10.05.2022 Press release

Trio of Wins for Hyundai at Autocar Awards 2022

  • SangYup Lee, Executive Vice President and Head of Hyundai Global Design Centre, named Design Hero of the Year
  • Hyundai IONIQ 5 recently named World Car Design of the Year, joining four GOOD DESIGN Awards for Hyundai and nine consecutive iF Design Award wins
  • Hyundai i20N wins Britain’s Most Affordable Driver’s Car
  • Best Large Car accolade goes to Hyundai SANTA FE

Press material

Hyundai has been awarded three trophies at the 2022 Autocar Awards, as decided by judges from the world’s oldest motoring magazine. Head of Hyundai Global Design Centre, SangYup Lee, is named Design Hero of the Year, while the Hyundai i20N wins Britain’s Most Affordable Driver’s Car and the Hyundai SANTA FE is named the Best Large Car.

The prestigious Autocar Awards recognize the very best of the automotive industry, whether it be innovative technologies or extraordinary design. For the first time, the 2022 ceremony incorporated both the Britain’s Best Driver’s Cars as well as Britain’s Best Cars Awards, giving a more comprehensive view of the automotive world than ever before. This year, the in-person ceremony returned, held at the impressive Silverstone Wing.

The title of Design Hero of the Year is given by Autocar to an individual who has made a significant impact in the world of automotive design, not just in the preceding year, but throughout their entire career. SangYup Lee’s recent work as the head of Hyundai Global Design Centre has garnered universal praise, including the IONIQ 5 which recently won World Car Design of the Year, alongside World Car of the Year and World Electric Vehicle of the Year.

But it’s the breadth of design excellence that impressed the judges. At the iF design Awards 2021, Hyundai won in nine separate categories, and has been victorious for nine consecutive years. In early 2021, Hyundai won four GOOD DESIGN Awards, including for the Prophecy concept car, which was also named ‘Best of the Best’ at the Red Dot design awards.

SangYup Lee joined Hyundai in 2016 and, as chief designer for Hyundai and Genesis, he’s overseeing the creation of 50 production cars at any one time across 11 design centres globally, with a team of 700 people. As a part of his role, he has masterminded a transformation in Hyundai design that has seen it become increasingly admired, most markedly for the IONIQ 5 but also for the upcoming IONIQ 6 and IONIQ 7, as previewed by the Prophecy and Seven concepts.

Mark Tisshaw Autocar Editor

SangYup Lee

Looking back through the previous winners of Autocar’s Design Hero Award, it’s a real honour to now be sitting alongside some of the people I consider to be my own design heroes. Thank you to the team at Autocar for recognising the work of the Hyundai Global Design Centre with such a prestigious accolade. I gratefully accept this award on behalf of all our designers and engineers, who are dedicated, talented, and endlessly creative, and who continue to innovate our brand from all over the world. As well as the Design Hero Award, Hyundai also won two product categories at the Autocar Awards, including Britain’s Most Affordable Driver’s Car for the i20 N. Tisshaw said: “The i20N secured victory here by quite some margin. With five judges awarding each car a score out of 25, the Hyundai i20 N bagged 102 points, well ahead of second place. It’s a cohesive, tenacious and serious proposition for keen drivers, this car, and one that moves the N sub-brand on significantly, even from the impressive level of the larger i30 N.

SangYup Lee Executive Vice President and Head of Hyundai Global Design Centre, Hyundai Motor

Since its introduction in 2019 the i20 N has consistently impressed, winning a series of awards, including Top Gear Car of the Year and UK Performance Car of the Year. Priced from £25,220, the comprehensively equipped Hyundai i20 N builds on the strengths of Hyundai's renowned, performance-focused N brand and the success of the acclaimed i20. A true sporting icon, the i20N also takes inspiration and engineering values from the multiple-rally-winning i20 Coupe WRC car. It’s equally at home delivering its unique brand of exhilarating performance both on the road and racetrack.

Meanwhile, the SANTA FE was named Autocar’s Best Large Car.

If you think big cars can’t be frugal, that well-priced, hardworking SUVs can’t feel plush or inviting, or that plug-in hybrids impose too many compromises to be useful in real-world family motoring, the Santa Fe stands ready to show you different.

Mark Tisshaw Autocar Editor

Priced from £40,250, the SANTA FE is Hyundai’s longest-running SUV, first sold in the UK in 2001. The D-segment SUV has been praised for its comfort and roominess, comprehensive standard features and functional cabin design. With the latest version offering a series of improvements to offer a more premium choice for its customers. Available with either the option of a hybrid and plug-in hybrid powertrain for the first time, it also features a bold and distinctive new design as well as a range of new technology and safety features.

With a prestigious accolade for Hyundai design and two victories for almost opposite ends of our product range, the Autocar Awards 2022 perfectly exemplifies the strength and breadth of the Hyundai line-up. The rate of innovation and advancement at Hyundai never slows, and it’s enormously gratifying for us to see the respected experts at Britain’s oldest motoring magazine so passionately believing in what we’re doing.

Ashley Andrew Managing Director, Hyundai Motor UK

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