This is a drawing of Hyundai’s concept car that we’ll see at Geneva that will then transform itself by the end of the 2009 into the ix35, the Tucson replacement. Called HED-6, the Hyundai soft-roader is the work of its European design team and the sleek wedgy styling is a world away from the bulbous and anonymous looks of the current Tucson. We should see the final production version at the Frankfurt motorshow in the autumn.
It certainly looks cooler than a Qashqai or a RAV4…
It does, and Hyundai is hoping the car’s athletic styling, high spec levels and punchy engine line-up will imbue it with a bit more sales clout when it arrives at the end of the year. The concept car is powered by a production-ready 1.6-litre turbocharged GDi engine that’s good for 175hp, and this will be joined by a muscular 180bhp 2.0-litre turbo diesel flagship. The ix35 will offer a choice of front or four-wheel drive and will stick with its five-door five-seat layout, leaving the Santa Fe to handle larger seven-seat loads.
Will this be the star of Hyundai’s Geneva stand then?
It will, but we’ll also have a peek at the i30 Blue 1.6, which uses ISG (Idle Stop and Go) technology to cut emissions and consumption by 7% on the combined cycle and a lower 142run 7% on the official combined, while achieving a lower 142g/km CO2 rating. It will arrive here in the UK in September.
It might be overshadowed by the HED-6 and the i30 Blue, but keep an eye out for the three-door i20. The sleeker supermini hints that a warm version is in the wings. But rather than opt for petrol power, the i20 is expected to follow the Fabia vRS recipe and use the company’s 1.6-litre 125bhp turbo diesel engine for a sub 10second sprint to 60mph coupled with 116g/km CO2 and 65mpg economy.