For discerning luxury customers who want something different that the usual mainstream blue-chip brands, Hyundai has offered the Equus sedan since 2010. Now, at the 2013 New York auto show, the Korean automaker has taken the wraps off of the updated 2014 Equus, which features a raft of cosmetic and technological updates.
Unless you look closely, you may miss the modifications to the 2014 model; the aesthetic changes to the Equus' exterior are subtle, but help to keep the big sedan looking fresh halfway through its lifecycle. Hyundai has gifted the Equus with a new grille – it has thinner chrome bars – and a revised front fascia with less chrome and LED foglamps. The headlights are now blacked-out, the side mirrors have been redesigned for better aerodynamics, and the taillights have new LED elements. Most noticeable are the new 19-inch polished, turbine-blade alloy wheels, which are shod in P245/45R19 rubber up front and P275/40R19 in back. There is one new exterior paint color: night shadow brown.
Changes to the cabin are more drastic, however. The Equus has a completely redesigned dashboard that is now oriented more horizontally, with long pieces of wood and metal adorning the cabin. Hyundai says that it has upgraded the quality of all interior materials, paying special attention to touch points, like the new shifter. The automaker has also worked to make the cabin of the Equus user-friendlier with clearer pictures for the climate control and better ergonomics for the steering wheel controls. There is a new 12.3-inch TFT display in place of traditional gauges on the top-spec Ultimate model; Signature models retain the outgoing car's IP, but gain a new seven-inch TFT center cluster screen. In the rear, there are two 9.2-inch entertainment screens that replace the single screen from the outgoing model. The rear passengers also get a redesigned center console on Ultimate models and can now search for restaurant locations and send destination information to the front navigation screen. An ivory leather color with contrasting piping is new for 2014, as are the jet black with walnut, ivory with ash, or saddle brown with madrona trim choices.
Hyundai has also seen to up the amount of standard technology on the Equus. Both Signature and Ultimate models now come equipped with blind spot detection, smart cruise control that can now bring the vehicle to a complete stop and restart driving again, rear cross-traffic alert, a larger 9.2-inch LCD navigation screen, three-zone climate control (up from dual-zone), and a new "card-type" proximity key.
The same Tau 5.0-liter V-8 carries over from before, mated to an eight-speed automatic. The V-8 continues to be rated at 429 hp and 376 lb-ft of torque. EPA mileage estimates also remain unchanged at 15/23 mpg city/highway.
Expect to see pricing announced closer to the 2014 Equus' launch at the end of this May. We don't expect prices to move much from the $59,250 base price with destination the 2013 model costs.