Meh Car Monday: The Hyundai Veracruz, Which You Forgot Existed Until Just Now

I think it can actually cause you some brain damage if you spend too long trying to picture a Hyundai Veracruz. The primate brain simply isn’t capable of performing such an act, but it almost can, so the brain’s vision and car-identification centers can overwork themselves to such a degree that they can cause a stroke or a full-on cranial explosion. I’ve seen it happen on the internet. So, for the love of pickles, do not try to picture a Hyundai Veracruz without using the photographic assets included on this page. Please. I don’t need the guilt. I already have enough.


Hyundai sold the Veracruz in America from 2007 to 2012, but chances are very good you had no idea about that because, like any fully functioning human, you have never actually thought about a Hyundai Veracruz, ever, at all.

The Veracruz was Hyundai’s mid-sized SUV or crossover thing that looked, generally, like pretty much any other SUV or crossover thing. Its most distinctive feature is probably its grille and badge arrangement, which mounted the badge on a low, central protuberance into the grille area, instead of just floating the badge in the center of the grille as most cars would.

That’s likely the most interesting and novel thing about the Veracruz.

The Veracruz came with Hyundai’s 3.0-liter V6 making an entirely on-par 240 horsepower, bolted to a six-speed auto that would either drive the front wheels or all the wheels. This was all, you know, just...fine.


Like I seem to repeat every Meh Car Monday, being Meh isn’t being bad, as such; it’s just being unremarkable. The Veracruz was a decent enough choice if you were seeking a luxury-ish SUV back in 2010 or so, it’s just that it’s not very likely you’d remember what you drove 15 seconds after walking away from it in a mall parking lot, where it’d be surrounded by a sea of other silver crossovers that looked and drove and worked, essentially, just like it.


Hyundai’s advertising for the Veracruz was pretty generic as well, because, really, what choice did they have?

Hm, yes, yes. Powerful style, stylish power, sure, whatever. That opening line about “demands the world’s attention” I guess is sort of accurate, because the only way this thing is going to get attention is through direct and foreceful demands, since no one would possibly and willingly give their attention to a silverly, luxury void like the Veracruz.


You know what? I just realized that for someone named Vera Cruz, this car might have some actual interest. So this Meh Car Monday comes with a caveat: if your name is Vera Cruz, this is not a meh car at all, because it’s a car named after you, Vera.

Hyundai even used the anonymity of the car as an advertising hook, showing that they can make a car as bland and forgettable as anyone, even Lexus:

See? Why bother paying more for some boring-ass comfortable SUV when even people who own these boring-ass SUVs can’t tell their boring-ass SUVs apart? You gotta admit, they make a good point.


Over in Korea, they seemed to play up the Veracruz’ luxury traits, as you can see here:

Look at that! They even call it an “LUV” which I’m guessing is less about the concept of the adorable and erotic bond between two stuffed bears (sometimes spelled “wuv”) and more about Luxury Utility Vehicle, or something like that. I mean, the guy writes with a fountain pen and is delivering an oversized stuffed bear and flowers to his Special Lady Friend who lounges in an evening dress, playing a grand piano. That’s some serious LUV right there.


So, sure, it’s probably luxurious enough, and if you’re looking at a used Lexus RX300 or whatever you may as well save your money and get the Veracruz because, come on, nobody will know or care. Ever.

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About the author

Jason Torchinsky

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus • Not-so-running: 1973 Reliant Scimitar, 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!)