Hyundai Tiburon is a compact coupe manufactured by Hyundai Motor Company. Apart from Tiburon, this compact coupe also known as Hyundai Coupe. It was first produced in the year 1996 and produced till today. The word Tiburon means “shark” in Spanish, which really suits the appearance of this compact coupe. For market in the North American, Australian, New Zealand, South African and Austrian, you would not find Hyundai Coupe as it is known as Hyundai Tiburon. As for other world markets, it is known as Hyundai Coupe.
This model has been manufactured in two generation over the years it is produced. The first generation is known as RD, while the second generation is known as GK. Over its lifespan, these generations have been subject to periodic facelifts. These facelifts is a must as Hyundai Motor Company attempted to keep their pace in the market race with other models and also to improve various safety features. Not to forget, the exterior and interior styling also undergo a mixture of changes in order to attract more buyers. The first generation of Hyundai Tiburon, the RD Tiburon was produced in the time range of five years, starting from 1996 and ends in 2001. Soon, it was replaced by the second generation, GK Tiburon, from 2002 till up to date.
First generation, RD Tiburon began production in late 1996. It was available in 1.8L engine in the United States, and available in a few foreign markets with engine choices of either 1.6L or 1.8L. However, in 1998, Tiburon lost its 1.8L engine as Hyundai Motor Company decided to replace the weaker engine with a 2.0L engine for better performance. For safety features, RD Tiburon was equipped with Antilock Breaking System (ABS) and two airbags.
The previous generation of Tiburon expired after 2002. With less revising done with the previous generation, Hyundai takes Tiburon to another stage by launching a revised Tiburon in 2002 for the 2003 model year. The revised Tiburon saw improvement in the styling, larger dimensions, and optional V6 engine for those who loves the powerful engine. As the years passed by, Hyundai made several minor tweaks for GK Tiburon which give it more sporty look, for example in 2004, GK Tiburon received high spoiler, 17 inches wheels, and even sport cloth upholstery.
During the year 2005-2006, Hyundai once again conducted minor tweaks to GK Tiburon. This time, the vehicle was incorporated with blackened headlights. Redesigned rear tail lights, sportier look front air dam and a different range of allow wheel design to add more options for buyers to choose. During this time, the GK model is known as GK F/L. In the following year, a more comprehensive facelift was launched. This time, it is known as GK F/L2. With thinner headlights and angled more aggressively, added with “gill fins”, it was one of the affordable cars in the market with attractive appearance. Although Hyundai have not come with latest version of Tiburon since 2008, and speculation that Genesis Coupe is replacing Tiburon, Hyundai has readied to launch a new model of Tiburon with a 1.6L/2.0L turbocharged engine soon.