Following the launch of its all-new Elantra in April as part of Hyundai's promise to release at least one new model in China each year, Beijing Hyundai will make and sell another new Hyundai model in the first half of 2009, said sina.com. The Hyundai i30 hatchback will be built in the second plant of the joint venture.
The China-made Hyundai i30 is a hatchback model positioned between Hyundai Accent and Elantra, with a 2,650mm wheelbase and sharing most parts with Kia Cee'd. It is driven by the all-new 1.4L and 1.6L engines, which are more powerful and fuel-efficient than the current Elantra's engine of the same emissions. In safety, all editions have driver, passenger and curtain airbags, traction and stability control and finally ABS with EBD.
When its second plant starts operation early next year, Beijing Hyundai will have an annual capacity of 300,000 vehicles. The new plant's capacity will be reserved for the production of new Hyundai models to rival the Buick Excelle and Ford Focus. Making the Hyundai i30 hatchback is a good choice for Beijing Hyundai to boost its sales figures. Another new model (codenamed NFC) based on the 7th-generation Sonata sedan will also be built at the new plant soon.
Beijing Hyundai general manager J.M. Noh recently said that the joint venture will deliver two new models in each of the next three years. At the 2008 Guangzhou auto show last month, Beijing Hyundai unveiled the all-new Sonata model "Ling Xiang" -- the China-made Sonata which will go on sale in the coming few months. This model will rival Passat Lingyu in the D-class segment.
Beijing Hyundai is a 50:50 joint venture founded in 2002 by Hyundai Motor Co and Beijing Automotive Holdings. In 2007, the company sold 231,137 vehicles in the Chinese market. The joint venture has just reduced its sales target for this year to 320,000 units from the previous 380,000-unit goal that was set at the beginning of the year.