An unlikely story was reported on Twitter by an owner of a Tesla Model 3. Hyundai rented his electric car to him for a week to compare it to its new electric sedan Ioniq 6. The proof exists thanks to the many cameras that are located throughout the car placed .
Article updated March 26, 2023 : We finally have the end of the story, after we contacted the owner of the Tesla Model 3 rented by Hyundai through Turo. It was Hyundai Canada, as part of the ” Training Academy what appears to be a sales training center. This is in line with the hypothesis we wrote at the end of this news item. The Tesla Model 3 was certainly used to create a sales pitch for the Hyundai Ioniq 6 against Elon Musk’s company electric car.
The opportunity to also take an overall picture, showing the Hyundai Ioniq 6 next to the Tesla Model 3 rented by the Korean company for this occasion. The Tesla owner had deleted the Twitter feed because he didn’t want to hurt Turo and Hyundai or lead to layoffs. This photo is from us from a Facebook group which Canadian Hyundai dealers seem to be integrating.
Original article, March 25, 2023 : When designing a car, an important step is the benchmark for the competition. It’s about analyzing what other automakers are doing. It can compare trunk size, performance, materials used, etc. Usually engineers travel anonymously to dealers. Sometimes manufacturers buy a competing car outright. This was recently the case with Toyota, which dismantled a Tesla Model Y before calling it a work of art.
But it seems that a different method has now been chosen: renting a car from a private individual. It must be said that it is now easy to rent a specific model, on rental applications between individuals. Conversely, a professional rental company does not necessarily guarantee you a specific model. And Hyundai seems to have taken advantage of this new opportunity.
When Hyundai leases a Model 3
On Twitter, @Mateen Omair told the unlikely story of his Tesla Model 3 being leased by a Hyundai employee. THE Twitter feed the telling of the story has since been removed, but is still accessible from the Google cache.
The man who rented his car to him for a week allegedly told him he would use it for ” circulate locally“. But the Tesla owner kept getting reports that the doors and trunk had been left open. He then accessed the car’s cameras live, remotely, and saw it parked inside, with Hyundai logos on the wall. In one of the images we see the edge of an Ioniq 6.
The employee eventually confessed
When the lease ended, the Tesla owner questioned the Hyundai employee. Who finally admitted to borrowing the car to analyze it from all sides for the launch of the new Hyundai Ioniq 6.
The engineers of the Korean manufacturer have also a priori tested the FSD (Full Self-Driving), the famous autonomous driving function of the company Elon Musk. For now, the Hyundi Ioniq 6 is equipped with level 2 semi-autonomous driving, which is much less advanced than Tesla’s FSD.
The Hyundai employee would have been delighted if he had managed to drastically increase the space for rear passengers on the Ioniq 6 compared to the Model 3. And having tried both, Hyundai’s electric sedan is indeed ultra-spacious in the back. But it happens at the expense of the trunkmuch smaller, and with a trunk (frunk) almost non-existent compared to the Tesla.
We’ve reached out to the owner of the Tesla Model 3 via Twitter to understand why his story was removed and we’ll update this article based on his response. However, this story allows us to get a little closer behind the scenes of car manufacturers when designing and marketing a new car.
It is quite possible that this rental was not done to improve the Ioniq 6, whose design had already been completed, but to train Hyundai salesmen in preparation for marketing the car in the United States. Enough to give them arguments to respond to customers who would come to see the new electric sedan if they hesitated with the Tesla Model 3.
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