Hyundai Equus

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Not to be confused with the Equus Bass 770 muscle car.
Hyundai Equus
2011 Hyundai Equus -- 02-24-2011.jpg
AssemblyUlsan, South Korea
Kaliningrad, Russia (Avtotor, 2013-2016)[1]
Body and chassis
ClassFull-size luxury car (F)
Body style4-door sedan
PredecessorHyundai Dynasty
SuccessorGenesis G90[2][3][4]

The Hyundai Equus (Hangul현대 에쿠스; RRHyeondae Ekuseu) is a full-size luxury car produced by the South Korean manufacturer Hyundai since 1999.

In 2009, Hyundai released the second generation utilizing a rear-wheel drive platform and competing with the BMW 7 Series, Mercedes S-Class, Audi A8 and Lexus LS.[5] As of August 2014, the second generation is marketed in South Korea, Russia, China, United States, Canada, Central America, and South America — as well as in the Middle East under the Hyundai Centennial nameplate.

The name "equus" is the Latin word for "horse".

On November 4, 2015, Hyundai officially announced the Genesis brand will be spun off into Genesis Motors, the new luxury vehicle division for Hyundai.[6][7] The 2016 successor to the Hyundai Equus will be rebranded as Genesis G90[8] (EQ900 in Korea)[2] The Equus currently serves as the official state car of the Republic of Korea.

First generation (LZ/YJ; 1999–2009)[edit]

First generation (LZ/YJ)
20100801 hyundai equus 01.jpg
ManufacturerMitsubishi Motors Corporation
Hyundai Motor Company
Also called
AssemblyUlsan, South Korea
Body and chassis
LayoutFF layout
  • 3.0 L Sigma V6 (1999-2005)
  • 3.3 L Lambda V6 (2005-2009)
  • 3.5 L Sigma V6 (1999-2005)
  • 3.8 L Lambda V6 (2005-2009)
  • 4.5 L Mitsubishi 8A80 (GDI) V8
  • 4.5 L Mitsubishi 8A80 (MPI) V8
Transmission5-speed automatic
  • 2,840 mm (111.8 in)
  • (limo: 3,090 mm (121.7 in))
  • 1999–2003 : 5,065 mm (199.4 in)
  • (limo: 5,335 mm (210.0 in))
  • 2003–2009 : 5,120 mm (201.6 in)
  • (limo: 5,390 mm (212.2 in))
Width1,870 mm (73.6 in)
  • 1,480 mm (58.3 in)
  • (limo: 1,485 mm (58.5 in))
Hyundai Equus

In 1999, Hyundai Motors and Mitsubishi Motors presented their full-size sedan. Hyundai said that it was making a full-size sedan to compete with Mercedes-Benz S-Class and BMW 7 Series in the Korean market. In reality, it was competing against its domestic rival, SsangYong Chairman. Hyundai had great success with the Equus in Korea, but very few were exported to other countries. One was exported for the 2001 New York International Auto Show to gauge the reaction of U.S. consumers. Hyundai identified the car to the U.S. consumers as the Hyundai LZ450 luxury sedan.

The first generation was designed by Mitsubishi Motors, who had their own version called the Proudia. It was jointly manufactured by both companies.[9] The first-generation model was introduced in 1999 as a front-wheel-drive car measuring 5.1 metres (200.8 in) long and 1.9 metres (74.8 in) wide. A long-wheelbase limousine model was available exclusively for the Korean domestic market, and at ₩92,510,000 South Korean won for the 2008 model with a V8 and no options, was the most expensive model in the company's lineup. The first-generation Equus extended-length limousine was also mechanically related to the Mitsubishi Dignity limousine for the Japanese market. The first-generation Equus were sold in South Korea, China, and the Middle East. A very limited number, badged as the Centennial, were made available for some western European markets in the early and mid-2000s. At first, there were two engine types: a 3.5 Sigma V6 and 4.5 8A80 (Omega) V8 engine. After a few months, the 3.0 Sigma V6 engine type was added. Two versions were available: a sedan (3.0, 3.5 and 4.5) and a limousine (3.5 and 4.5). In Japan, under the name of Mitsubishi Dignity (limousine version) and Mitsubishi Proudia (sedan version), about 2,000 units were sold. Specifically, the 4.5 8A80 (Omega) V8 engine was a GDI (Gasoline Direct Injection) type engine, which was designed and developed by Mitsubishi Motors. This engine was optimized for premium unleaded gasoline fuel, but there was little opportunity to get this type of fuel in Korea at that time. So, most of these engines used normal unleaded gasoline fuel and then had significant performance issues, resulting in complaints from drivers. Finally, Hyundai Motors modified this engine from a GDI Type to a MPI (Multi Point Injection) type to solve the issue. It added curtain airbags in 2001 and active head restraints in 2002.

