Hyundai Motor aims to sell 30,000 units of Ioniq hybrid

Hyundai Motor aims to sell 30,000 units of Ioniq hybrid

Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea’s leading carmaker, started selling the Ioniq hybrid, its first dedicated green car model, on Thursday, with an aim to sell as many as 30,000 units this year.

The Ioniq is a green car developed through its own platform as opposed to vehicles with designs and production based on existing gasoline or diesel models. Hyundai Motor plans to expand its lineup to electric vehicle and plug-in electric vehicle versions later on.

Hyundai Motor said it aims to sell 15,000 units each at home and abroad this year. For 2017, it will push to increase sales to 77,000 units including overseas shipment of 62,000 cars.

“We have concentrated all of our technology on the Ioniq under the objective to solidify the leadership of the future market,” Kwon Moon-sik, a vice chairman who leads research and development of Hyundai Motor Group, told reporters during a launch event held in Seoul.

“In the past, green cars were developed mostly by focusing on improving fuel efficiency at the expense of driving performance, but we came out with this model that makes sure that the driver can enjoy the highest fuel efficiency among same-class cars and have a fun driving experience at the same time,” he added.

Equipped with the new Kappa 1.6 liter GDi engine and a high-efficiency permanent magnet motor coupled with a six-speed double clutch transmission developed for hybrid models, the Ioniq can run up to 22.4 kmpl, almost on par with market leader Toyota Prius.

Its battery is located beneath the rear seats, keeping its overall weight low and balanced and also allowing more trunk space compared to other similar models, the company said.

For better fuel efficiency and safety, the Ioniq utilizes advanced high-strength steel for 53 percent of its body and has seven air bags along with an advanced air bag system for the driver.

Other convenience features such as smart cruise control, parking assist and cordless mobile phone systems are also available.

The Ioniq’s design was inspired by a killer whale, creating a “unique” aerodynamic exterior, the company said. The black-rimmed radiator grille and head lamps contrast with its surroundings, while the C-type LED daytime running lights combined with the wheel air curtain emphasize the overall dynamic image.

Punctuated by a slim and elongated dashboard, the interior gives a roomy impression. The chrome-coated gear knob, pedals, footrest and other touches also underline an overall luxurious image, Hyundai explained.

The vehicle’s prices range from 22.95 million won to 27.55 million won depending on trims and options. The prices reflect the tax breaks applied to hybrid models.

Hyundai Motor plans to begin selling the electric and plug-in hybrid versions in the second half. The Ioniq’s exports will start “in phases” in the second half as well in such markets as the U.S. and Europe.

For the Chinese market where demand for environmentally friendly vehicles is fast growing, Hyundai Motor said that it is “considering” exporting the Ioniq series to the country, though the timetable and other details have not been determined.

Company officials said that the Ioniq will appeal to customers with its higher fuel efficiency and much cheaper prices compared to the Prius.

Hyundai Motor earlier said that it plans to expand its green car lineup to more than 22 by 2020 with the aim to emerge as the world’s second-largest carmaker in the market. The auto giant added that it will raise the ratio of green car sales to around 10 percent until the target year from the current 2 percent level.


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