IT’S a mighty good thing that my bedroom wall has lots of sensible, framed pictures on it. Otherwise – and I know I’d get the mickey ripped right out of me for this one – I’d have to admit to Blu-tacking a brand-new Hyundai onto it.
Bedroom walls, if you’re about nine, are hugely important galleries, curating all that’s great and good in the car world – and they have a genuine impact on the real world too, because a generation of kids who had the Ferrari Testarossa and Porsche 911 Turbo on theirs are now all grown up, and pushing the prices up for these 1980s performance heroes. I remember a time, not that long ago, when the Testarossa was regarded as Maranello’s dodgier efforts, and you could get one for under £40,000. Not any more.
Mine, growing up in the Nineties, had the Ferrari F355 and the TVR Cerbera. I’ll even own up to sticking the, erm, Ford Puma on it, but it never, ever had a Hyundai on it, not even the original Coupé from 1995, which is far better-looking than most petrolheads will readily admit.
But if I were a nine-year-old in 2020, there’s a sporting chance that the new Prophecy might make it into the hallowed territory of today’s bedroom wall, alongside the Ferrari F8 Tributo and the McLaren Speedtail. It’s a four-door saloon that runs on electricity, but since when does Hyundai come up with a car that looks like a Lamborghini at the business end, a Mercedes CLS 55 AMG in the middle, and has a rump that looks curiously like that of a 911 Carrera RSR? The Korean carmaker says that it’s designed to make you think of cars from the 1930s, but I don’t think they’re fooling anyone – they’re clearly taking on Tesla, and nicking a few bits from old supercars while they’re at it.
The front end, at least, is fairly easy to explain; the new Prophecy has been penned by the same bloke who did the Lamborghini Murcielago, and it shows. It’s even braver on the inside too, where Hyundai’s decided that a steering wheel is far too old-hat and fitted a joystick instead,and trimmed the seats with tartan cloth that looks like it’s been nicked straight out an early Lotus Esprit.
You probably won’t have even needed to read this far to work out that this isn’t going to replace the i30 Fastback any time soon; it’s a concept car, a one-off flight of fancy that, with no Geneva Motorshow to head to anymore, has only just been unveiled properly. The chances of it going into production are about as likely as Sir Alan Sugar being named as the next James Bond, but it’s relevant because some of its more out-there looks might make it onto Hyundai dealer forecourts in a couple of years’ time.
Oh, and it because it reminds nine-year-olds that you have to be Ferrari or Bugatti to make a car that looks really cool. Well, I’d have it on my bedroom wall, anyway…
David Simister is the editor of Classic Car Weekly