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Beijing show: Hyundai’s ix25 leaks online

Small fry: This image of a Hyundai small SUV – dubbed ix25 – first appeared on Italian blog jokeforblog.blogspot.fi (pictured below is Hyundai's 2014 Intrado concept).

Hyundai-BAIC joint venture set to spring ix25 at Beijing show as image leaks online

Hyundai logo15 Apr 2014

AN OFFICIAL image that reportedly shows Hyundai’s forthcoming new sub-compact SUV dubbed the ix25 has leaked online ahead of its unveiling at the Beijing motor show this weekend.

Posted on Italian blog site jokeforblog.blogspot.fi, the production ix25 has obvious similarities with the larger ix35 but a slightly sharper edge to its silhouette and styling cues such as its eagle-eyed headlights and more aggressive grille treatment.

There is a hint of the Hyundai Curb concept in the heavily toned-down road-going vehicle, which emerges three years after the South Korean auto giant presented its city SUV design direction at the 2011 Detroit motor show.

However, the apparently official image bears little resemblance to the Peter Schreyer-designed Intrado concept shown in Geneva last month, which was also touted as a potential precursor to the ix25.

Although the ix35 is the dominant force among compact crossovers in the Australian marketplace, its larger size means it straddles the traditional small SUV segment rather than competing head-to-head with smaller, newer rivals such as the Ford EcoSport and Holden Trax.

It remains to be seen whether the ix25 – a name still to be confirmed – will be offered in right-hand drive and pitched from the outset at mature western markets such as Australia, with overseas reports indicating that it will be built in China as part of a joint venture between Hyundai and BAIC.

The Beijing show is therefore the obvious choice for its international premiere.

It is understood that the ix25 is based on the same platform as the i20, with a small-displacement petrol and diesel powertrain line-up along the same lines as the light hatch.

Hyundai Motor Europe senior vice-president and chief operating officer Allan Rushforth told GoAuto at the Geneva motor show last month that the SUV crossover segment was showing the greatest potential for the brand in Europe.

“Absolutely, it (a light-sized SUV) would be an important part of the brand’s development towards five per cent market share in Europe,” he said.

“We are only 3.4 at the moment and we need to move forward and we need to do that organically.”

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