More a destination than retail space, Hyundai’s Motorstudio redefines the automobile experience with a single material: steel. Rather than try to add design to a venue for a trend-driven industry, Suh Architects chose to speak about the material of its origins. From molten metal to plates of steel, to cars, pipes, and then back again to scrap, the building is an expression of Hyundai’s ‘Zero to zero’ initiative to recycle and produce its own steel.
The Motorstudio thus became a unique opportunity for Suh Architects to create not only the building’s architecture, interior and graphics, but also its entire program. From phosphate-coated plates to industrial pipes to LED panels to ‘ribbon’ display platforms to racecar prototypes, the Motorstudio’s main spaces reflect the diversity of Hyundai’s steel’s applications. The double-height lobby features an artist installation program exploring the relationship between the city and its cars and dwellers.
The auto-design library, R&D exhibits, and children’s playspaces occupy its upper three floors, inviting families and car-enthusiasts alike. Its upper floors feature a DIY customization program for its latest models that have out-sold all other retail stores nationwide. Nine custom-designed, specially-reinforced car-rotators ‘skewer’ full-scale cars to display the undercarriages and bodies of latest models; the building’s facade becomes an urban-scale display of cars as objects of desire and sustainability. Boldly situating itself across from BMW and Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai’s Motorstudio has thus begun a new conversation with its customers, rebranding itself through its unique architecture and programs