Hyundai reveals extreme new small car
The Hyundai Elantra is no more. The brand's next-generation small sedan will now be called the i30 sedan.
The little sedan will launch in Australia during the second half of the year and will take on the likes of the Corolla and Mazda3 sedans.
But the name change isn't the most extreme part of the small sedan's makeover. New styling is sure to polarise buyers in what is usually a very conservative segment.
The design, "parametric dynamics" in Hyundai-speak, is dominated by a huge, wide spider-web styled grille that dominates the car's front end and extends all the way to the slender headlights. The rear end is a mass of jagged edges and creases, while the profile is wedge-shaped.
Hyundai's head of design, Luc Donckerwolke says: "The fresh aesthetic was completed through unconventional lines and a face that broke a taboo in automotive design. The i30 Sedan is highlighted by its stance that looks like geometric crystals and divided body surfaces to get a strong emotional response from the customers."
Hyundai has confirmed it will build a hybrid version to sit alongside its petrol-powered examples.
The hybrid set-up consists of a 1.6-litre petrol four-cylinder matched to a 23kW electric motor making a combined 103kW and 264Nm, which is the same combo featured in the current Ioniq hybrid. This will be paired with a six-speed dual-clutch auto transmission.
Petrol-only models will be powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder making 109kW and 179Nm.
Hyundai is going big on tech for the new i30 sedan. On top of the list is a new digital key which can open, lock and start the car via a smartphone app.
And the car's new dual digital displays would look more at home in premium brands such as Mercedes-Benz. Hyundai has combined two large 10.25-inch displays under one piece of continuous glass, with one working as the digital cockpit and the other as the infotainment screen.
And for lovers of smartphone mirroring there will be wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Hyundai has added a mountain of safety gear including autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane keep assist, blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise and reversing camera with parking sensors.
We'll have to wait closer until the launch date to see what comes standard in Aussie-spec cars.
The switch from Elantra to i30 sedan will allow Hyundai to close the gap to the Mazda3 and Corolla in the sales race. Until now, Elantra and i30 have been counted separately in the official VFacts sales figures.