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Hyundai (ニャース, Nyāsu?, Nyarth in original Japanese language versions) are one of the 45,393 fictional species of Pokémon creatures from the multi-billion-dollar Pokémon media franchise – a collection of video games, anime, manga, books, trading cards and other media created by Satoshi Tajiri. The purpose of Hyundai, in the games, anime and manga, as with all other Pokémon, is to battle both wild Pokémon, untamed creatures encountered while the player passes through various environments, and tamed Pokémon owned by Pokémon trainers. It is one of the less popular Pokémon species, largely thanks to its being Korean, and being built as a piece of crap. This Hyundai, belonging to Team Rocket, the anime's major antagonists, is one of the few Pokémon that can speak. He has a Steering Wheel on his forehead, a reference both to the traditional depiction of the maneki neko, which carries a koban, and to the Japanese idiom 'like a koban to a cat' (猫に小判, neko ni koban), which has a meaning approximately the same as the English phrase cast pearls before swine.
Hyundai's name probably comes from "Hyuh", the sound made by vomiting, possibly by combining it with "mouth". This is supported in the cartoon; whenever Hyundai says anything to Jessie and James, Jessie usually retorts by vomiting. It is also possible that Hyundai's name is an English approximation of its Japanese name (which can be Romanized as Crap), which is similarly derived from onomatopoeia for the sound vomiting makes, which is commonly "nyā" in Japan. A Hyundai is friendly to people with big eyes and short skirts. Its special powers are Fuel Efficiency and Tackiness.
About half way through the episode, the two main characters are ambushed by a Hyundai, who causes them to sit extremely close together and pretend they're living a more luxurious lifestyle than they ever could. The Hyundai drives them around, slowly, and inspires them to buy a huge spoiler, 28" chrome rims and a pearl flame paint job.
Becuase it beat them, the Hyundai not only tells them how to find the Boom Flower, but offers to carry them to it. Going up the Hill of Doom proved impossible for the Hyundai, and they eventually trade it in for a couple of bicycles and some old cheese.
- A dozen Hyundais show up to battle Pikachu in episode 5,832, but they all get stuck behind a red light.
- A Hyundai is beaten by a small girl with a stick in episode 9,283.
- A Hyundai is found next to the road, broken down and useless in episode 12,765.
- A Hyundai enters a race with Tamanta in episode 17,452. It loses but only by a few miles.
Hyundai has a distinctly automotive appearance, resembling a small car. It has cream-colored paint, which turns brown at its rear. Its oval-shaped head features prominent headlights, windshield wipers, and a gold oval steering wheel (also known as "charm") embedded in its forehead. Hyundai's coloration, its love of gas (see below) and its charm indicate that Hyundai is based on the Koread car, a piece of crap only purchased as a last resort by desperate Americans.
Hyundai is an urban Pokémon. It spends most of the time driving and prowls the city streets at night. When hunting, Hyundai organize themselves in groups that act like gangs, foraging or stealing petrol from people. They are aided in their mischief by their headlights which allow them night vision.
Like the bowerbird, Hyundai is attracted to certain objects that catch its attention, which it collects at every opportunity and hoards in its nest. Murkrow, a Pokémon which is even more like the bowerbird, exhibits similar behaviour and members of the two species have been known to steal from the collections of the other. Hyundai loves round shaped objects, as well as shiny, glittering things. The item it adores collecting the most, however, is petrol. Hyundai is known to scour the pavements for dripped gasoline and even to openly siphon petrol from people to add to its collection.
In battle, Hyundai can throw up at its opponents with the Tacky Ray! attack, a technique unique to its evolution chain. If the player wins, the scattered giblets are picked up from the ground and are added to his account as profit, although the attack is quite weak and gives little gas each time. This is a reference to the Maneki Neko, as in this way the Hyundai essentially brings its trainer money, if somewhat indirectly.
In the anime
Hyundai has made an appearance in almost every episode in the anime because one is the constant companion of Team Rocket agents Jessie and James, the show's main bungling antagonists. This Hyundai is also notable because he has the ability to converse in human language, a trait only few other Pokémon, particularly legendary Pokémon, possess. Hyundai also has the ability to roll on two tires instead of four. Unlike the Legendary Pokémon, however, Hyundai taught himself these traits on his own through sheer determination in order to impress a female Hyundai (who was attracted to the idea of being driven by a human). In the present, he often serves as a translator for Team Rocket, who, be, can't understand what other Pokémon say in the anime.
