UPDATE, APRIL 16: Hyundai Australia has revealed more about its Pony EV concept. This story has been updated to reflect those details.
The Hyundai Pony EV concept is a one-off styling exercise that shows off the role EV technology will play in the exploding restomod scene.
Legendary automobile designer Giorgetto Giugiaro conceived the first generation of Pony. In its day it was an icon of personal mobility created by Hyundai during its mass production from 1975-1990. The hatchback car was the nation’s first mass-produced and exported vehicle.
In 2021, championed by Hyundai’s head of interior design, Hak Soo Ha, the funky electric vehicle is based on an original 1970s Hyundai Pony.
Soo Ha and his team have set about refurbing and subtly tweaking the style of the Pony, which now presents a streak of contemporary flare.
These stylistic upgrades include reconfigured LED headlights, pixelated LED taillights, retro alloy wheels and cameras mounted on each end of the boxy bonnet, replacing traditional wing mirrors.
Inside, the EV Pony is even more avant-garde, with a steam-punk style gas-lamp instrument cluster to gauge speed, art deco three-point steering wheel, and an appropriate blend of chrome trim pieces contrasted by a black leather interior.
It also contains more modern elements, not only retro style, including; digital touch transmission, cradle space for a mobile phone and a voice-activated steering wheel.
Tucked away inside the boot is also a “last-mile mobility device” as Hyundai calls it – known to the rest of us as an electric scooter.
Hyundai has confirmed the normal internal combustion engine and transmission have been ditched in favour of an electric motor with a single-speed transmission, however, no details of the charged powertrain have been provided by the Korean automaker.
To an extent, the show Pony showcases what we can expect for the future of the automotive restomod industry.
With the way electric vehicles are being designed with a skateboard-style battery chassis architecture, it’s going to be increasingly easy for third-party modders to simply buy a ubiquitous platform, and then adorn it with a retro body shell.
One of the best examples of this type of car-making is California-based company ZeroLabs, which has created a blank canvas EV platform specifically made for moulding with classic car shells.
ZeroLabs's classic electric platform.
Hyundai hasn’t gone that far with the Pony, but it’s a seriously cool design study nonetheless.
The EV Pony featured at the recently opened Hyundai Motorstudio Busan in South Korea as part of its ‘Reflections in Motion’ exhibition, on now until June 27.
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