2024.04.15 Hyundai Motor Company

A Luxury People Mover Leads A New Era: The Hyundai Staria 1.6 Turbo Hybrid

Hyundai Motor Company
Hyundai Motor Company's Staria Hybrid model has been newly introduced. Below is the new Staria, offering an exceptional travel experience for both drivers and passengers with the efficient 1.6 turbo hybrid powertrain and comfortable ride.

The automotive market is rapidly changing, with electric vehicles solidifying their presence among tech-savvy consumers. However, internal combustion engine vehicles, including gasoline, diesel, and hybrids, continue to appeal with their unique advantages and charms. Among these, hybrids have recently emerged as a preferred powertrain among customers in Korea.

According to the '2023 New Vehicle Registration Analysis' released by the Korea Automotive Mobility Industry Association, out of the 1,749,729 vehicles newly registered in South Korea last year, hybrids accounted for 399,898 units. This makes them the second most popular choice after gasoline vehicles, holding a 22.3% market share. This indicates that one in every five new vehicles registered last year was a hybrid. Notably, there was a 42.5% increase from the previous year, indicating a steep upward trend for hybrids. This rise in hybrid vehicle sales seems to stem from this growing popularity.

The 2024 Staria model year includes a new 1.6 turbo hybrid lineup to quickly adapt to the ever-changing automotive trends. This option is available across the Lounge, Tourer, and Cargo models.

Today, we had the opportunity to experience the 7-seater Lounge model of the Staria 1.6 turbo hybrid. It stands out with its exceptional quietness, comfort, and luxurious travel experience, characteristic of hybrids. Its exterior features long, vertical full LED headlamps, a radiator grille adorned with geometric patterns and shiny materials, and parametric pixel rear lamps positioned at the ends of the body, all contributing to its distinct presence. The new 2D H emblem, located at the front and back, is one of the subtle changes in this model year update.

The interior of the Staria is designed with user-friendliness in mind.

The driver's area is infused with a comfortable ambiance, from the suede covering the ceiling and pillar trims to the convenient electronic shift button and the soft ambient mood lamp, giving it a luxury sedan-like image. The driving sensation is similarly high-quality. Climbing into the high driver's seat and starting to drive, it's immediately apparent that the vehicle's center of gravity is low, comparable to a sedan. This stability is thanks to the advanced architecture of Hyundai Motor Group's third-generation platform.

Given the size and weight of the Staria, one might wonder if the 1.6 turbo hybrid engine's displacement is too small. However, this concern is unfounded. The system's maximum output is 245 horsepower, which is competitive even when compared to the 2.2 diesel's 177 horsepower, and the system's maximum torque is also high at 37.4kgf∙m (27.0kgf∙m for maximum engine torque).

One of the main advantages of a hybrid is its exceptional efficiency. The Staria 1.6 turbo hybrid's official fuel economy is 12.4km/L for the 7-seater Lounge model, which is comparable to a 2.0L gasoline mid-size sedan and more efficient than the same trim's 7-seater diesel model at 10.8km/L. The cargo 3-seater 1.6 turbo hybrid model boasts an even higher combined fuel efficiency of 13.0km/L. During city and highway driving, the Staria Lounge 1.6 turbo hybrid frequently switched off the engine and utilized the electric motor to minimize fuel consumption, especially during acceleration up to 50km/h, where the electric motor significantly contributed.

The Staria is most comfortable when driven leisurely. At speeds of 50-80km/h, easing off the accelerator allowed the vehicle to travel using only the electric motor, avoiding engine activation. This mode of driving highlights another hybrid advantage: superior NVH (noise, vibration, and harshness) performance, providing a smooth ride akin to an electric vehicle without engine noise and vibration.

When the engine noise disappears in a car, other sounds can become relatively more noticeable. To address this, the Staria 1.6 turbo hybrid comes standard with laminated acoustic glass on the windshield and front side windows to enhance noise insulation. This glass type incorporates a thick film between two glass layers to absorb noise and vibration. Additionally, efforts to improve the design of the engine room's under cover and optimize the performance of attached sound-absorbing materials have effectively reduced noise penetration into the cabin.

The second row of the 7-seater Staria Lounge comes standard with premium relaxation seats, offering first-class aircraft-level comfort

The rear seats showcase a harmonious blend of the Staria Lounge's spacious and luxurious interior with the 1.6 turbo hybrid powertrain's excellent NVH performance, ensuring a pleasant ride. Both the 7-seater and 9-seater Staria Lounge models feature independent second-row seats with armrests and reclining support. The 7-seater model, in particular, is equipped with premium relaxation seats as standard, enhancing travel comfort.

The premium relaxation seats feature electrically adjustable reclining, cushion tilting, and leg rests. Additionally, they are equipped with ventilation and heating functions to provide passengers with optimal comfort

The premium relaxation seats offer adjustable leg supports, cushion tilting for stable seating, and wing-type headrests for head support. The third-row bench seat also provides reclining support and features sliding and cushion tip-up functions for flexible space utilization. The 9-seater Staria Lounge, on the other hand, replaces the second-row premium relaxation seats with swiveling seats that can rotate 180 degrees to face the third-row passengers.

The cushion tip-up function enhances the third-row seats' space efficiency

The evolution of product characteristics with time is a common phenomenon across various sectors. Nonetheless, the introduction of the 1.6 turbo hybrid powertrain in the 2024 Staria is a particularly welcome development. The synergy between Staria's focus on comfortable travel and the hybrid's remarkable quietness delivers a luxurious travel experience for both drivers and passengers.

Moreover, the efficiency of a 2.0 gasoline mid-size sedan combined with the significantly larger interior space of the Staria compared to cars, SUVs, and minivans is a major advantage in vehicle operation. As we cross the threshold into the era of electrification, the benefits of internal combustion engine technology are reaching their peak. The 2024 Staria's update, which enhances the vehicle's overall refinement and distinctiveness through the hybrid powertrain, seems more than capable of meeting the high expectations of discerning customers.

Photography by Choi Dae-il, Kim Bum-seok

HMG Journal Operation Team


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