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The Unusual Suspect: 2014 Hyundai Eqqus

Those who crave a luxurious driving experience have a lot of choices when it comes to manufacturers, but may want to look beyond all the obvious places when starting out on a shopping expedition. There’s a pleasant surprise waiting over at Hyundai, as it pulls out all the stops on its top-of-the-line Equus model, writes our automotive editor Sally Miller Wyatt.

(Above): Exterior view of the 2014 Hyundai Eqqus.

Labeled as a premium luxury model, Equus is loaded with many luxurious features, especially so with its total redesign for 2014. For this model year, expect to see even more bells and whistles, throughout the exterior and interior, with its improved vehicle dynamics, and a host of cutting-edge driver technologies and safety enhancements.

All this is on top of a passenger compartment that is more than generous in its head and legroom. In fact, the rear seat is so obliging, your teenage basketball player will be able to stretch out in total comfort, on seats that are not only adjustable, but cooled, as well. And, rear seat passengers can enjoy entertainment on the dual 9.2-in. high-resolution rear seat entertainment monitors, located in the back of the driver and front passenger head rests. Rear seat passengers can even search restaurant locations and provide navigation system directions to the driver’s navigation screen.

(Above): Interior view of the 2014 Hyundai Eqqus.

As a parent of an adolescent that seemed to add inches by the hour, a rear seat of this size and with these features could be considered a true luxury.

So, what all is new on the 2014 models? What isn’t? On the exterior, you’ll find new 19-inch polished silver wheels, a new front bumper fascia and grille design, jeweled front headlamps, new side mirrors for improved aerodynamics, and restyled tail lamps and LED fog lamps.

On the interior, the instrument panel and center stack have been completely redesigned for improved ergonomics, and include a larger navigation screen. There is also a new layout on the steering wheel. The Equus’ ivory leather seating is complemented with genuine wood trim accents, and even the rear center console has been re-tooled.

The 2014 Hyundai Equus’ new suspension can be modified to suit the driver’s mood: sport mode is for a crisper drive experience, while normal offers enhanced ride comfort. There’s even a snow mode, for those who spend time in the mountains.

(Above): Exterior view of the 2014 Hyundai Eqqus.

As for advanced safety features, all the best are on board. To avoid distracted driving and help drivers keep their eyes on the road, the Hyundai Equus has a standard Blind Spot Detection System that shows an alert in either mirror. When parking or navigating tight driving situations, the Equus offers a multi-view camera system that provides an aerial view of the vehicle with a split screen perspective, so not only do you see from above, but from behind. Rear Cross-traffic alert lets you know who may be passing behind you as you put the car in reverse. There is also lane departure warning, to alert you to drifting, and a total of nine air bags on board, including one for the driver’s knee.

Your insurance agent will probably appreciate the Equus’ strong unibody construction, along with rear and front crumple zones, and 5-mph energy-absorbing bumpers.

Behind the wheel, you’re going to feel pampered with the leather- and wood-trim accents. Seats are very supportive, but bolstering on the sides makes it difficult to get in and out easily. Visibility is good to the front and sides.

(Above): Exterior view of the 2014 Hyundai Eqqus.

On the road, we found the car’s 5.0-liter V-8 engine, paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission, was extremely powerful and quickly responsive. Road noise at freeway speed was negligent.

The 2014 Hyundai Equus is a very classy-looking car that is loaded with a lot of classy features and parent-pleasing safety technology. It doesn’t hurt that there’s generous amount of leg and headroom for your passengers, either, whether they are gangly teens or burly adults.

Sally Miller Wyatt is a freelance writer who writes family-oriented auto reviews for newspapers, magazines and the Web.


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