Hyundai i20 and ix55 (2008) first pictures

Published: 03 September 2008

This is Hyundai’s i20, the Korean company’s replacement for the Getz supermini. The new i20 will debut at the Paris motor show in October 2008, along with a plethora of low-emissions concepts and a new seven-seat 4×4.

Tell me about the new Hyundai i20

Sitting on an all-new platform with a wheelbase longer than the existing Getz, the i20 is Hyundai’s Ford Fiesta rival. The five-door arrives in the UK this January, followed by the three-door in March 2009.

But while the underpinnings of the i20 are new, the styling is clearly heavily influenced by the existing i30. That means a chrome grille, teardrop headlights and stacked tail lamps. Inside Hyundai is promising clever packaging and generous equipment levels, although we haven’t seen the cabin yet.

‘The i20 was designed and engineered to meet European tastes and needs,’ said Kun Hee Ahn, president of Hyundai Motor Europe. ‘It was built on an entirely new platform and much of the ride and handling development took place on European roads, which has created a firm and agile drive.’

Will there be a green version of the i20?

Yes, but it’s called i-Blue and it’s still a concept, for now. The concept features a full-length underfloor, front and rear aero tweaks, low rolling resistance tyres, low-friction engine oil and also sits 15mm lower than the standard car.

With a 1.4-litre diesel, that produces 89bhp and 162lb ft, and a six-speed ‘box over the standard five-speed unit, the i20 i-Blue will do 68mpg and only emit 99g/km. Impressive numbers.

Click ‘Next’ below to read about Hyundai’s new 4×4

What about this big 4×4?

Dubbed ix55, the 4×4 a new luxurious seven-seat SUV. Based on the existing Veracruz that Hyundai currently sells in the USA, it’s been restyled and retuned for European tastes, they say. But it’s not coming to the UK.

If the ix55 grates you with its anti-Gaia obnoxiousness, then Hyundai’s Sante Fe hybrid might appease us. With a 2.4-litre petrol engine, a six-speed automatic and a 30kW electric motor driven by lithium-ion batteries, the concept will do 44mpg and produce 148g/km of CO2 nasties.

The Genesis saloon will also make its European debut at Paris, along with the Genesis Coupe concept. Click here to read about the Genesis Coupe coming to the UK.

Keen on the new Hyundai i20 or more excited by the prospect of the ix55? Click ‘Add your comment’ below and have your say

By Ben Pulman

CAR's editor-at-large, co-ordinator, tallboy