The Hyundai Trajet (tra-jay) was introduced from Hyundai Motors in 1999. The name Trajet comes from a French word that means “travel from one point to another”, and that is indeed what the Trajet was made for. The large people mover is perfect for transporting families and other large groups from point A to point B in style and comfort. Made in South Korea, the five-door multi-purpose vehicle boasts a variety of engine options, great standard kit, and a range of seating configurations to fit any family.
The Trajet was first launched in 1999 as a successor to the popular and long-produced Hyundai Galloper/Santomo, which in Australia was marketed under the Mitsubishi marque as the Mitsubishi Nimbus. In Australia, the Trajet did not go on sale until the year 2000. In 2008, the Trajet was phased out of production in favour of the Hyundai’s new people mover, the iMax, which continues to be sold today and was named one of “Australia’s Best Cars” in the people mover category.
The Trajet was built for convenience and comfort. The full three rows of seats allowed for a variety of different configurations to suit the needs of drivers. Easily removable seating made it simple to add interior cabin space and to transport large items or pieces of luggage. In an ingenious move by Hyundai, they made the front seats fully rotatable. When the car is stationary, the front two seats can be rotated a full 180 degrees in order to face the back seats. In this way, the car can serve as an alternate space for impromptu meetings or meals. What’s more, the second row of seats can actually be transformed into tables, allowing for further customizability and utility. When all the seats are in their natural positions, the five-door Trajet can comfortably seat seven people.
With an elegant exterior design and a spacious interior, the Trajet was a popular choice for a people mover. With a smooth ride that made the Trajet feel more like a sedan, the easy-to-drive Trajet also featured great handling and road grip in addition to substantial manoeuvrability (especially for such a large vehicle). Front and rear anti-roll bars and various standard safety features made the Trajet perfect to protect the entire family. Trajets are plentiful on the used car market and can be found inexpensively if you take the time to look.
The biggest seller in Australia was the 2.7-litre model. This version of the Trajet featured a 2.7-litre quad cam 24-valve V6 engine, which boasted an output of 131kW at 6000rpm and an impressive 245Nm of torque at 4000rpm.
The Trajet was offered in several trims both abroad and in Australia. In the UK, the series was launched with the GSI models that had a choice of diesel, petrol, or LPG power. These original models featured a 2.0-litre V4 engine with an output of 99kW and a fuel efficiency of 9.3 L/100km. With a revamp, and the launch of a new model, all Trajets were upgraded to a 2.0-litre V4 CVVT engine that boosted the output to 104kW and improved the fuel consumption to 8.7L/100 km. These vehicles may be available in Australia via the auto import grey market.
The standard Trajet came with a notable array of equipment and features designed to make the driver feel safe and comfortable. Driver, passenger, and side airbags came standard on all versions, as well as ABS with EBD, front and rear climate control, electric windows, double folding seats, and power steering. The three trims available in Australia (FX, GL, and GLS) came with various additional options for the discerning driver. These included a DVD player, reversing sensors, satellite navigation, and privacy glass.
The Trajet’s main competition came from the Kia Carnival and the Toyota Tarago, both of which are currently sold on the Australian market. In fact, the Carnival has been the best-selling people mover in Australia since 2007. During the same time as the production of the Trajet, the Carnival featured a 2.5-litre V6 engine that produced 132kW. Alternatively, the Tarago featured a 2.4L V4 petrol engine with an output of roughly 118kW and 220Nm of torque. Overall, the Trajet fared well against its competitors in the people mover class.