Hyundai Cars

A relative newcomer to the American marketplace, Hyundai is a Korean automaker with a product line that has improved considerably over the past few years. Hyundai cars and SUVs provide a high level of content for an affordable price, and are currently backed by one of the industry's longest warranties.

Hyundai Terracan Overview

Hyundai Terracan FrontThere is nothing quite like a good trip away into the great outdoors. And what better way to get there than in Hyundai's new Terracan? Built superbly, the Hyundai Terracan has the goods to tackle some of the toughest off-road terrain. With the chassis constructed from heavy-duty gauge steel, this is a fair-dinkum off-roader. The engine power under normal bitumen conditions is fed to the big Hyundai Terracan's rear wheels. A large four wheel drive, in my ideal world, should have the capacity to be driven via the back wheels alone because the fuel savings that are gained as a result are very beneficial. Head up to the ski field and four wheel drive can be selected in high ratio to cope with any slippery and treacherous road conditions. Selecting four wheel drive in the Hyundai Terracan is easy with an electronic shift transfer function enabling 2-high to slip into 4-high smoothly at speeds up to 80 kph.

For those of you who like to get right off the road and into the bush, the Hyundai Terracan will gladly take you there. Drop in and out of slippery ruts and over rocky river beds with ease as the 4-low option offers you loads of grab and grip to pull you over the roughest of outback terrain. The Hyundai Terracan is a ferociously competent vehicle, with the limited slip differential transferring as much torque to the wheel with the greatest traction. This machine is fantastic and a great pleasure to drive on and off the road and has entry and departure angles along with good ground clearance as is expected in a four wheel drive of this calibre. Ride on road is superb. I love driving this one! OK, then, is the Hyundai Terracan as rough inside as the off road terrain that it masters? No way!

Hyundai Terracan RearStep inside the Hyundai Terracan and Hyundai Accessories are on offer that give a very luxurious cabin finish that blends in nicely with the wooden trim on the centre console and door handles. The air-conditioning unit provides a nice environment on board the Hyundai Terracan, and the unit has the added ability to filter out pollen particles. With room and comfort, seven people can enjoy a pleasurable journey. And with the six speaker premium sound system that is MP3 compatible, the miles are eaten away in a very relaxed manner. The exterior has an upright appearance which gives the Hyundai Terracan a commanding stance. The chunky wheel arches, a high raking windshield, a roof mounted spoiler, a purposeful headlight design and massive 255/65 R 16 tyres give the Hyundai Terracan a very superior looking design.

On offer are two engine variants. There is a class leading diesel engine that is smooth and powerful, as well as frugal with fuel economy figures of around 10 litres per 100 km regardless of transmission choice. With 120 kW at 3800 rpm and a colossal 345 Nm of twist at 1750 - 3000 rpm this adds up to a formidable and very usable powerhouse in both the automatic and manual guise. The V6 petrol powered version of the Hyundai Terracan is a quad cam 24 valve unit offering a smooth 143 kW at 5500 rpm, and the torque figures of 302Nm at 4000 rpm are not too bad either. The V6 is available with a manual or automatic option as well. Fuel efficiency of the V6 is down on the diesel, with an economy reading of around 15.5 litres per 100 km for both transmission types.

Hyundai Terracan ReviewSafety of the big Hyundai Terracan is excellent, with active ABS and EBD being a standard feature, as are the driver and front passenger airbags. The Terracan's body shell is strengthened and has crush zones front and rear. Side impact absorbing bumpers are also incorporated into the design. In a four wheel drive market that offers a lot of different options for the new car buyer, a Hyundai Terracan is a very sound and classy alternative with excellent off road and on road manners. Go have some fun! This no-nonsense approach means that there are few real rivals. Hyundai cites the Jeep Grand Cherokee but that's much more expensive and sophisticated. A long-wheelbase Nissan Terrano is probably its closest rival but you might consider a Mitsubishi Shogun Sport or Vauxhall Frontera.

But, of course, the best choice is a second-hand Terracan. A two-year-old will still have as much warranty left as a new Discovery but will likely be half the price. The only problem is that unless you go shopping in Europe, where the Terracan has been on sale for a couple of years, you're going to have to wait a while as British sales have only just begun. I enjoyed the Terracan more than its modest abilities and zero style had suggested I would. I'd stop some way short of saying I actually liked it but neither did it ruin my week. Those who drive Terracans in the future will discover an honestly conceived and well executed off-roader that, on these terms, is far from being without merit. I'm just glad I'm not going to be one of them.