Hyundai today pulled the covers off the 45 concept, a design exercise that looks forward to the brand's future electric vehicle designs while drawing inspiration from one of its first-ever concept cars.
The new concept's name commemorates the 45th anniversary of the 1974 Pony Coupe Concept, a car that Hyundai says "first established (its) design DNA" when it debuted at the Turin auto show in 1974. The 45 Concept's shape, meanwhile, is actually more reminiscent of the original four-door Pony hatchback that debuted as a 1975 model.
Despite looking very much like a concept car, Hyundai says the 45 was drawn up around the brand's new Sensuous Sportiness design language, which is set to make its showroom debut later in 2019 on the 2020 Sonata family sedan.
Inside, there's no central touchscreen; instead, there are displays and controls embedded in the dashboard itself. Hyundai describes the cabin as minimalist, but has incorporated furniture-like wood, fabric, and leather elements intended to create a warm atmosphere. Long pockets in the doors are designed to accommodate books(!) or tablets for storage, but the pockets themselves are transparent so you can still see what's on the page or screen.
As a nod to a future of autonomous driving, the 45 Concept's front seats swivel so that the car's occupants can face each other, while rear-seat occupants enjoy lounge-style seating.
Hyundai doesn't get into what kind of performance or driving range the 45 would offer in production form, but it does explain that the batteries live under the floor to maximize interior space, while the cabin's floor is dressed in "comfortable" carpet that further warms up the look and feel of the interior while reducing road noise.