It’s a Hyundai, diesel, and seats up to 12.
For a lot of Americans, besides the occasional hit K-Pop song gone viral, Squid Game is one of the first pieces of South Korean entertainment they’ve sat down to watch.
It also might be the first time Americans glimpsed car culture outside of the continental United States.
Naturally, gear heads, like myself, are curious to know what kind of multi-seat Hyundai van is featured prominently in Season 1 of Squid Game.
The van in Season 1 of Squid Game is a second generation Hyundai Grand Starex, a popular South Korean MPV exported throughout the world capable of seating up to 12.
Here are a couple of screenshots of the van in question.
Despite nine episodes featured in modern day South Korea, we see few vehicles portrayed. The only car prominently featured is this van or, as they refer to them not in the United States, MPVs.
The Hyundai Grand Starex first makes its appearance in Episode 2 when a driver from Squid Game Island picks up Seong Gi-Hun and knocks him out with sleeping gas.
The Grand Starex is prominently featured in Episode 3 when players return to the island after reconsidering their lives, deciding to take their chances once again.
Just like the guards dressed in monotone jumpsuits and anonymous masks, all the Grand Starexes shown come in the same color and features.
This is most apparent from this overhead shot with 20 Hyundai Grand Starexes parked bumper to bumper on the ferry ride.
Hyundai Grand Starex MPVs are just as large as our American vans but, with an emphasis for seating over cargo space, Starexes emphasize third row capabilities with, as the photo shows below, seating for up to 12 with an available center seat up front.
Most Hyundai Grand Starexes are powered by a 2.5L turbocharged diesel engine that puts out around 170 HP and 253 lb-ft.
Because of the Hyundai Grand Starexes quality, power, and capabilities, it’s one of the most popular vans in the world. They’re particularly popular in South East Asian countries, especially in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
Squid Game Season 2 is definitely in the cards and we’ll probably see the Hyundai Grand Starex featured once again.