New Equus[edit]

In 2003, Hyundai presented their 'New Equus', changing the hood design and some of interior. A 7 inch screen for the rear seat, Xenon headlamps, front parking sensors, etc. were newly offered. Mitsubishi Motors ended the production of Mitsubishi Proudia and Mitsubishi Dignity, unlike Hyundai. It introduced seat ventilation cooling and heating, climate control with air purifier (2003), Alcantara leather seats (2007). From 2005, 3.0 and 3.5 Sigma V6 engine types were changed to 3.3 and 3.8 Lambda V6 engine types which were designed and developed by Hyundai Motors. But the automatic transmission was not changed. Hyundai officially ceased the production of 1st generation Equus in November 2009. A new bigger, rear-wheel drive Equus was launched in March 2009.[10]

Limousine model[edit]

1st gen limousine model

A limousine model was made for the Korean market. Equus Limousines have been used by famous company owners in Korea as well as foreign VIPs.

Second generation (VI; 2009–2016)[edit]

Second generation (VI)
2011 Hyundai Equus -- 12-29-2011.jpg
Also calledHyundai Centennial
Body and chassis
LayoutFR layout
  • 3.8 L Lambda V6 (GDI) (standard buyer)
  • 4.6 L Tau V8 (standard buyer)
  • 5.0 L Tau V8 (GDI) (Sedan, limousine)
Wheelbase3,045 mm (119.9 in) (Sedan)
3,345 mm (131.7 in) (Limousine)
Length5,160 mm (203.1 in) (Sedan)
5,460 mm (215.0 in) (Limousine)
Width1,900 mm (74.8 in)
Height1,495 mm (58.9 in)

Initial version[edit]

Hyundai Equus GLS (Chile)

The second generation Equus, codename "VI", was unveiled in Grand Hyatt Seoul.[12] Unlike the old Equus, the VI has a rear-wheel drive architecture, a longer wheelbase, and a different engine.[10] The VI is based on an all-new platform, that has been entirely developed by Hyundai Motor Corporation. Although the car has nothing in common with the previous Equus, the VI takes only the name from old Equus, because the name 'Equus' has prestige in Korea.

The Korean domestic market Equus comes as a 3.8L "Prime" and a 4.6L "Prestige" in South Korea. It is the most expensive model in the company's lineup. It launched in the People's Republic of China in August 2009. The Hyundai Equus was listed in the '10 exciting cars for 2010' from Forbes.[13]

US model was announced in 2009 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance,[14] and was unveiled in 2010 New York Auto Show.[15] Early US model includes the same 4.6L V8 engine as the Genesis except with 10 hp (7 kW) more than the current version. This puts the total engine output at 385 hp (287 kW) with 333 lb⋅ft (451 N⋅m).[16] The North American Equus features a badge attached on the hood as opposed to the hood ornament, the grille features a horizontal grid pattern like its Genesis sibling as opposed to the vertical one on international models, and an included iPad device with an Equus user's guide application pre-installed as opposed to a traditional owner's manual.[17]

It was the first Hyundai with an Electronically-controlled Air Suspension (EAS) and Continuous Damping Control (CDC). Also first Hyundai with Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) collision avoidance system that optimally manages Electronic stability control, the electronic parking brake, radar smart cruise control and the seatbelt tensioning system for optimal safety.

Equus Limousine[edit]

2010 Hyundai Equus Limousine
2010 Hyundai Equus Limousine

The long-wheelbase version Equus was unveiled in September 2009. It is 300 mm (11.8 in) longer than the sedan version. Engine choices include Lambda 3.8L and Tau 5.0L engines.[18][19] The limousine model has an exclusive horizontal cross-bar radiator grille, as well as features such as a power-driven footrest, rear-seat leg support and a massage system.[20]

Hyundai also developed an armoured vehicle based on the limousine, with an enlarged 5.5L version of the V8 engine.[21] On September 2009, Hyundai delivered three bulletproof limousine versions of the luxury sedan Equus to the South Korea Presidential Security Service to be used as the official state car. Hyundai designed this vehicle with a special alloy, with an automatic cooling system in case of fire as well as bulletproof windows.[22]

The first-built armoured limousine was donated to Blue House.[23] A modified Hyundai Equus was donated to Costa Rica and is currently used as the presidential car.

