wheel wells, so 4' wide building materials can lay flat.

2.) Since it is likely going to be a fully independent suspension, start give it 9" or 10" of ground clearance from the get-go.

3.) Leave the wheel wells larger so tires can be upsized by at least a small degree with no need for any trimming.

4.) While most people will never ever use it, put a 4low in with the AWD system. The concept of 4lo seems to be important to a lot of truck owners.

5.) Consider adding an under bed trunk like the Ridgeline has. It is a really great idea.

6.) Make *sure* the payload capacity is 1500 lbs or more. Some of these trucks with a thousand pound payload capacity are just ridiculous.

7.) Keep the interior niceties and features that Hyundai/Kia keep adding into their vehicle lineup. This would put any Hyundai truck leaps and bounds ahead of the Tacoma/Frontier/Ridgeline.

8.) Put in a motor that puts out 300+hp, it will give them an advertising advantage over their competition, and if a flat enough torque curve should give it reasonable towing capacity.

9.) The UK Santa Fe's have a self leveling suspension in the rear. This could be a useful feature to have in a Hyundai truck.

If it's on a frame with a longitudinal engine, do it! Make an SUV based on it too. Hyundai could use a lot of good engines too. I would love to see a 3.3L V6 diesel and GTDI.

@ Al

Is that 2.2 diesel Euro 6 compliant? I remeber them touting the increased performance (the old one was also 2.2 IIRC but was a slightly different architecture) of 190PS (close to the 185 mark). I think that would be a solid performer in anything up to about 4000lbs. My guess is it would rival the accelerations times of the V6 and likely could handle towing the full 5000 lbs but likely not any more.

If it is Euro 6 compliant I'd expect to start seeing this in the US for the Sonata, Azera, Tuscon & Santa Fe twins. Hopefully with their internal sourcing of aluminum, iron and steel (from the parent company Hyundai) they should be able to manufacture these engines in a way that is cost effective. Maybe only a $3k premium over a gasser?!

Hyundai is putting 8-speeds into the Genesis and Equus and they have announced they are working on 9-10 speeds so maybe by the 2017 date they'll have something that can offer the low end towing grunt and enough gears to lug on the highway.

Here a Wikipedia link on the R2.2 engine.

It states it's Euro V compliant, but the biggest hurdle for diesels was the Euro IV to Euro V jump.

To meet Euro VI, I think the changes are more towards particulates.

We are going to have a lot of pre Euro IV engines become defunct when we get to Euro VI.

The Euro IV to V jump is why the Transits in the Eurozone can't use the 3.2 Duratorque and are now using the 2.2 Duratorque.

It should be no issue for the R2.2 to make Euro VI from what I can see. This is a relatively new engine designed in Germany and would have been designed to meet the new standards for at least a decade.

Where are the actual rumors that are persisting? The article linked from PUTC links to an AN piece that has a Hyunai rep that was ambushed about pickup trucks and says Hyundai has no plans to produce a pickup.

The TundraHQ site is a fanboy site that claims "rumors are flying" with no actual info and links to their own piece from 3 years ago with the basis for the article being a TundraHQ commentator who said "Hyundai has the $ for a pickup." No real info. Just a comment in the forum used to make an article.

Then the current piece from TundraHQ claims to have "various sources" but begins with the following disclaimer: "This isn’t to say that what we’re presenting here is factual, but we feel it’s a good first guess at Hyundai’s future truck plans." No facts again. Just guesses.

This political correctness. Hyundai doesn't want to make it appear that they are ignoring a large segment of the market so when they were ambushed they were saying the politically correct thing about studying. Then they cover their a$$es with they have no plans to produce anything.

Then the geezers come out of the woodwork. The geezers who are not in the market for a pickup truck, say this would be the "perfect" truck for them. How convenient. Another mythical truck with no basis in reality. They would buy a pickup truck, this one of course, if only they could. The only problem it doesn't exist. The truck isn't real and neither are the rumors.

Big Al= I know they are souping up both gas & diesels but what are they doing to make them to hold up?Souped up engines blow oil & blow up.Are they souping up the parts?

@Phillyguy: In some areas I agree, in others I disagree. I do hope you read the referenced article about the Hyundai and not just what the PUTC blog posted; they have significantly more detail.

