Hyundai AE Hybrid Spied For The First Time – What Is It?
What will the new Hyundai AE hybrid car (Toyota Prius rival) be like?
Hyundai has some big plans when it comes to going green!
The Koreans are looking to land the number two spot in green car sales by the time 2020 comes.
They will do this releasing a number of hybrids, electric vehicles and fuel-cell cars.
Included in the mix will be a dedicated hybrid from Hyundai (developed under the AE codename).
This will not be an all-electric version of an existing model, but rather something all-new to challenge the Toyota Prius hybrid car.
The Prius has kind of a distinctive style, which begs the question as to what the Hyundai model will look like.
Design: Latest spy shots of the Hyundai AE hybrid point to the vehicle being a 5-door hatchback like the Prius. Hyundai may choose to deliver additional variants to create a family in the way that Toyota has done.
Test mules that showed up in the past appeared to be based on the Elantra GT hatchback, but the latest shots show a model that is steering away from that design and going more towards the look of the Prius.
Release date: All reports suggest that the powertrain will be a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder combined with an electric motor and a lithium-ion battery pack. The reports also suggest that the car will be released in 2017, with a plug-in hybrid model coming 12-18 months later.
Other Hyundai “green cars”: All told, Hyundai and Kia are expected to launch a total of 12 new hybrids before 2020. They will also release 6 plug-in hybrids, a pair of battery-electric vehicles, and 2 hydrogen fuel-cell cars.
The first of the new models will be the 2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid, which will be released this year. The Kia Optima Hybrid will come with a plug-in option, too, and will ride on the updated Sonata powertrain.
Hyundai will also continue to lease the Tucson Fuel Cell crossover, whilst also likely adding a mainstream fuel-cell into the line-up down the line. The Soul EV will be joined by the battery-electric versions of the Hyundai Elantra and Kia Forte.
It is the Hyundai AE hybrid which will challenge the Prius and that could be the game changer, though.
It is far more likely to sell in bigger numbers than any of the fuel-cell or battery-electric models. With some distinct styling and Prius-worthy fuel economy, the Hyundai may just end up with the green halo car it desires.