Hyundai i20 production to be shifted to Europe
Hyundai i20 production is rumored to be shifted to one of Hyundais European manufacturing plants.
A very popular B-segment Hyundai i20 hatchback, which has been on sale in Europe since last year, is facing a production base change. Latest news on Hyundai i20 coming from India indicate that Korean carmaker may shift its production from India to Europe, where Hyundai has recently opened a very modern manufacturing plant.
The latest and most modern Hyundai plant is located in Czech Republic and currently produces Hyundai i30 hatchback and wagon models for European market. The plant can build up to 300,000 cars per year and can build up to three different models.
But thats not the only possible choice that Hyundai has, as the automaker also has a plant in Turkey, where Hyundai Accent is being built and a Slovakian car manufacturing plant owned by Hyundai’s sister firm, Kia Motors.
So, there are three possible locations in Europe where Hyundai i20 production may be shifted. The decision on exact location has not been made just yet, but it is expected to be taken soon, according to our source.
The main reason why Hyundai has been considering shifting production from India to Europe is a 6,5 percent import duty levied by European nations on cars exported from India. In addition, Hyundai also has to pay high logistics cost of shipping the cars to Europe.
As we reported before, Hyundai also plans to add another new India-built entry-level hatch to its expanding small car line-up in a couple of years and they want to make space for its production. The model we are talking about is a small car, which is expected to fight against Tata Nano.
Hyundai has unveiled its i20 hatchback at the 2008 Paris Auto Show. The model has been on sale in Europe and India since December 2008 and has been a popular choice among European consumers. Till June, Hyundai manufactured 73,000 units of i20 hatch and exported a little over 60,000 cars to Europe.
Hyundai i20 is available as a three-door or a five-door hatchback. In Europe, the i20 is available with a total of seven different engine options, both diesel (1.4L and 1,6L CRDi) and gasoline engine options (1,2L, 1,4L and 1,6L). Engines come mated to either a five-speed or six-speed manual transmissions, but there is also a choice of four-speed automatic gearbox.
With nearly 5000 orders, Hyundai i20 has also been a popular choice among new-car shoppers taking advantage of Scrappage Scheme in the UK market. The i20, which has received a maximum five star safety rating at European crash tests, has been the second most popular Hyundai car after i10 mini car.