The limousine was available only in South Korea and Russia. The Russian version had the same price tag as the South Korean version.

RMR Signature Edition Equus[edit]

It is a concept vehicle customized by Rhys Millen Racing, based on Equus with 4.6 Tau engine. It included bolt-on RMR Signature Edition air intake and stainless exhaust, increased engine power by 30 hp, RMR Signature Edition embroidered headrests and floor mats, and ostrich hide leather seats with suede accents.

The vehicle was unveiled in 2010 SEMA show.[24]

DUB Edition Hyundai Equus[edit]

It is a version of 2011 Equus sedan built by Mummbles Marketing and DUB Magazine. It included Trex DUB Design mesh grille, DUB Design custom body kit, tinted windows and tail lights, and a custom two-tone, gloss black-and-matte charcoal body colour, DUB Edition custom suspension, 24-inch TIS modular style 10 wheels with Pirelli Pzero Nero Tires, custom trunk enclosure with Infinity Kappa audio (9 Infinity Kappa Series speakers, KAPPA ONE mono and KAPPA FOUR four-channel amplifiers), DUB Design custom leather and suede upholstery, DUB Design illuminated headliner and custom rear bucket seats.

The vehicle was unveiled in 2010 SEMA show.[25]

Body style[edit]

Model Sedan (VSxx0) Limousine (VLxx0)
Lambda 3.8 MPi 2009-2016 2009-2016
Tau 4.6 MPi (366PS) 2009-2016 N/A
Tau 4.6 MPi (390PS) 2010-2016 N/A
Tau 5.0 MPi N/A 2009-2016


Petrol engines
Model Years Type/code Power@rpm Torque@rpm
Lambda 3.8 MPi 2009-2011 3,778 cc (230.5 cu in) V6 (G6DA) 290 PS (213 kW; 286 hp)@6200 36.5 kg⋅m (358 N⋅m; 264 lbf⋅ft)@4500
Tau 4.6 MPi (366PS) 2009-2011 4,627 cc (282.4 cu in) V8 (G8BA) 366 PS (269 kW; 361 hp)@6500 44.8 kg⋅m (439 N⋅m; 324 lbf⋅ft)@3500
Tau 4.6 MPi (390PS) 2010-2011 4,627 cc (282.4 cu in) V8 (G8BA) 383 PS (282 kW; 378 hp)@6500
390 PS (287 kW; 385 hp)@6500 (Premium fuel)
44.8 kg⋅m (439 N⋅m; 324 lbf⋅ft)@3500
46.0 kg⋅m (451 N⋅m; 333 lbf⋅ft)@3500 (Premium fuel)
Tau 5.0 MPi 2009-2011 5,038 cc (307.4 cu in) V8 (G8BB) 400 PS (294 kW; 395 hp)@6400
(Premium fuel)
51.0 kg⋅m (500 N⋅m; 369 lbf⋅ft)@3500
(Premium fuel)

South Korean models include Lambda 3.8 MPi, Tau 4.6 MPi (366PS), Tau 5.0 MPi engines.

US models include only Tau 4.6 MPi for the 2011 model (390PS) engine. The Tau 5.0 GDi was from 2012 forward.


All models included ZF 6-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC manual control.

2012 model year update[edit]

2012 model vehicles include 8-speed automatic transmission, introduction of GDI engines.[26] It was also revealed that the Hyundai Equus will be receiving a 5.0L V8 with 429 hp (320 kW) and 376 lb⋅ft (510 N⋅m).[27] This engine will be an option for the Equus after January 2011. This engine will also be placed in the facelifted 2012 Hyundai Genesis.[27]

Korean models went on sale in 2012.[28]

EQUUS by HERMES (2013)[edit]

It is a limited (3 units) version of 2013 Hyundai Equus limousine built in collaboration with French fashion label Hermès.[29]

The vehicle was unveiled in 2013 Seoul Motor Show.[30]

Body style[edit]

Model Sedan (VSxx0) Limousine (VLxx0)
Lambda 3.8 GDi 2011- 2011-
Lambda 3.8 MPi 2011- 2011?-
Tau 4.6 MPi 2011- na
Tau 5.0 GDi (416PS) 2011- 2011-
Tau 5.0 GDi (435PS) 2011- 2011?-

US, Canadian models include only sedan (VS500).

