loading video...

hyundai faithfully recreates pony coupe based on original 1974 design that never came true

Pony Coupe Concept makes its debut in Lake Como


After resting on the back burner for decades, Hyundai Motor Company has finally materialized its Pony Coupe concept vehicle that originated in 1974. Dreams do come true for Giorgetto Giugiaro of GFG Style – the original designer of Hyundai’s Pony Coupe who is now accompanied by his son Fabrizio in remaking the vehicle. The designer watched on as the concept was revealed at the historic Villa Pliniana in Lake Como, Italy – the rightful home country and birthplace of the original – ahead of the Concorso d’Eleganza 2023.


The recreation remains faithful to the original design, which first made its debut at the 1974 Turin Motor Show, with its wedge-style nose, circular headlamps, and origami-like geometric lines, the distinctive visual notes realizing Hyundai Motor Company and Giorgetto Giugiaro’s vision. The two-door sports car’s exterior featured a sleek roofline, pure surfaces, proportion profiles, and a unique shape for the B pillar, which elevated its daring spirit.


Stepping inside, the interior showcased an iconic sensibility with the Giugiaro monocoque design and driver-centered floating architecture. The concept design also served as a huge source of inspiration for Giugiaro’s work on the DeLorean DMC 12 that debuted in 1983 and was famously used in the ‘Back to the Future’ movies.

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
images courtesy of GFG Style and Hyundai Motor Company



Hyundai Motor Company taps Giorgetto Giugiaro 


In 1974, when Hyundai Motor Company was still in its early days of vehicle production, the company’s executives tapped Giorgetto Giugiaro of GFG Style – who also designed Laffite Automobili’s Hyper SUV Atrax – to design Hyundai’s first independent model and Korea’s first mass-produced car.


At the time, there was no vehicle design and styling capability in Korea, so Hyundai Motor commissioned Giugiaro to design, make blueprints, and build five prototypes, one of which was a coupe. In the process of designing and prototyping, Hyundai decided to show the Pony and Pony Coupe at the Turin Motor Show in 1974 to promote the brand’s debut in the global market. 

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
Pony Coupe has made its world premiere nearly 50 years after its debut at the 1974 Turin Motor Show



Hyundai’s pony coupe now a reality


The Pony Coupe was intended for North American and European markets, but the project came to a stop in 1981 just before mass production amid the adverse global economic conditions. While the concept was an unfinished dream at the time, it helped kickstart the Korean automotive industry by directly influencing Hyundai’s first independent production models under its Pony nameplate, which ran from 1975 to 1990 and were sold worldwide.


Now, the Pony Coupe has made its comeback in its original fashion but with a more impactful presence. Of his original design, Giorgetto Giugiaro says, ‘I designed the Hyundai Pony when I was still a young designer at the start of my career. I felt very proud that I was in charge of creating a vehicle for a company and country that was about to take on a fiercely competitive global market. Now, I’m deeply honored that Hyundai has asked me to rebuild it for posterity and as a celebration of the brand’s heritage.’

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
the world premiere took place at historic Villa Pliniana in Lake Como, Italy

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
the design follows the exacting details of the original 1974 design by Giorgetto Giugiaro


Hyundai’s Pony Coupe

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
Hyundai Pony Coupe concept

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
the front exterior resembles a vacuum’s mouth

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
side view

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
top view

hyundai pony coupe giorgetto giugiaro
interior view of the render



project info:


name: Pony Coupe Concept

brand: Hyundai Motor Company

design: Giorgetto Giugiaro

studio: GFG Style

suscribe on designboom
- see sample
- see sample
suscribe on designboom


a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

designboom will always be there for you

milan, new york, beijing, tokyo,  since 1999