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Future models - Hyundai - i-oniq

Geneva show: Hyundai unveils sleek i-oniq concept

Fine lines: This sketch of the i-oniq concept previews the future of Hyundai's 'fluidic sculpture' styling language.

Korean giant begins slow-burn reveal of its next big thing - the i-oniq concept

Hyundai logo16 Dec 2011

By MARTON PETTENDY

HYUNDAI has revealed its first teaser image of the ‘i-oniq’ concept car it plans to release not at the Detroit motor show on January 9 but the 2012 Geneva show next March.

The sleek i-oniq concept, more details of which will be revealed ahead of its world debut in Switzerland in almost three months, was designed and developed at the company's European R&D centre in Rüsselsheim, Germany.

Hyundai said only that the i-oniq will preview the next evolution of the brand's ‘fluidic sculpture’ design language, and it remains unclear whether the Korean giant’s latest show car hints at any specific future production model.

However, it is clear from the heavily stylised rendering that the i-oniq’s dominant front-side rising shoulder line, which is even more prominent than that seen on the mid-size i45 sedan and i40 wagon, is joined by a similarly bold feature line that extends from the upper side window line into a rear-quarter kink.

The i-oniq’s sleek, coupe-like roofline could provide a glimpse of a new sportscar from Hyundai, which will launch its all-new Veloster compact coupe here in February and the next-generation Genesis coupe around 2014.

Hyundai recently released a facelifted Genesis coupe in Korea and has confirmed the rear-drive two-door will be produced for right-hand drive markets including Australia in its next generation.

No such promise has been made for its four-door namesake, the BMW 5 Series-rivalling Genesis sedan, and Hyundai Australia has denied reports based on comments by its former product planner that the company was developing a smaller rear-drive premium sedan to compete with the 3 Series.

“Two strong arched curves define the silhouette of i-oniq, creating a playful contrast between the sharp character lines and soft but muscular features,” said Hyundai’s European design chief Thomas Bürkle.

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