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Geneva show: Hyundai gives i20 a lift

Tweaked: The facelifted Hyundai i20 light-sized car will hit the Australian market around mid-year.

Hyundai light car picks up ‘fluidic sculpture’ look ahead of mid-2012 local launch

5 Mar 2012

HYUNDAI has revealed its upgraded i20 sub-light hatch on the eve of this week’s Geneva motor show, brandishing a facelift and a new ultra-low-emissions 1.1-litre diesel engine.

While the revised styling draws on the South Korean brand’s ‘fluidic sculpture’ design theme and brings the i20 into line with other models in the stable, the headline act is a 55kW 1.1-litre three-cylinder ‘U-II’ oil-burner that, with the help of Hyundai’s ‘BlueDrive’ technologies, emits just 84g/km of CO2 – a figure claimed to be “lower than any other car with a conventional powertrain”.

Hyundai Motor Co Australia senior manager for PR and events Ben Hershman told GoAuto the updated i20 range was scheduled to arrive mid-year, but specifications for our market would not be available until closer to launch.

The current Australian i20 line-up relies solely on a 73kW 1.4-litre four-cylinder petrol engine, having dropped the 1.6 last year as Hyundai repositioned the range with the arrival of the Accent and the departure of the Getz.

This week, Hyundai also revealed an upgraded 1.4-litre U-II BlueDrive diesel that generates 66kW and emits 96g/km – another sub-100g/km model designed to strengthen its standing in the clean-diesel stakes, particularly in Europe.

In terms of design, the i20 picks up the corporate hexagonal grille and more sharply defined headlights, revised front and rear bumpers, a sculpted bonnet and new wheel trims.

The overall dimensions of the light car remain largely unchanged, although overall length has increased 55mm – 30mm at the front and 25m at the rear – over its predecessor to 3995mm.

Hyundai will also show the European-spec Veloster Turbo at the Geneva show, a model that was confirmed for release in Australia following its world premiere in Detroit in January.

As GoAuto has reported, the Korean auto giant will also show a plug-in hybrid sports hatchback concept – the ‘i-oniq’ – in Geneva, which presents a new styling theme and its latest work in alternative powertrains.

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