And it's actually pretty sporty looking.
Judging by its name alone, you might guess that the "Lafesta" is some obscure, one-off supercar from an Italian workshop somewhere. But no, it’s actually a Hyundai; the small Lafesta sedan – which translates to "festival" in Italian – showed up surprisingly at the Beijing International Motor Show as a vehicle focused on the Chinese market exclusively.
The new Lafesta, "embraces the growing younger generation," says Hyundai. The small sedan embodies Hyundai’s new design approach of "Sensuous Sportiness" with an aggressive fascia highlighted by a version of Hyundai’s corporate Cascading grille, sleek headlights, LED daytime running lights, and gloss black features.
Though we don't have any official images to work with just yet, Hyundai says that same sporty styling translates to the cabin, too. A cockpit-style design comes paired with high-quality materials. The Lafesta is said to also feature some of the most advanced, safest driving assistance systems available on any Hyundai product to date.
"China is evolving quickly and so are Chinese people’s attitudes. They are more self-confident, positive and creative. The Lafesta will help us reflect this shifting trend," said Simon Loasby, Director and Head of Hyundai China Design. "It’s a clear demonstration of how our newly announced design vision, ‘Sensuous Sportiness’ comes to life in Hyundai vehicles."
Pairing appropriately with its aggressive design, the Lafesta comes powered by a 1.6-liter turbocharged GDI engine mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Hyundai doesn’t say how much the powertrain will produce, but given its "sporty" designation, here’s hoping it’s somewhere in the neighborhood of 200 horsepower (149 kilowatts), at minimum.
The Lafesta will go on sale in China in the fourth quarter of this year, but isn’t expected to make it to any other markets. More details like price and performance will be given following an official launch outside of Auto China later in the year.
Gallery: Hyundai Lafesta
Hyundai Motor unveiled a new strategic model for the Chinese market at the 2018 Beijing International Automotive Exhibition (Auto China 2018) today, as the company embraces the growing younger generation in the world’s largest automotive market.
Beijing Hyundai Motor Co., Hyundai’s Chinese venture, premiered the LAFESTA, which features powerful driving performance packaged in stylish design, as a landmark addition to the aggressively expanding Hyundai line-up in China.
The LAFESTA, which translates to ‘Festival’ in Italian, is a high-performance sporty sedan designed to meet the dynamic and passionate demands of a new mainstream generation from the 80s and 90s. When it arrives in the Chinese market during the fourth quarter of the year, it will offer a smart experience to Chinese customers through its design. The new model shares Hyundai’s new design philosophy of ‘Sensuous Sportiness’ which was first announced at the Geneva Motor Show in March.
“China is evolving quickly and so are Chinese people’s attitudes. They are more self-confident, positive and creative. The LAFESTA will help us reflect this shifting trend,” said Simon Loasby, the Director and Head of Hyundai China Design. “It’s a clear demonstration of how our newly announced design vision, ‘Sensuous Sportiness’ comes to life in Hyundai vehicles.”
Among the exhibits, the Le Fil Rouge Concept, which made its world premiere in Geneva last month, took center stage, as a visionary concept that demonstrates Hyundai’s new design philosophy ‘Sensuous Sportiness’.
“Building on our long history of creating distinctive and sporty character in vehicles, we will create a new era for Hyundai design,” said SangYup Lee, Head of Hyundai Styling. “‘Sensuous Sportiness’, the new theme for Hyundai design reflects our goal to build a beloved brand by creating vehicles with heightened emotional value.”
LAFESTA integrates a number of Hyundai’s industry-leading technological innovations in coupe-style sleek design, powerful powertrain and advanced driving assistance systems, which all help the vehicle set the industry standard. Producing the vehicle’s excellent performance will be a 1.6 turbo GDi engine twinned with a 7-speed dual clutch transmission for seamless and efficient gear changes. On the inside the spacious cockpit environment is driver focused and designed to deliver an engaging drive, but also features practical ergonomics and quality materials. Keeping all occupants safe, the LAFESTA features the most advanced and safest driving assistance systems. Further details will be disclosed in due course, following the official launch later this year
Quality Hyundai, Smart Future
Beijing Hyundai today reiterated its new Chinese market strategy slogan “Quality Hyundai, Smart Future”, which was first announced last year in its 15th anniversary in the Chinese market, as the company sets about to develop and embrace the new generation, rapidly developing in the Chinese market. Hyundai will further enhance its customer-centric vehicle development philosophy and pursue all-out changes in products, technologies and services to effectively meet the diverse customer demands and desires in the world’s largest automotive market.
To embody the new brand strategy, Beijing Hyundai showcased its cutting-edge exhibition at the show alongside its line-up of new energy vehicles (NEV). The company took the opportunity to exhibit its cutting edge clean mobility technology, including Hyundai’s second-generation fuel cell electric vehicle NEXO, which combines the practicality of an SUV with clean advanced fuel cell technology, offering the most advanced technology on the market with autonomous driving capabilities and smart advanced driver assistance systems. In addition to the NEXO, the company also displayed a variety of exhibits showing Hydrogen Life Vision with fuel cell technology.
Furthermore, the recently unveiled compact SUV ENCINO and ix35 Connected show car boost Hyundai’s strong and smart SUV line-up in China. ENCINO is designed for the Chinese market and its practical forward-thinking new generation; while ix35 Connected show car is equipped with Baidu’s connectivity technology such as the IoT and AR navigation.