1) Engineer it: I agree. On the other hand, if they allow some means to support those panels on top of the wheel wells as well as front and rear of the bed (maybe with a purpose-cut 2x4) it would serve just as well.
2) Ground Clearance: Could get by with 5"-6" much better if you're wanting the highway mileage. The higher you are off the ground, the more air gets under the car and causes drag in the undercarriage. Perhaps an electric, hydraulic or pneumatic lift for that extra 2" when actually off-road or in deep snow? Optical or sonic sensors could determine when the greater ground clearance is needed with an optional manual override.
3) Larger Wheel Wells: Again this can have a detrimental effect on gas mileage at highway speeds. Since the vast majority of these would likely never leave the pavement on any kind of serious off-road activity, it doesn't much make sense. However, if such were an option with perhaps a retractible lip to keep air from catching as readily in the wells when on-road, you could see efficiency and have playtime.
4) 4Lo: There may be a number of ways this can be done and some other brands already have a manually-selectable system that is fully electronic.
5) Under-bed trunk: I won't argue the usefulness of this.
6) Payload: I don't mine a 1,000 payload--as long as it's true payload and does NOT include driver and passenger. Four stout passengers would load such a truck to capacity even before anything goes into the bed.
7) Interior Niceties: You mean like the original Ford Bronco shared with the F-150, only in reverse. If you ask me, too many US trucks have already carried that to an extreme that simply makes them too expensive.
8) 300 HP: Why? This thing is intended more as an econobox-truck, not a blinkin' race truck. It has no need for such huge horsepower. Even 200 hp is pushing it in my opinion--considering how quick and agile my 2.2 litre I-4 Saturn Vue was and is. Even pulling a 1500 pound trailer behind the Vue didn't seem to significantly load the engine, though I drove more slowly for safety's sake.
9) Self-leveling Suspension: This could fall in with item 3 above.

@Richard: Just remember the old saying: "From little acorns, mighty oaks will grow." This is the seed of an idea that may actually be a 'feeler' by Hyundai or someone associated to discover how much interest there would be in a compact pickup truck. This has nothing to do with Geezers (people a lot younger than that have also demonstrated interest in such a size).

And while the truck may not exist (I'll take that as a given), the rumors, most definitely, do. Rumors do not need fact to be generated. It is interesting though, how some rumors get taken as fact when it specifically appeals to a given audience. Even when those rumors are proven false.

To all those saying we need more and more HP and torque out of our mid-sized truck engines, remember this: Until 1999, you could order an F-350 with a 300 cu. in. I6 that put out a whole 170 horses. And it worked just fine.
I realize that power and torque are needed to haul things, but who needs 600 hp or 800 pound-feet of torque in a non-commercial vehicle?

Slightly more on topic, this thing looks a lot like the upcoming GMC/Chevy midsize. I think if they beefed up the grille a little bit to give it that macho, squared-off look, they'd have a real winner. Think of like what the Ranger was in its last years--it looked tough, but didn't overstate or overcompensate.

DW, The rumors exist - that's why the AN piece linked from this article say they have no plans for a pickup and TH piece was predictable fanboy rubbish.

rumor: talk or opinion widely disseminated with no discernible source

In other words rubbish started by fanboys at TH and Hyundai who said they have no plans for a pickup.

Keep us updated on this imaginary pickup. The geezers want to know.

I love it.

I'll never make do without a Ford, Ram or Chevy half ton, but this little guy could be a very useful utility truck.

Pick up the sandwiches for the crew at lunchtime? Sure.

Drop the boss off at the airport? Yeah!

Six speed manual trans--you better! Save a lot of money on gas. A must.

"This isn’t to say that what we’re presenting here is factual, but we feel it’s a good first guess at Hyundai’s future truck plans" - TH

Oh really? That really says something! Specially when the basis for your other phoney article on this phoney pickup was a comment by one of your own commentators that said nothing but Hyundai has $ for a pickup.

Rumors flying? I think the people at TH and the geezers who believe them need a mental examination. They have absolutely lost it or are suffering from dementia.

PUTC should stear clear of TH they are class A fanboys.

@Big Al--I actually like the looks of this truck. It could be compeitive and they could make this truck in their Alabama plant. Whether they decide to make this or not still remains to be seen, but I would definitely be intersted in this truck. It would be nice to see this truck in an exrtended cab version. A Kia version with a Sorento grill would look nice. I would really like a good Korean midsize truck.

In 2010, the talking head at TundraHQ said it was the end of the line for the Ridgeline and oboxiously posted a picture of it heading for the woodchipper along with a rant. 3 years later and the Ridgeline is still here and every Ridgeline owner I ever hear from says its the best vehicle they have evere owned.

I believe Tundra HQ just posts what they want to happen (nothing inf acts) and post negative articles against those they see as threats.

Tundra HQ says they know what they are talking about. They know nothing. You can just take their guesses and throw them in the trash. TundraHQ constantly makes a$$es out of themselves like they do with Ridgeline and Ram.


boy you got a loose know that?

Bet you wouldn't talk like that in someone's face...punk.

I'm 30 years old and not a 'geezer". I have an interest in a decent midsize truck. I've got a full size F150 that gets TERRIBLE mileage, and I am raising a family. If I get can by with a good little midsize truck, why not?

YOU got a problem with that douchebag? You must be some little manlet or something....a guy with little man syndrome because you consistantly let the world know how much loose talk you have, and I bet you are a coward, bet you wouldn't say it to their face!


I have to agree with the folks that this looks very similar to the Global Colorado. And if it is the same size as the Global Colorado it will actually have a market pretty much to itself since the global Colorado is smaller than the Tacoma and Frontier and the next mid-size from GM is supposed to be bigger than the Tacoma. Who knows maybe this could be like the Suzuki Equator and just a rebadged version of the current global offering from GM like The Equator was a rebadged Frontier.

You really have to be suspicious of all of this.

"In fact, our friends at went so far as to map out the most appropriate strategy for Hyundai to take, along with some design cues."

