Speaking exclusively to CarAdvice at this week’s 2017 Seoul motor show, Hyundai and Kia chief design officer Peter Schreyer said, while he and his team are working on a number of vehicles, a ute is still not currently one of them.
“We work on a lot of things,” Schreyer said. "[And moving into new segments] always creates new opportunities, for sure.”
But a rival to the likes of the hugely popular Toyota HiLux?
“Not at the moment,” the design boss said.
The comments come not long after Hyundai Australia chief operating officer Scott Grant told CarAdvice, “the project is now moving forward.”
Also providing Hyundai with the potential for a high-riding SUV challenger to the likes of the Ford Everest, Holden Trailblazer, Mitsubishi Pajero Sport, and Toyota Fortuner, a commercial ute – in 4×2, 4×4, single-cab, extra-cab, and dual-cab configurations – is something the local division has been keen on for some time.
In late 2015, Hyundai Australia public relations general manager Bill Thomas told CarAdvice, “I think a really smart Hyundai dual-cab ute would be something that the market would like.”
He added, however, “It’s a huge commitment to start a model line like that and it’s really not our call, but we’ve got both hands, both legs and both feet up in the air, just saying we would take it if it was made.”
More 'lifestyle ute' than rugged workhorse, Hyundai first unveiled the Santa Cruz Crossover Concept (pictured above) at the 2015 Detroit auto show.
What do you think? Should Hyundai bite the bullet and enter the thriving dual-cab ute segment? Let us know in the comments section below.