Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik made a pledge that by 2025, its entire US vehicle lineup will achieve an average of 50 mpg. While speaking at the Management Briefing Seminars, Krafcik said that Hyundai's US market share rose by 50% since it became the leader in fuel economy in 2008.
Krafcik said that getting to 50 mpg and exceeding that is a huge leap but he knows this can be achieved by committing to it and aligning its r&d initiatives now.
Hyundai will be accomplishing the benchmark with improvements in powertrains (such as gasoline direct injection, turbocharging, electric hybrids, plug-in hybrids) and the use of lightweight materials and other innovations.
Krafcik said that Hyundai would achieve the 50 mpg target with about 80% of its fleet still using traditional gasoline engines.
About 20% would be composed of hybrid, electric and other alternative-fuel vehicles. Notably, Hyundai made its commitment for an average 35 mpg for its fleet by 2015 even before the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last year raised the federal standard to 35.5 mpg by 2016.
Krafcik said that the redesigned 2011 Sonata mid-sized sedan will be available only with four-cylinder engines that have a highway rating of 35 mpg.
The vehicle started selling in January. Krafcik added that only about 10% of mid-sized sedan buyers actually want a V-6, so Hyundai cut about 40 pounds by removing the packing and other things required to fit a V-6 under the hood.