The 2013 Equus serves as a showcase for all the progress that Hyundai has made in recent years; and in no way is it more apparent than in the Equus' interior.
At the same time, the automaker clearly has studied the Lexus LS and benchmarked everything from fit and finish to the comfort of the seats. In front, the Equus leaves the heavy bolstering--as well as the extendable thigh supports that taller drivers might appreciate--to German performance sedans. Front perches in the Equus are heated and ventilated, and there's a feature in which, like some competitors, the Equus driver seat can inflate and deflate some of its cushions to slowly massage the driver's back.
The Equus Signature model gets a three-person bench seat, while the Ultimate comes with dual buckets. And in a nod to those who plan to have the driving done for them (this is a model also designed with Hyundai's home executive-car market in mind), the Ultimate has a reclining, massaging seat in back--but only on the passenger side. The reality is that the Equus isn't quite long enough to sport a fully reclining chair and it doesn't leave much space for the passenger's feet (you can scoot the front passenger seat forward with switches on the side of that seat). But with a rake adjustment, as well as ventilation and massaging, it is a step above most other back-seat accommodations. Otherwise in models with the bench seat there's lots of legroom and headroom by conventional standards, the Equus is wide enough to fit three across.
Expectations are met up close as well; walnut or birch trim accents the instrument panel, and the cabin is trimmed out with fine leather. The headliner's sueded, just like the headliners in the top-line Jaguars, and the center console is framed in wood, with matte-metallic accents. It's all coordinated quite well, and more conservative than overt.
Climate and audio functions are directed through a rotary knob controller that's just behind the shift gate. A big LCD screen, for the so-called Driver Information System (DIS) is relatively close to the line of sight and framed by winged vents that mimic the Equus winged-bird badge. The only thing missing in the controls and displays, compared to other newer luxury cars, is a abbreviated screen display just in front of the driver (there is a multi-function trip computer, however).
Ride quality in the Equus is excellent. Even with the 20-inch wheels and tires there's no harshness, and road and wind noise are kept away from the cabin.