The Seoul, South Korea headquarters for Hyundai have signaled a commitment to hybrid and electric vehicles. According to MSN Autos, an all-electric SUV with a 200 mile range is in the pipeline. Electrek tells us there will be four new all-electric Hyundai passenger cars on the road by 2020. And the company plans, by 2018, to launch a version of the Ioniq Electric with at least 200 miles of range. That’s the biggest commitment to electrification made by Hyundai so far
These reports come in quick succession partly in response to Chevrolet’s rollout of a Volt with 218 miles of range. The new Volt is expected to debut by 2018 at the latest. The next-generation Nissan Leaf is also expected to have at least one version with a 200-mile range. It will likely be unveiled and launched sometime over the next 18 months to replace the current Leaf, which has a 107-mile range.
The world of electric cars, once the playground of the “out there” types has gone mainstream, and the momentum is building. Hyundai CEO Dave Zuchowski confirmed this week that the company is planning to release five hybrids (HEV), four plug-in hybrids (PHEV), four electric vehicles (BEV) and one fuel cell vehicle (FCV) by 2020.
The industry-wide rising commitment to electric is in direct response to two stimuli. First, the Millennial Generation has shown a willingness toward electric. Their Baby Boomer and Generation X parents gave lip service to electric cars but never climbed off the Gasoline Express. Second, car companies are feeling pressure from upcoming CAFE fleet gas mileage standards. Simply put, the more electric cars a company can put on the road means the more lower-mileage SUVs and CUVs can share the road with them.
The sea-change makes for an interesting time in the world of personal transportation. It may just be the most exciting era since Henry Ford perfected the assembly line.
Hyundai IONIQ 2017 hybrid car unveiled at New York International Auto Show. Photo: lev radin / Shutterstock
MSN Autos, electrek.co, greencarreports.com
Gildshire Reporter, Kim Hastings