South Korean models include sedan (VS380, VS500) and limousine (VL380, VL500).


Petrol engines
Model Years Type/code Power@rpm Torque@rpm
Lambda 3.8 MPi 2011-2013 3,778 cc (230.5 cu in) V6 (G6DA) 290 PS (213 kW; 286 hp)@6200 36.5 kg⋅m (358 N⋅m; 264 lbf⋅ft)@4500
Lambda 3.8 GDi 2011-2013 3,778 cc (230.5 cu in) V6 (G6DJ) 334 PS (246 kW; 329 hp)@6400 40.3 kg⋅m (395 N⋅m; 291 lbf⋅ft)@5100
Tau 4.6 MPi 2011-2013 4,627 cc (282.4 cu in) V8 (G8BA) 366 PS (269 kW; 361 hp)@6500 (Regular)
385 PS (283 kW; 380 hp)@6500 (Premium)
44.8 kg⋅m (439 N⋅m; 324 lbf⋅ft)@3500 (Regular)
46.0 kg⋅m (451 N⋅m; 333 lbf⋅ft)@5000 (Premium)
Tau 5.0 GDi (416PS) 2011-2013 5,038 cc (307.4 cu in) V8 (G8BE) 416 PS (306 kW; 410 hp)@6400 52.0 kg⋅m (510 N⋅m; 376 lbf⋅ft)@5000
Tau 5.0 GDi (435PS) 2011-2013 5,038 cc (307.4 cu in) V8 (G8BE) 430 PS (316 kW; 424 hp)@6400 (Regular)
435 PS (320 kW; 429 hp)@6400 (Premium)
52.0 kg⋅m (510 N⋅m; 376 lbf⋅ft)@5000

US, Canadian models include only Tau 5.0 GDi (435PS) engine.

South Korean models include Lambda 3.8 GDi, Tau 5.0 GDi (416PS) engines.


All models have an 8-speed automatic transmission.


In 2012-12-17, an armoured Equus Limousine was delivered to Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN) Ban Ki-moon at the UN Headquarters in New York, U.S.[31]

2014 model year update[edit]

Changes include new 19-inch, turbine-blade polished silver wheel design, new front bumper fascia and grille design, new side mirrors and tail lamp graphics, standard LED fog lamps, new Night Shadow Brown exterior color, completely redesigned instrumental panel and center stack, redesigned center console and shift lever design, revised steering wheel control layout with vehicle settings, new ivory leather interior colour, new genuine wood trim selections, redesigned rear seat center console controls, revised tuning for both enhanced ride comfort and handling, sport mode receives crisper damper tuning for improved body control, normal mode receives enhanced ride comfort, snow mode added to drive mode system, revised front suspension bushings, standard Assurance Connected Care & Blue Link, larger 7-inch TFT LCD cluster display (Signature), 12.3-inch fully digital TFT LCD cluster display (Ultimate), larger 9.2-inch upper center stack LCD display, climate control system offers three distinct cabin temperature zones, standard smart cruise control with stop/start (from 0 mph), proximity smart key with both key fob and card-key types, dual 9.2-inch rear seat entertainment monitors, power door closure, power lumbar for rear outboard seats, standard Assurance Connected Care (3-year complimentary services), standard Rear Cross-traffic Alert, standard Blind Spot Detection (BSD), heads-up display, vehicle multi-view camera system.

The vehicle was unveiled in 2013 New York Auto Show.[32]

US models went on sale in 2013 as 2014 model year vehicles. Early models included Tau 5.0 GDi.[33]


In 2013, a shipment of 61 2014 Hyundai Equus sedans carried by Korean freighter Morning Spruce destined for the United States was adrift for days after the ship had lost engine power in Pacific Ocean.[34]

In 2014-03-11, an Equus sedan was used in Chilean Government inauguration ceremony.[35]

Body style[edit]

Model Sedan (VSxx0) Limousine (VLxx0)
Lambda 3.8 GDi 2013- 2013-
Tau 5.0 GDi (416PS) 2013- 2013-
Tau 5.0 GDi (423PS) 2013?- na
Tau 5.0 GDi (430PS) 2013?- na
Tau 5.0 GDi (435PS) 2013- 2013?-

US, Canadian models include only sedan (VS500).

