A standout: How the Hyundai Staria breaks passenger van norms
Joey Deriquito · Aug 1, 2023 12:05 PM
When you see a typical passenger van, you will probably think of the Toyota Hiace and the Nissan NV350 Urvan, but not necessarily the Hyundai Staria. The South Korean van doesn’t fit our perceived notions of what a passenger van is, a boxy rectangularly shaped vehicle with a rounded nose and sliding doors. The Hyundai Staria gives off something more futuristic with its softer curves and cleaner look.
That being said, here is how the Hyundai Staria breaks passenger van stereotypes and norms and elevates the van segment to a new level.
We have first to look at the Hyundai Staria's design. It's vastly different from its competitors, which still retain their boxy shapes.
The South Korean van goes for curves and cleanness instead, along with its futuristic front. Like many other modern vehicles, the headlights have been positioned in the middle of the bumper, with the daytime running lights being shifted to the top near the hood.
Depending on your variant, the daytime running light may be replaced with a reflector or a black accent instead. Regardless, the overall design of the Staria sets it apart from the rest while maintaining the roominess needed in a passenger vehicle.
Another critical difference between the Hyundai Staria and its competitors is its massive greenhouse, thanks to its large windows. While most vans get big windows, the Staria just does it better as it can easily let more natural light into the van.
It's an excellent way for the passengers to enjoy the view and for the van's driver to see better outside the windows. However, some glass protrudes from the doors for the front windows, even if you have them down. It's a small price, but the remaining glass isn’t intrusive and lets you quickly access drive-thru windows or reach for something outside.
While the rest of the competitors of the Hyundai Staria are rear-wheel drive, it breaks the norms by being front-wheel drive. It means that instead of a pushing motion, the van relies on a pulling one, which can be advantageous in certain situations.
It also breaks the norms by being available locally with all-wheel drive, which vans in its class don’t have access to. It means better access to grip, and the van will have an easier time hauling load thanks to all four wheels transferring power to the ground.
Even if you go for the entry-level commuter variant of the Staria, you will still get a digital gauge cluster with the van, albeit much smaller than its higher-grade counterparts.
Regardless, you still get access to the car’s three different drive modes, which are Eco, Normal, and Sport, which slightly alter the vehicle's driving dynamics.
If you go for the higher models, they grant you access to a bigger digital gauge cluster, a touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, and an around-view monitor which will help you maneuver the van through tight spaces such as parking lots and drive-thrus.
Overall, the Hyundai Staria isn’t your typical commuter van as the brand has changed it to become much more than that. It may have premium and cargo variants, but it is still a people mover at heart, and you can tell that Hyundai put a lot of thought into prioritizing the vehicle's comfort and convenience.
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A car enthusiast at heart, nothing excites Joey more than an open road and a full tank of gas. Ready with the latest information about cars, he constantly studies and researches the latest happenings in the motoring world while caring for a car that's an extension of himself.