2011 Geneva Motor Show Preview: 2011 Hyundai i40

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 17, 2011

Hyundai released today the first photos with the all-new 2011 i40, a new car which will make its world debut in March, at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show. According to Hyundai, this is firm’s first D-segment vehicle to be developed specifically for the European market. The new car will make its debut as an estate, while the saloon version will be revealed later this year, probably at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show.

The car was designed in Rüsselsheim, Germany and as you can see from the photos it takes cues from Hyundai’s ‘fluidic sculpture’ design language.

Some of the new features which will be seen on the i40 are heated and reclining front and rear seats; a heated steering wheel; and an active de-mist system that automatically detects and clears mist on the windscreen. Under the hood we will find a fuel-efficient 1.7-litre diesel engine, codenamed ‘UII’, which will emit just 113 g/km of CO2 emissions.

Allan Rushforth, Senior Vice President and COO of Hyundai Motor Europe, commented, “Offering more for less has always been a fundamental principle at Hyundai, and now we are advancing this with our new brand direction under the ‘New Thinking. New Possibilities.’ slogan.

The i40 is a perfect example of how we are offering the best and making it accessible to everyone. From stunning design and specification, to industry-leading technology and aftersales care – the i40 sets itself apart from its competitors.”

Nonetheless, the new Hyundai i40 sedan personifies an evolution of Hyundai's distinct 'fluidic sculpture' design language, which is characterized by nature-inspired flowing exterior lines. This design DNA was first seen on Hyundai iX-onic concept car unveiled at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show and has been the bases for all new Hyundai models like the ix35, ix20 and Veloster. As for the Hyundai i40 sedan design concept, key words were 'modern flow' and 'premium wing' – all of which evolved the fluidic sculpture philosophy.

For this new model, designers at the South Korean carmaker aimed to highlight the creation of fluidic volume featuring a modern touch and a sophisticated wing-like detail. Thomas Bürkle, Chief Designer at Hyundai Motor Europe Technical Centre, remarked that to give the i40 a distinctive look, they employed very strong, fluid lines from the front to the rear. He noted that Hyundai aimed to deviate from the typical three-box sedan, thereby creating a car featuring the sporty nature of the i40 wagon.

He added that they provided Hyundai i40 sedan with a stunning coupe-like silhouette by fashioning a low, elongated roof line. Inside, the new Hyundai i40 sedan is highly comfortable yet stylish. This is thanks to the fact that it has a wheelbase of 2.77 meters, best-in-class room dimensions for the front head at 1,025 mm, shoulder at 1,455 mm and leg at 1,170 mm.

Bürkle quipped that while the Hyundai i40 sedan features an exterior that stands out for its fluidic form and unique looks, its interior has been designed to offer practicality and comfort both to the driver and passengers.

In total, the Hyundai i40 sedan could be availed with any of the four available Euro V-compliant engines -- two petrol and two diesel – with power ratings ranging from 115 ps to 177 ps. These engines all offer torque delivery across a wide engine-speed range, which makes the sedan suitable for any driving situation.

These engines are mated to either a manual or automatic transmission. Hyundai is expecting the 1.7-litre diesel version of the Hyundai i40 sedan to account for most sales made to both private and fleet buyers. The South Korean carmaker is also expecting diesel-powered i40 to account for 65 percent of total sales, with gasoline-powered i40 taking the rest.

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