South Korean models include sedan (VS380, VS500) and limousine (VL380, VL500).


Petrol engines
Model Years Type/code Power@rpm Torque@rpm
Lambda 3.8 GDi 2014-2016 3,778 cc (230.5 cu in) V6 (G6DJ) 334 PS (246 kW; 329 hp)@6400 40.3 kg⋅m (395 N⋅m; 291 lbf⋅ft)@5100
Tau 5.0 GDi (416PS) 2014-2016 5,038 cc (307.4 cu in) V8 (G8BE) 416 PS (306 kW; 410 hp)@6400 (Premium) 52.0 kg⋅m (510 N⋅m; 376 lbf⋅ft)@5000
Tau 5.0 GDi (423PS) 2014-2016 5,038 cc (307.4 cu in) V8 (G8BE?) 423 PS (311 kW; 417 hp)@6400 50.5 kg⋅m (495 N⋅m; 365 lbf⋅ft)@5000
Tau 5.0 GDi (430PS) 2014-2016 5,038 cc (307.4 cu in) V8 (G8BE) 430 PS (316 kW; 424 hp)@6400 52.0 kg⋅m (510 N⋅m; 376 lbf⋅ft)@5000
Tau 5.0 GDi (435PS) 2014-2016 5,038 cc (307.4 cu in) V8 (G8BE) 430 PS (316 kW; 424 hp)@6400 (Regular)
435 PS (320 kW; 429 hp)@6400 (Premium)
52.0 kg⋅m (510 N⋅m; 376 lbf⋅ft)@5000

US, Canadian models include only Tau 5.0 GDi (435PS) engine.

South Korean models include Lambda 3.8 GDi, Tau 5.0 GDi (416PS) engines.


All models have an 8-speed automatic transmission.


2016 is the last model year for both the Hyundai Equus and Genesis due to the beginning of the new Genesis division being added for the Hyundai Motor Company and its models the Genesis G80 and G90 which will replace the Hyundai Genesis and Equus.


In 2017, the Equus was replaced by the Genesis G90 with a brand new platform under the Genesis brand, under the G90 and EQ900 names respectively.


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  2. ^ a b "Hyundai og title". Archived from the original on 2015-12-22.
  3. ^ "2016 제네시스 브랜드 스토리, 디자인, 스펙 l 제네시스".
  4. ^ "제네시스 EQ900, 고급 중형세단의 새로운 시작 l 제네시스".
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  13. ^ 10 exciting cars for 2010, CBC News, 29 September 2009.
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  16. ^ Ramsey, Jonathon. "Hyundai reveals 2011 Equus details, range topper to come in two U.S. flavors".
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  18. ^ "News - Hyundai Motor Company".
  19. ^ Abuelsamid, Sam. "Hyundai develops stretched Equus limo for home market [w/VIDEO]".
  20. ^ Hyundai Launches Limousine Edition of Its Luxury Flagship, EQUUS Thai Automaxx, 29 September 2009.
  21. ^ 이명박 대통령, 에쿠스 리무진 방탄차 탄다(in Korean)2009.09.28. Maeil Economy
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  23. ^ Joseph, Noah. "Trio of bulletproof presidential Hyundai Equus limos are first-ever armored stretches built in Korea".
  24. ^ Korzeniewski, Jeremy. "Hyundai teases Rhys Millen Racing's Equus for SEMA".
  25. ^ Glucker, Jeff. "Hyundai Equus Mummbles and Dubs its way to SEMA".
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  27. ^ a b 2011 Hyundai Equus, Genesis To Get 429-HP 5.0-Liter Tau V-8, MotorAuthority, 22 June 2010.
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  29. ^ "2013 Hyundai Equus Hermes Edition".
  30. ^ "Hyundai Rolls Out Luxurious Equus By Hermès Study".
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  32. ^ Korzeniewski, Jeremy. "2014 Hyundai Equus gallops into New York with first major refresh".
  33. ^ Ewing, Steven J. "2014 Hyundai Equus priced from $61,000*".
  34. ^ Paukert, Chris. "First 2014 Hyundai Equus shipment adrift in Pacific Ocean [UPDATE]".
  35. ^ "News - Hyundai Motor Company".

External links[edit]