Late bloomer: Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

Does the Korean MPV have enough nectar to lure buyers?

Late bloomer: Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

It was back in late 2022 when Hyundai Motor Philippines introduced the Stargazer in the country, which marked the distributor’s entry in the hotly-contested multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) segment.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • How much is the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium?

    The Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium can be had for P1.288 million.
  • What is unique to the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium compared to other MPV models in the market?

    The Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium veered away from the usual crossover-ish look that many MPV wears.
  • The nameplate was introduced to the at a time when Japanese marques have start to have a good foothold of the local market.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    However, when it was released, the small family hauler from the Korean automotive brand has become one of the popular options in the market, making it one of the brand’s stars in terms of local sales performance.

    Is the Hyundai Stargazer already considered a late bloomer in the segment or can it still attract more buyers to increase its share in the local MPV pie? Here’s what Zigwheels Philippines has learned upon checking out the GLS Premium variant.

    Dimension

    Smaller than Hyundai’s people carrier that is the Staria, the Stargazer GLS Premium is 4,460 millimeters (mm) long, 1,780 mm wide, and 1,695 mm tall with a 2,780-mm wheelbase. Such numbers guarantee enough leg- and headroom even for those a little over six foot in height.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    Also, the vehicle offers a 185-mm ground clearance, which means it has enough height to get through unusually-high bumps on the road.

    Its dimensions do not differ much from other contenders, which means it has a strong chance in its category.

    Exterior

    While leaders in the country’s MPV race seems to have a distinct look, Hyundai decided to veer away from the “usual” with the Stargazer GLS Premium by sporting different aesthetics.

    Unlike the others that have a crossover-ish appearance, the Hyundai Stargazer has an aerodynamic layout, thanks to its one-curve silhouette design. 

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    Resembling to bigger sibling that is the Hyundai Staria, the Stargazer’s fore has a flush-type radiator grille bordered by two multi-face reflector LED headlights and an LED strip that connects the daytime running lights.

    To its side are bold body lines with matching body-colored wheel arches, side mirrors with turn-signal repeaters that further boosts its sleekness. Chromed portions of the vehicle’s side profile include the door handles and 16-inch two-tone wheels.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    Some of the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium’s distinct features at the rear are the signature H-shape rear illumination system as seen with the (connected taillamp design), high-mount stop lamp placed within the spoiler and a skid plate.

    The vehicle’s overall outline veered away from the normal look, which further promotes a sense of distinctiveness against the segment heavyweights.

    Interior

    Just like exterior, the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium’s cabin has ample features enough to create a buzz in the category.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    Welcoming occupants are the sufficient amount of black leatherette appointments on the seats, door trimmings, shift boot, armrest console, and multi-function steering wheel that blends well with the black plastic and brushed silver portions around the vehicle.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    The middle row offers ample leg- and headroom and making it more family-friendly is the foldable table at the back of the front passenger sturdy enough to hold light meals and drink.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

     Further, both the middle and rear seats can be folded to haul more luggage: the second row can do 60:40 while the third row is capable of doing 50:50.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    Powertrain

    The Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium is powered by a 1.5-liter Smartstream double overhead cam gasoline engine with Dual Continuous Variable Valve Timing technology that, on paper, can do nearly 114 horsepower and a little over 144 Newton-meters of torque.

    The mill is mated to an intelligent variable transmission — the same gearbox found in the Creta.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    While oomph and speed are basically the same churn as with its competitors, the MPV showed good numbers in terms of fuel efficiency.

    Guaranteeing the vehicle’s stopping power, on the other hand, are the 15-inch front disc brakes and nine-inch drums at the rear.  

    After covering almost 600 kilometers of highways as well as sharp climbs and downhills to Baguio and Benguet (carrying a relatively sufficient load of passenger and cargo) and back, the vehicle was able to clock in 14.5 kilometers per liter.

    Other tech, comfort features

    Convenience and comfort features are a-plenty on the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium.

    A 4.2-inch digital cluster gauge is slapped on the driver side while seated at the center of the dashboard is an eight-inch touchscreen display that has Bluetooth, Android Auto, and Apple Carplay connectivity. The system is paired with a six-speaker set-up.

    The Korean automaker took much effort in assuring storage space with the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium as it comes with numerous compartments such as glove box; the thin, covered portion between the air-conditioning vents, large deck above just beside the infotainment system; and the long open area that spans two thirds of the whole dashboard. The said portions form part of the 31 nooks and crannies that can be found all over the vehicle.

    Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium

    Mobile devices of those inside the vehicle will never run out of juice even during long drives as three USB ports and a wireless charging dock are made available to them.

    It also reassuring to know that the Stargazer GLS Premium has been installed with the Hyundai Smartsense Technology that has a multitude of safety features namely forward collision avoidance assist (that can detect both cars and pedestrians), blind spot collision avoidance assist, lane keep rear occupant alert, high-beam assist, rear cross collision avoidance assist, driver attention warning, safe exit warning, reverse parking distance warning, and lane follow assist.

    Pricing, package

    At the time of posting, the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium is being retailed for P1.288 million — a tad higher compared to its Japanese counterpart that currently leads the segment. It is packaged with a five-year or 200,000-kilometer (whichever comes first) warranty.

    Pros/Cons

    Amid the fact that it was offered to the country at a time when  MPV models have already established its by enticing customers with their respective sweet nectars, the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium is still not far behind and can still create a buzz of its own. 

    Fit for those who want to express their individuality without disregarding practicality, the vehicle dishes out a distinct look as well as the space and flexibility that will surely gather the attention of buyers eyeing for a budget seven-seater.

    While more expensive when pitted against its rivals, the Hyundai Stargazer GLS Premium is packed with premium features — a price that most owners are willing to pay to have a first-class experience.  

    Photos from Ruben Manahan IV

    Also read:

    How Hyundai Stargazer ensures safe driving even after long days at work

    Mighty MPVs: Hyundai Stargazer vs. Toyota Avanza vs. Mitsubishi Xpander

    First look: 4 ways the Hyundai Stargazer could win the space race

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    Seating 7
    8
    6
    8
    2
    Power Steering Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Air Conditioner Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Rear A/C Vents Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    No
    Adjustable Seats Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Foldable Rear Seat Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    No
    Headlamp Type Halogen
    Halogen
    Halogen
    Halogen
    Halogen
    Anti-Lock Braking System Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Driver Airbag Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    Yes
    -
    Parking Sensors No
    No
    Yes
    Yes
    No
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