When the Matrix was introduced into the South African market for the first time, this MPV (Multi-purpose vehicle) offered a combination of high value and good specification, in a stylish, class-leading package. Today, the new-look 1.6 Matrix offers Hyundai drivers so much more…
Hyundai Motor Company is well aware of the fact that the new Matrix would have to compete in an already crowded segment of the market and therefore carefully analysed the market trends and customer feedback to come up with a fresh new look that would distinguis itself and the Hyundai brand from the rest of the pack.
The new Matrix was designed in Korea, with the exterior design developments assigned to the Ulsan R & D Centre and the interior details entrusted to the Namyang R & D Centre. Cognisant of the need to appeal widely to European markets, the crucial task of giving form to the Matrix’s exterior was handed to the famous design house, Pininfarina of Italy.
The result is wide, clean bodywork with broad surfaces, demonstrating the best of European design sensibilities at work.
The front-end styling sets the tone with its artful, sophisticated look and these design characteristics are echoed in the side and rear presentations. The steeply raked windshield maintains continuity with the bonnet and affords it superior aerodynamics and maximum road visibility.
Front grille treatment features bold black slats, imparting a rugged, high performance look to the Matrix. Sharpening the front-end aesthetics is the contemporary design of the headlamp assembly, incorporating MRF (Multi-focus Reflector) illumination and clear lens covers for improved nighttime visibility.
It is in the Matrix’s side view that the rounded surfaces of the bonnet give way to tighter, crisper lines and forms that contribute to its aerodynamic efficiency while guaranteeing that the Matrix will stand out in any crowd. The new Matrix offers a sporty character emphasised by the roof rails and the alloy wheels.
It is only once you climb inside the new Matrix that the line between passenger car and people carrier becomes blurred, with roominess, ergonomics, simplicity and elegance engineered into every detail. In designing the interior of the Matrix, Hyundai engineers sought to provide the driver and passengers with maximum leg, head and shoulder room and more usable, creative and interactive space.
Intelligent cabin layout and placement of instrumentation make time spent behind the wheel of Matrix a pleasure. The gauge panel has been relocated from behind the steering wheel to the middle of the dashboard.
The dials have been staggered for a 3-dimensional effect. The cabin of the Matrix is designed as a modern living space that takes into account the comfort and needs of all occupants. The driver’s seat has dual height adjusters and lumbar support, and all seats feature adjustable/removable headrests as well as sliding and reclining movement. The double folding feature of the rear seats (60:40 split design) takes versatility to a new level, effectively doubling the cargo space.
Other features include a cover for the cargo area, fold-up seatback trays, storage compartments under seats, cup holders for all occupants and 12 V power sockets between the front seats and in the cargo area.
Specification levels in the new Matrix leave nothing out, with power steering, electric windows, leather upholstery, central locking, climate controlled air-conditioning and a radio/CD combination audio system.
Driving the Matrix is Hyundai’s proven 1,6-litre alpha II engine. The DOHC inline 4-cylinder aluminium design generates maximum power of 76 kW at 5 800 r/min and a perky 141 Nm of torque at 4 500 r/min. The 1,6-litre engine delivers power to the front wheels via a 5-speed manual transmission.
The Matrix’s suspension system features the modified MacPherson strut assembly with coil springs up front, augmented by a T-shaped cross member, increasing lateral strength and delivering optimal wheel alignment for refined handling and cornering stability.
The rear suspension’s proven dual-link setup achieves outstanding steering stability. Gas-filled shock absorbers outperform oil-filled versions in limiting spring oscillations, reducing floor vibration and responding immediately to any irregularities in the road surface. The 15-inch alloy wheels are shod with 195/55 rubber, contributing to its excellent road holding manners.
Matrix bears witness to Hyundai’s commitment to ensuring the safety of the driver and occupants with an array of advanced active and passive safety features.
Optimally tuned seatbelts and a driver and passenger airbag, offer the first line of defence in frontal collisions.
High-tensile-strength steel plates account for 57 % of the vehicle’s total body weight, while energy dissipating and redirecting structures channel the force energy of impact away from the passenger compartment using a series of interlocking structural steel body members that yield a pattern of planned deformation. Side impact protection and dual heavy-duty centre floor cross members complete the structural safety characteristics of the Matrix.
Stopping power is exceptional thanks to the use of disks up front with drums in the rear, coupled to the ABS and EBD braking system. The Hyundai Matrix is a family vehicle and no effort or expense has been spared to ensure peace of mind when carrying your valuable cargo.
A 3 year/60 000 km Maintenance plan is standard on the Matrix.
A 5 year/150 000km Warranty plan is standard on the Matrix.