By on November 8, 2018

Image: Hyundai

It was generally believed that Hyundai didn’t just wake up one morning and run off to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to secure rights to the Palisade model name for no good reason. The trademark filing came up last April, leading observers to rightfully believe that this large, imposing moniker was set aside for use on a large, imposing vehicle — such as the replacement for the current Santa Fe XL, which Hyundai assured us would appear with a standalone name. No more of this “Santa Fe/Santa Fe Sport” crap.

Sure enough, Palisade it is, but the Korean automaker, long known for value-packed automobiles, didn’t throw a dart at a map of the continental U.S. and land on a small town in Colorado. No, no — Hyundai’s all about the coastal life now. Gwyneth Paltrow and Elon Musk are coming over for tennis.

After seeing the brand’s success in naming utility vehicles after places in the American Southwest, we naturally assumed the Palisade name referred to the small town in Mesa County, Colorado, nestled beneath grand cliffs on the banks of the river which gives the state its name. God, you can just feel the manliness pulsing through your veins, the tumbleweeds lolling dustily through the fields, propelled by surging winds flowing over the continental divide. It’s enough to make you want to pitch a tent… and build a campfire.

Well, we were a little off. Hyundai’s trying something a bit different with this name, revealing Thursday that the upcoming three-row crossover bears a moniker that “might naturally be associated by many with the Pacific Palisades, an affluent and beautiful neighborhood in Southern California.”

You’ve changed since you left the neighborhood, Hyundai.

While I suppose you can’t get more southwest than SoCal, it’s still a departure. Trading pack mules for Prada and pumps, Hyundai claims the vehicle will go on sale next summer as a 2020 model, tempting nervous parents with its “strong inherent imagery of safety and security.” Big and bold, this thing’s supposed to be. Past spy photos of the bundled-up model prancing through the snow revealed a burly, fairly square-rigged vehicle that hopefully won’t disappoint with its facial features (looking at you, Kia Telluride). We should note that the Telluride debuted in mighty tony environs, too — New York’s Fashion Week. Huh.

Earlier this year, a concept vehicle unveiled in South Korea — the HDC-2 Grandmaster — pretty much spelled out the production model’s design direction.

Our first real glimpse will come at the L.A. Auto Show on November 28th, where Hyundai plans to wow shrimp-seeking crowds with its new eight-passenger flagship. The aura of well-bred refinement (or at least “new money but knows how to handle it”) positively oozes from Hyundai’s media release, which shows us nothing of the vehicle except the Palisade name splashed across the liftgate, plus some awesome coastal properties with nary a vehicle to be seen. Nevertheless, expect this absolutely critical vehicle to “offer dignity with style in an understated theme that demonstrates clear differentiation worthy of a flagship SUV.”

You’d think the Cullinan had reason to worry.

[Images: Hyundai, Brian Williams/Spiedbilde]

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14 Comments on “Prepare for Palisade: Hyundai Reveals a Not-so-surprising Name for Its Big Boy...”

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I see the class envy at this site is no longer exclusive to the Tesla brand, but now even Hyundai (how dare they).

    Nothing in this article about the vehicle – nothing. Just eight sarcastic paragraphs about the vehicle’s *name*.

    You could at least copy-paste something of value to the reader, like some estimated vehicle specs, pricing, competitor lineup, etc – you know, actual journalism.

    • 0 avatar

      Yeah, since Hyundai released only the name and one tiny teaser image, how DARE they talk about the name.

      Instead, they should have made wild guesses and assumptions (based on absolutely *nothing*) about specs, pricing, etc- that’s actual journalism.

      Um, itll be $12,000, seat 14, have 590 hp V-16 and get 47 mpg with its 130 speed transmission. Look at me, I’m a regular Tom Brokaw.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        Wrong. Others reported actual information back in July:

        That’s what journalism looks like, with a simple question for the readers at the end of the article.

  • avatar
    Stanley Steamer

    Green! I miss that color on cars.

  • avatar

    Oh, please…

    “A palisade—sometimes called a stakewall or a paling—is typically a fence or wall made from wooden stakes or tree trunks and used as a defensive structure or enclosure.”- Wikipedia

    It’s not a place it’s a thing

  • avatar

    “We should note that the Telluride debuted in mighty tony environs, too — New York’s Fashion Week. Huh.”

    It should perhaps be noted that Palisade could also refer to the mighty cliffs that sit across the Hudson River from Manhattan and Yonkers. These are a bit rugged and could be seen as exciting and adventurous, while still conveying an urban sophistication and prosperity.

    It should perhaps also be noted that the Palisades bluffs overlooked the spot where Hamilton and Burr had their famous duel. And Hamilton is still very hot since Lin-Manuel and his crew released their magnum opus a few years back.

    The Palisades also carry a certain air of mystery as the location of numerous super-villain lairs in comic books, especially in the 1960s. Back before GPS and satellite imagery were spoiling our unknown frontier fun, the Palisades were the only semi-plausible, semi-secluded hideout within striking distance of downtown Manhattan. (If you don’t count the rivers or the sewers.)

    To me, these are all plausible connotations for branding an SUV. So it is interesting that Hyundai has chosen to plant the seed of a Coastal Living brand. Maybe they meant to introduce it next April at the New York auto show, but decided to move it up 5 months? Check to see if their West Coast promotional materials have typos, indicating they were cobbled together at the last minute! :)

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    There was also the famed Palisades Amusement Park located just over the George Washington Bridge.
    It closed in 1971 and was redeveloped into hi rises that overlook the Hudson River and the Palisades.
    The jingle was a staple of commercials on Top 40 radio in the NYC metro area.

    Palisades has the rides
    Palisades has the fun
    Come on over
    Shows and dancing are free
    So’s the parking, so gee,
    Come on over
    Palisades coast to coast
    Where a dime buys the most
    Palisades Amusement Park
    Swings all day and after dark
    Ride the coaster
    Get cool in the waves of the pool
    You’ll have fun
    So Come on over.

    • 0 avatar

      Must not forget Freddie Cannon’s “Palisades Park” from the 60s

      “You’ll never know how great a kiss can feel
      When you stop at the top of a ferris wheel
      When I fell in love down at Palisades Park”

    • 0 avatar

      In case you guys are familiar with New Jersey, Palisades Park, the town in eastern Bergen County – next to Fort Lee – is probably a majority Korean town. That whole section of Bergen County is an enormous Korean enclave, with US headquarters for LG and Samsung in close proximity.

  • avatar

    I see a car salesman with white shoes and big fat SUV. Walk away.

  • avatar

    In case you guys are not familiar with New Jersey, the Palisades are the cliffs on the NJ side of the Hudson River. Palisades Park, the town in eastern Bergen County – next to Fort Lee – is by now a majority Korean town. That whole section of Bergen County is an enormous Korean enclave, with US headquarters for LG and Samsung in close proximity.

  • avatar

    Pacific palisades > Hudson/ NJ palisades. Closer to Korea too, and SoCal is extra double Asian car. If Chevy can use Malibu, Hyundai can use Palisade.

    Kinda surprised the name hasn’t been used already.

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