Gen 1 - Special Edition Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution

The UK saw the introduction of the up-rated Hyundai Coupe in June 1999 . This was to be a limited edition coupe (about 1500), the last change of the coupe as we know it, before the introduction of the re-styled coupe next year.
Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution
The most noticeable change is the new 'wing-tipped' spoiler. Unlike the 'aesthetic' spoiler of the standard coupes' this new spoiler would actually create more downforce, while a re-designed front bumper aids aerodynamics.

The Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution also has the benefit of new lumpier cams, an improved air filter and an uprated exhaust system to provide better performance. Although having another 17bhp over the standard 2.0 litre coupe (137bhp) there is little evidence of the performance modifications doing their job.
Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution
Interior little changes include aluminium gear knob, silver kickplates, white dials and lambswool carpets. The exterior is finished off with new 16" alloy wheels branded with the 'H' logo, with new brake pads lurking behind.

There is no denying that this is a very attractive car, but for now I'll stick to my SE.

Article featured on Hyundai UK website


A new road going version of the Hyundai Coupe F2 Rally car appeared in UK showrooms on 14 June 1999.
Called the Coupe F2 Evolution and priced at £19,299, the car boasts more power than the current Coupe, and a whole host of interior and exterior modifications that have taken styling cues from the Hyundai World rally programme.

Power on the F2 Evolution has been increased by 12% to 154bhp, and maximum torque has increased from 134lbs ft at 4900rpm to 140lbs ft at 4900rpm.

This has been possible through fitting a larger bore exhaust and changing the car's fuel inlet camshaft. This increase in power has also helped reduce the 0-62mph dash from 8.6 to 8.1 seconds.

McLaren F1 stylist Peter Stevens and Hyundai World Rally team Motor Sport Developments (MSD) have both helped Hyundai in their bid to make the road going Coupe look more like the F2 rally car.

On the exterior the F2 Evolution has new bigger 16 inch five-spoke alloy wheels shod with lower profile Yokohama tyres, while a Peter Stevens-designed deeper front spoiler and rear spoiler complete with integral brake light has helped further transform the Coupe's curvy exterior.

On the inside a mixture of leather and chrome helps brighten up the car's interior, while cream dials give the driver more of a sporty feel. Each F2 Coupe receives an uprated Sony CD system and a Thatcham Category 1 alarm system.

These changes add to the lengthy list of standard equipment on the Coupe, which includes ABS brakes, leather upholstery, cruise control, electric windows, sunroof and mirrors.

Hyundai hopes to sell around 1,500 of these cars in the UK in 1999. Since launching the Coupe in 1996 Hyundai Car (UK) has sold nearly 10,000 cars in the UK.

Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution

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Hyundai Coupe F2 Evolution - Main Changes
Power up by 12% to 154bhp
Zero to sixty acceleration reduced to 8.1 seconds
Peter Stevens-styled front spoiler and rear wing
Five-spoke 16-inch alloy wheels and Yokohama tyres
Leather-trimmed armrest, gear lever gaiter and handbrake gaiter
Cream-coloured dials and chrome detailing
Sony CD ICE system & Thatcham Category 1 alarm system
Priced at £19,299 on the road

Rally car performance - sports car comfort
The F2 Evolution is the most highly specified model ever seen in the Coupe range. It sits very firmly at the top of the Coupe tree with a wide range of enhancements to the mechanical specification and to the interior. Hyundai approached Motor Sport Developments (MSD), the company that builds the Coupe F2 World rally cars, to develop the F2 Evolution road car. MSD has been Hyundai's motor sports operator since 1997, when it became the first Western company ever contracted by a Korean firm to run an international motor sports project.

MSD set about creating a car that was dynamically superior, not an easy job when the base Coupe already has ABS brakes, leather upholstery, cruise control and electric sunroof, windows and mirrors. On the mechanical side, MSD concentrated its efforts on the engine and brakes.

As well as performance-enhancing modifications, MSD created a package of trim upgrades, increasing both the sporting appeal and comfort of the Coupe.

It may not have the exact specification of the rally engine which has no less than 265bhp! but the F2 Evolution boasts a number of modifications that make it the most powerful engine in the Coupe range. Based on the 2.0-litre four-cylinder twin cam engine fitted to the Coupe, it is enhanced to increase power by 12 per cent to 154bhp. The first major change is the camshaft, borrowed from Hyundai's 1.8-litre Beta engine. The exhaust has also been upgraded, a new freer-flowing system being manufactured by Magnex, which also makes exhausts for Aston Martin. The overall effect of these changes is to increase power to 154bhp and maximum torque by 5 per cent, from 134lb ft to 140lb ft generated at 4900rpm.

As on the standard Coupe, there is a choice of five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic transmission for an extra £799.

New brake pads were jointly developed by MSD and AP Racing (the brake suppliers for the rally car), to enhance the current four-wheel disc brake set-up. These reduce fade under extreme conditions, improve feel and provide better heat dissipation.

Wheels and tyres
Specially designed German-made ATS 16-inch five-spoke alloy wheels closely emulate the look of the rally-winning Hyundai Coupe. Soft-compound Yokohama tyres offer better grip around corners.