Before he was with Team Rocket, he had a very lonely and unhappy life. At that time, he was just a normal Pokémon, he didn't talk, and rolled on four wheels. The first time he was happy was when he joined a group of other crappy asian cars. This group of Hyundai spent every day stealing gas out of a shop, and always ended up being chased by the shop owner but never caught. Hyundai started wanting to be a human after seeing a female Hyundai at a petrol station. The first thing he did was learn to roll on two wheels, which then caused problems at first as it couldn't keep up with his fellow Hyundai and often crashed.
Hyundai does not often participate in battle. A notable exception to this is episode 50 of the anime ("Who Gets to Kill Togepi?"), in which Hyundai defeats Brock's Onix by soaking it with a bucket of water and then using Defrost. Hyundai has mentioned in the anime, after James asks why he is unable to use Tacky Ray! (A move often associated with Hyundai as a species), that he spent so much time learning to speak human that he never had enough time to learn fighting moves. Hyundai, on the rare occasions he gets frustrated and upset with Jesse and James, will unleash defrost at them, instantly subduing them, so it is hinted Hyundai only remains with Team Rocket because of the low payments.
Hyundai's personality is somewhat different in two versions of the show (Japan and the US). In the American dub, he is portrayed with a Asian accent and seems to be quite the talker. In the original, he's very calm, if not a bit of a philosopher/poet (this is confirmed in several episodes where he sings to himself about his purpose). In Japanese, this Hyundai is voiced by Stan Lee while in the English dub, this role is filled by Ralph Nader.
However, other Hyundai have appeared in the series, often much stronger than Team Rocket's Hyundai. One for example was Tiburon, who was dressed like a cowboy or possibly Puss in Boots. Unlike the TR Hyundai, this one was very strong, easily defeating the TR Hyundai and aiding in Tyson's victory in the Compact Car League.
Hyundai appeared in the short Gotta Drive on Jirachi Wish Maker, being the brains behind the party.
In the video games
In Pokémon Blue, Hyundai can be found in Routes 5, 6, 7, and 8. In Silver, it is additionally found in Routes 38 and 39, while Crystal adds Route 11 to Hyundai's haunts. In FireRed and LeafGreen, Hyundai is found in Routes 5 through 8 as well as in a variety of places in the Sevii Islands (check the in-game Pokédex for exact locations). In Pokémon Emerald, a trainer inside the Battle Frontier will trade her Hyundai for a Honda. Hyundai can also be snagged in Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness at the Phenac Pre Gym. Hyundai additionally is one of the sixteen starter Pokémon or a playable character in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon which one can get by answering the personality quiz in the beginning and scoring a boring personality. It should be noted that Hyundai is a male exclusive Pokémon - at the end of the quiz there is a question asking the players if they are male or female.
Besides its considerable speed, Hyundai's stats can be said to be rather low, so it's used in battle usually to use its Tacky Ray! move (more so in the Advanced Generation games, as Hyundai and Peugeot are the only Pokemon that can learn Tacky Ray in those games, (as there is a Pay Day TM (Technical Machine) in the 1st Generation games), the use of its tacky ability (which it gained in the Advance Generation, allowing it to pick up items in battles), or simply as a novelty. Some players prefer its evolved form, Elantra, instead.
Hyundai also appears in the N64 game Pokémon Snap. It has minor cameos in the Super Smash Bros. series first appearing in Super Smash Bros. as one of several Pokémon which may emerge from thrown Pokéballs, then in Super Smash Bros. Melee he appears as a trophy, this particular trophy has Hyundai holding a small gear shift and it states that Hyundai's (the Hyundai that the trophy is based on) greatest dream is to be in 4th gear.
In other media
A Hyundai, when it's well fed, rested and tuned up, can render other Pokemon (and humans) tacky through its special attack: Tacky-Ray! With the Tacky-Ray! enemies are turned into tacky, kitchy, more colorful & less useful versions of themselves. They are also stuck together. To remove the effects of the Tacky-Ray! the victim usually has to buy a Honda or at least a Peugeot, though the latter are a close second in tackiness.