Some guy at a fanboy website makes a wild guess and this becomes the rumor? What is this?

Now the key quotes from Automotive News that were left out:

"We are doing a good job in recent years without a pickup truck," Lee said of Hyundai's sales. "A pickup truck is important, but it's not a big priority for our company."

"Hyundai has no plans to produce a pickup (but dealers have asked)....he said."

So this is where it stands:

No plans.

No priority.

Doing good without it.

Wild guess by TH.

They are "studying."

That's number one.

This is number two:

Of course this could mean only one thing to the morons at TH - the rumors are flying...

Aww what happened? PUTC crew cannot handle the truth? loose talk and delete my post.....hope you got the memo Richard before they deleted it!

Great news, but I don't want to get my hopes up. Hyundai would be facing trucks that would cannibalize their highly profitable fleet of Hyundai cars and SUVs with relatively low profit-margin, "body on frame" mid-size trucks.

I'm sure Mazda and VW have considered bringing their existing BT50 and Amarok to the US, but would face similar consequences. Shortly after Subaru introduced its '03 - '06 Baja, their Forester and Legacy/Outback sales dipped quite a bit and bounced back after.

@BAFO - Your 35 MPG estimate for a 2.2 diesel Hyundai truck is a good one, however, the 2.2 diesel Kia Sorento (that shares the Hyundai 2.2), in the land of OZ, gets a best of 35.6 MPG with a manual trans.

Your diesel global trucks get at least 26 MPG and a best of 30 MPG with a manual trans, which is more realistic for a potential Hyundai diesel truck.

The Mahindra also held high promise, but had a disappointing, EPA tested 21 MPG, but was an automatic, 4X4 crew cab.

You sound like DenverMike, why don't you use google as it can be your friend and not make you into a sillybilly.

@Jeff S
It would good if they could build them in the States.

I was refering to open road mpgs (highway) as most on this site only quote highway figures.

The figures you quoted appear to be average economy figures. If they are accurate as you seem to provide misinformation that is quite dodgy at the least.

The Sorento which weighs in at over 4 400lbs is delivering very good economy.

In the pickup the engine will give at least 35mpg on the highway. I'm getting over 30mpg out of my BT50.

The Mahindra is an Indian spec'd vehicle, not a global vehicle. So it isn't a very good vehicle to compare.

As you already know. Is that one just an oversight or a troll.

@ DWFields

A lot of the pieces I posted as suggestions were to address complaints that I have always read people have with the Ridgeline - note, not owners, but other truck owners.

I am actually a big fan of the Ridgeline. I will fully admit that I always thought that it was ridiculous, until a friend of mine bought one and I was actually able to see it and use it up close. Its really a great utility vehicle that does "more" stuff "better" than anything else I've ever seen or used.

That said it has not sold well, that is partially due to Honda doing a poor job advertising and a poor job updating the vehicle, and partially due to a variety of biases of more traditional truck owners. I think that if a Hyundai pickup were to be successful, since it would be a Ridgeline-like truck, it would have to address at least some, or all of these issues.

As to the motor issue, my actual preference would be for a Hyundai truck to use their "S series" diesel motor. It was (allegedly) considered to be put into the Vera Cruz (in the United States) at some point, and since this truck would basically be a Vera Cruz with a bed it would still quite well. I believe that the S series is similar to the VM Motori 3L diesel Jeep and Ram are using now.

5-6" of ground clearance won't work, that is sedan level clearance. In an ideal world everything could be an air suspension setup with an ability to raise/lower everything by a good 6", unfortunately I can't imagine that a Hyundai truck, which I would expect to be (relatively) inexpensive, to have a suspension setup like that.

Al, You really are an old fool. Your AU link is a rehash of the same news from the Automotive News article that PUTC linked to about "studying" with the important parts parts left out.

Your link even says it is a repost of what was said to Automotive News - way to pay attention. Follow along we me again: they are "studying" but have no plans to build a pickup and it's not a priority. Wake up and take your geritol you geezers!

DenverMike, I'll also say the 30+ mpg is dubious at best as it is not rated under the EPA system with our EPA equipment. Al from Oz has failed has failed to convince with his Austrailain propoganda.

Now I feel like saying Denver Mike is really reaching in his quest to discredit any form of smaller truck when he uses the Mahindra as a standard to base all midsize diesel trucks on. How about comparing all subcompacts to a Tata Nano? The Mahindra was DOA not only because of the design and quality but the franchise mess it created in the US. Maybe this truck will be produced but maybe not but Hyundai has a lot more success at launching products and the quality of Hyundai products is far superior to Mahindra. Denver Mike you are really reaching to compare Hyundai to Mahindra. Maybe we could park a Tata Nano next to a F-150 and then Hemi V8 could comment that all Fords catch on fire. Then Lou would have to explain that it was the Nano that caused the fire and not the F-150. Well we are at it how about a Yugo or a Trabaut. DenverMike is twisting logic again.

Wow. I am truly amazed at people's stupidity. Anyone who read any of the sources/links attached to these articles and thinks this truck is coming and the "rumors are flying" is very stupid and lacking of basic reading comprehension skills. Hyundai has no plans for a pickup truck.

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