Hyundai Motor Debuts ¡°I-Oniq¡±

New sedan powered by both gasoline and lithium battery; Kia Motors to introduce the K5 hybrid sedan in Europe

Chairman Chung Mong-koo showed up at the 2012 Geneva International Motor Show on March 7 and toured the booths of Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors and a number of other booths of famous automakers including BMW, Toyota, and Volkswagen. Before touring the auto show, he presided over a meeting of Hyundai Motor Group officials stationed in European countries and checked on the performance of Hyundai and Kia Motors in Russia where the automakers have plants and marketing operations.
Chung won the 2011 Top Global Manager Award from Inter Auto News, a famous Italian auto magazine, which is presented to the CEO of the automaker who gets the largest number of votes from reporters covering the auto industry in Italy. He beat such notables as Chairman Martin Wintercon of Volkswagen, who placed second, and President Allen Mullaly of Ford Motor Co., who came in third.
Hyundai Motor Co. debuted its new concept passenger vehicle ¡°i-oniq¡± on March 2 prior to its official debut at the 2012 Geneva International Motor Show, the automaker said recently.
The brand new coupe-style model with a hatchback and four doors is built with both a three-cylinder 1.0 liter gasoline engine and a lithium battery engine, with a top speed of 120 km/hr while running on the battery engine. When fuel runs out, the i-oniq can be switched to battery power to continue to drive for a maximum distance of 700 km on both engines, the carmaker said. The battery can be recharged with the electricity generated by the wheels while driving.
In the meantime, Kia Motors will introduce the K5 hybrid sedan model in the European car market in June, Vice Chairman Yang Woong-chul, in charge of all R&D at the automaker, told Chairman Chung while touring the Geneva motor show.
Kia Motors introduced the Ray, its brand new electric sedan, at the motor show joining its sister Hyundai Motor¡¯s introduction of its i-oniq, a hybrid sedan model. The two affiliated automakers plan to launch their assault on the hybrid car market in Europe, which has began to understand the value of such cars, although they have been used to ¡®clean diesel¡¯ cars. Kia¡¯s K5 hybrid model will first be put on the European car market before the Sonata hybrid sedan, as its design could be more appealing to European car owners. Both hybrid cars have been selling well in the U.S. car market.
The Geneva International Motor Show will run from March 8-18. This year, 180 world and European premiers will be presented by the 260 exhibitors. As with every year, visitors will be able to discover the latest technologies and see the new models from more than 30 of the world¡¯s major manufacturers. In addition, the winner of the Car of the Year award will be named at the Geneva International Motor Show for the first time. As a result, and now more than ever, the Geneva International Motor Show has consolidated its position amongst the world leaders of international automobile exhibitions.
A visit to the Green Pavilion 2012 and a test drive on the adjacent circuit allows the visitor to discover and experience leading edge technologies, the latest developments in electric vehicles from renowned designers like Philippe Starck, plus the numerous products from the major automakers who have succeeded in creating and launching ecological vehicles in a very short time.
Hyundai Motor Co. had an outstanding year in 2011, breaking all kinds of records in such key areas as sales and profit as its Elantra sedan (Avante in Korea) was named ¡°Car of the Year¡± in terms of quality in the United States.
The largest auto company in Korea posted 77.79 trillion won in sales last year, up 16.1 percent YoY, with operating profit of 8.75 trillion won, up 36.4 percent YoY, and net profit of 8.1 trillion won. The company sold more than 4 million cars for the first time in its history at 4.05 million units, up 12.4 percent YoY compared to 3.61 million units sold in 2010.
Most of the sales came from overseas with only a 3.7 percent increase at home, while overseas sales posted a 14.3 percent rise over the previous year, due mostly to car designs and quality that appealed to overseas customers, Hyundai Motor officials said.

Chairman Chung Mong-koo of Hyundai Motor Group gestures while looking at a car at the Kia Motors pavilion at the Geneva Int¡¯l Motor Show March. 8-18 in Geneva, Switzerland.

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