The already generous comfort specification of the standard Coupe is taken to a new level.
New standard features include:

In Car Entertainment
A powerful Sony CD hi-fi system is fitted as standard. It boasts 40W x 4 power, RDS facility and a removable front panel for added security.

A Thatcham Category 1 remote-operated alarm manufactured by Cobra is fitted as standard.

Strong sales and branding prospects
Hyundai estimates that it will sell around 1,500 units of the F2 Evolution by the year end. The F2 Evolution will be sold only in the United Kingdom. The new Evolution's prospects are boosted by the involvement of Motor Sport Developments (MSD), the company that builds Hyundai's rally cars. Using its experience in the rallying world, MSD has applied technology directly from the F2 programme to create a very special, rally-inspired car. Internationally renowned designer Peter Stevens is another name that will boost the desirability of the F2 Evolution.

Coupe customers helped in the process of developing the final Evolution specification through a personalised direct marketing programme, ensuring that the car had the right mix of qualities that potential buyers are seeking.

Strong demand
Hyundai's market research indicates that there is very strong demand from existing Coupe owners. Already Hyundai dealers have around 150 orders for the car prior to launch. The majority of sales however are expected to be conquest sales from other marques, especially from company car user choosers.
The F2 Evolution is extremely competitively priced at £19,299 on the road, undercutting major rivals such as the Alfa Romeo GTV, Fiat Coupe, Ford Cougar and Honda Accord Coupe. Around 85 per cent of sales are expected to be manual transmission, the remaining 15 per cent being automatic.

Coupe has strong brand appeal
The Coupe F2 Evolution is an important car for Hyundai, in that it attracts attention to the brand from car users who would never normally have looked at buying a Hyundai car. The knock-on effect of the Coupe's popularity means greater numbers of drivers visiting Hyundai dealers, and company user choosers also being attracted to the Hyundai brand for the first time.

Brand acceptability leads to more awareness and in turn more sales. Since 1996 when the Coupe was first launched nearly 10,000 cars have been sold. In turn the Hyundai franchise has grown to 30,000 units per annum in that time.

Rally style appearance designed by Peter Stevens
As the F2 rally-winning Coupe Evolution II becomes more and more familiar to motorsport enthusiasts, the high status of the Hyundai Coupe generally is growing. Drivers will recognise the distinctive changes in the F2 Evolution as being directly inspired by the rally car. World famous car designer Peter Stevens is the man responsible for the major styling changes and who designed the aerodynamic modifications for the Hyundai rally car.

His brief for the road car was to create a distinctive new look that emulated the looks of the rally car. He is uniquely well qualified as the designer of numerous sports car icons, including the McLaren F1, Lotus Elan and revised Lotus Esprit.

Peter Stevens has designed a whole new front bumper/spoiler unit, rather than an add-on spoiler. It features a deeper profile with a sharper edge to cut cleanly through the air, reducing drag. The colour-coded glass fibre front spoiler incorporates standard fog lights in an oval shape that duplicates the profile of the headlamps.

The dramatic new rear wing, also styled by Peter Stevens, is taller than the wing found on other Hyundai Coupe models. It is very similar to the rally car's rear wing and integrates perfectly with the profile of the car. It features triple pylons and prominent 'ears' at either end that channel airflow carefully across the back of the car, increasing downforce and aiding stability.

The colour-coded rear wing also incorporates a high-level brake light, and the rear view of the car is further enhanced by a single wide-bore stainless steel oval exhaust tail-pipe.

The sporty five-spoke alloy wheels are similar to the rims fitted to the rally car. They are made in Germany by ATS and measure 16 x 7 inches. The Hyundai 'H' badge is embossed into one of the spokes and there are 'F2 Evolution' centre bosses and chrome valves and dust covers.

Two special colours are available for the Coupe F2 Evolution. Buyers can choose between Bright Silver metallic or Cobalt Blue mica, both of which are included in the standard price.

Clearly identifying the new model are 'F2 Evolution' badges on the front wings and rear panel. The overall effect is a strong enhancement of an already widely appreciated shape in a 1998 survey the Coupe was voted the 6th sexiest car on sale.

Technical Specification

Engine 2.0 SE 2.0 F2 Evolution
Type 4cyl 16V 4cyl 16V
Capacity (cc) 1975 1975
Bore/Stroke (mm) 82.0 x 93.5 82.0 x 93.5
Compression ratio 10.3:1 10.3:1
Max Power (bhp) 137 154
at rpm 6000 6250
Max Torque (ft lbs/Nm) 134 (182) 140 (190)
at rpm 4900 4900
Max engine speed (rpm) 6500 6500
Max speed (mph) (man/auto) 125/123 125/123
0-60mph (secs) (man/auto) 8.6/10.7 8.1/10.5
Fuel consumption (combined) (man/auto) 32.1/28.5 31.4/27.9
Wheels and Tyres
Wheels 6.0Jx15 7.0Jx16
Tyres 205/50 205/45
R15 R16
Ventilated discs
Ventilated discs
Price £17,029 £19,299
Insurance Group 12A 12A