How Do You Pronounce Hyundai?

Have you ever heard the lyrics wrong in a song, only to spend years of your life singing the wrong lines? Then, someone points it out that you’ve been mispronouncing or mishearing it all this time. Believe it or not, the same scenario might apply to the automotive industry. And consumers could be mispronouncing brand names completely. For example, how do you pronounce Hyundai?

Hyundai is a South Korean automaker with a big presence here in the states. You might even be driving a Hyundai model you love right now. But there’s some interesting history behind the badge, the logo, and the pronunciation of the name. You might be “today years old” when you learn the right way to say Hyundai.

Front view of gray 2023 Hyundai Elantra, a small car no longer recommended by Consumer Reports
2023 Hyundai Elantra | Hyundai

How to officially pronounce ‘Hyundai’

You can love your Hyundai and still could be potentially mispronouncing it. According to Hyundai of Asheville, the official phonics for South Koreans is “HYUN-day.” If you’re across the pond in the UK, you might say, “High-un-dye-ay.” And here in the states, it’s most commonly pronounced as “Hon-day.” And it’s this “sounds like Sunday” pronunciation that the automaker officially endorses, according to Cars.com

Luckily, if you’ve been saying it wrong, Hyundai’s feelings aren’t hurt. They welcome any iteration so long as consumers keep buying and loving their cars.

A brief history behind the South Korean automaker

There’s even more behind the iconic Hyundai badge than you might think. The direct translation of the term “Hyundai” from Korean to English is “modernity.” And the automaker has maintained its name since it began back in 1947. The original slogan back then supported the name’s definition. “New Thinking, New Possibilities.” 

It was 1986 when the company burst onto the scene in the United States. At that time, there was a growing trend for automakers to abandon the entry-level car market. Manufacturers were focused on introducing high-end, high-priced models back then, creating a market void that Hyundai saw as an opportunity. 

Fast-forward to today’s market, and Hyundai has proven to follow through on its commitment to its consumers. The company has earned industry endorsements and high ratings for many of its vehicles. If you’re ready to start shopping or buying, these are the 2023 models Hyundai models to consider:

  • Palisade
  • Santa Fe
  • Tucson
  • Kona
  • Santa Cruz
  • Venue
  • NEXO
  • IONIQ 5
  • Elantra
  • Sonata

And there are exciting electrification options available as the company transitions to more eco-friendly and zero-emission designs. Hyundai demonstrates it’s positioned to continue growing and adapting to the ever-changing consumer demands and with innovation. 

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It turns out the founders and masterminds behind Hyundai’s inception put a lot of thought into developing everything about their brand, including the logo. The easily recognizable, slanted “H” has always maintained its simple yet modern-looking design. But there are meanings behind that design you may not know.

The logo is intended to represent two people shaking hands. It also symbolizes the Hyundai official commitment to teamwork and customer satisfaction. When you finally see it, you can envision a showroom salesman shaking hands with another impressed customer.

It’s that message of collaboration that Hyundai intended to bake into the logo design. And the silver oval wraparound is supposed to portray the global expansion plans Hyundai had to introduce people all over the globe to their cars.

No harm done if you’ve been mispronouncing it all this time. Now you know and have a little more insight into the company’s history and founding. The only question remaining is, which model will you be parking in your driveway in 2023?