Happy birthday to Hyundai! This year marks the 30th anniversary of Hyundai selling its first car in the U.S. Yes, it was in 1986 that the Korean brand began selling its Hyundai Elantra on American soil. To put it in perspective, that was the same year that we were watching movies like Top Gun, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and The Karate Kid Part II. Robert Palmer was telling you you’re Addicted to Love, while Bon Jovi was singing You Give Love a Bad Name.
In 1986, the New York Mets clinched the World Series, the Boston Celtics won the NBA Championship, and a horse named Ferdinand took the Kentucky Derby. It was the year of the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster and the Iran-Contra scandal. A first-class stamp cost 22 cents, and a gallon of regular gas was 93 cents.
And it was all three decades ago this year. Certainly a lot has changed since then, both globally and in the U.S., for the world in general and for this automaker. When Hyundai began selling its Elantra in the U.S., all of the brand’s vehicles were manufactured elsewhere and imported into the country. But today, more than 60 percent of the Hyundai vehicles sold in the U.S. are also made here.
The Hyundai lineup has also expanded well beyond the Elantra over the past 30 years. Today, as the fifth largest automaker on the planet, Hyundai sells 14 different vehicles in the U.S., still including the Hyundai Elantra, but also sedans like the Hyundai Sonata and SUVs like the 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe.
In fact, you can view and test drive those vehicles (and more!) seven days a week at our San Diego Hyundai dealership, Kearny Mesa Hyundai. Don’t you deserve a new car or SUV anyway? Just think of it as a 30th birthday present.