Hyundai is the new Jaguar?

“Hey, what is that a new Jaguar?” my neighbour asked as I arrived home from work.
“No, it’s the new Hyundai XG350” I answered, awaiting his reply with a certain sense of dread. The name Hyundai still lacks clout in the select department.

“Hyundai huh?” he stated, “I hear they build pretty good cars these days”
Taken aback by his positive response, I mumbled something like, “Yeah, they have come a long way in a relatively short time!”

Of course my neighbour was absolutely correct in his assessment. Much to the chagrin of the competition, Hyundai is quickly becoming recognized as a manufacturer of quality vehicles. Gone are the days of having to hide your Hyundai in the garage before anyone noticed you were home.

The Hyundai XG350 is a relatively new, significant player in the mid-size sedan market. Introduced mid-way through 2003 as a 2004 model, it represents a full out assault on the Honda Accord EX V6, Toyota Camry LE V6 and new Nissan Maxima 3.5 SE. The only thing missing is brand recognition, and if my noisy neighbor is any indication, that seems to be changing in a hurry.

Styled in a classic Far East meets Western Europe shape, the eye appeal of the Hyundai XG350 is quite striking. A blend of functionality and design, it oozes chrome and faux wood at every turn.

Pontiac GTO

The 2004 Pontiac GTO is a rear-wheel drive coupe based on the Holden Monaro CV.
Why Has Front-Wheel Drive Been So Prominent?

Traction: In wet and/ or slippery situations and when not under hard accelerations, front-wheel drive vehicles have more weight over the front tires providing more traction.

Packaging: In front-wheel drive vehicles, the engine and drivetrain can be assembled as one unit then simply dropped into the frame during assembly ultimately leading to increased assembly efficiency.

Price: Front-wheel drive configurations require less work and fewer components so it is cheaper to manufacture.

Interior Space: Without a driveshaft running down the middle of the vehicle allows for increased passenger room and the absence of a rear suspension creates more trunk space.

Demand: Americans wanted the front-wheel drive vehicles that handled better on snow and ice AND better fuel consumption.

Whether you prefer front-wheel or rear-wheel drive is basically based on preference. Though many of the new rear-wheel drive vehicles are targeted towards young, affluent males, I believe everyone regardless of age, sex or driving experience can enjoy the benefits that accompany a rear-wheel drive configuration.