Having spent the whole year talking about serious things like electrification, manufacturing efficiency and whatever niche-filling crossover is coming next, the SEMA show is a chance for car companies to let their hair down. To create a show car that’s just a bit silly.
In the case of Hyundai, that hit of silliness is the Veloster Grappler. The Korean firm’s coupe-ish hatchback is the starting point of a thorough transformation, which yields a “rugged and sporty all-terrain compact, ready for any all-terrain adventure”. Just in case it wasn’t clear, this is a car for doing ‘all-terrain’ stuff.
The ride height has been increased dramatically, making room for the new Method Racing wheels and the fat boots they wear, which are - you guessed it - all-terrain tyres. For when the extra ground clearance isn’t enough, there are front and rear bash guards to protect the under-body.
On the roof, there’s a Thule ‘utility basket’, affixed to which is a Baja Designs light bar and a removable Goal Zero solar panel. Sounds like an awful lot of phone calls were needed to make this thing a reality, doesn’t it?
The Grappler has also been fitted with a cat-back Borla exhaust, and although we don’t know what engine is at the other end yet, we do know it’ll be kept nice and cool thanks to the Seibon vented carbonfibre bonnet.
The inside has been given a similarly drastic makeover, now sporting an integrated roll bar and Recaro seats with a natty ‘hounds tooth’ chequered pattern on the fabric. You get all sorts of adventurous bits and pieces in there too, including traction mats, a portable power station fed by the aforementioned solar panel, a first aid kit, a tent and a dirty great shovel.
Want to see it in full? You’ll have to wait until the SEMA show kicks off on 5 November.