Hyundai Turns Blue

Cammy Corrigan
by Cammy Corrigan
hyundai turns blue

Volkswagen’s range of BlueMotion cars are their flagship “Look at us! We’re bluegreen!” vehicles. They employ techniques like a remapped engine, longer gear ratios and better aerodynamics to wring the last bit of mpg out of an ICU. The Blue Oval of Ford has the EcoBoost systems which are engines with a turbocharger or direct injection. That’s said to give power and torque on par with larger engine sizes, resulting in better fuel consumption and lower emissions. Daimler has its Bluetec, a slightly disgusting technology that requires overpriced urea to be added to your Benz – urea, as the name indicates, originally was a by-product of urine. (Now why didn’t the hyperkilometering AutoBild think of THAT?) Anyway, Hyundai wants in on the act.

Car Pages reports that Hyundai has four new vehicles in, what they call, the “Blue Drive” range. The vehicles adopting this will be the Hyundai i10 blue, the i20 blue, the i30 blue and the ix35 (you guessed it) blue. In addition to Volkswagen’s better aerodynamics, gear optimization, and rolling resistance tires schtick, Hyundai will also employ technologies like Stop and Go systems and a more efficient alternator to maximize the amount of energy generated during braking. They even resurrected the old spec racer’s trick of disconnecting the alternator when not needed. Gains you 2 to 5 hp right there. The engine will use a low friction oil to reduce wear and tear. What’s also unusual is that Hyundai won’t just be using diesel engines for their blue range: a small 1.0l petrol engine will also be available, increasing the chance that these blue cars will go to the land of red, white and …

The end result of all of this work by Hyundai engineers is to meet the EU mandate of lower CO2 emissions. The i10 (about the size of a Toyota Aygo or Ford KA) will emit 99gm/km, which will make it exempt from car tax in the UK. Curiously, the i20 blue (the size of a Ford Fiesta or Honda Jazz) will emit less than the i10 blue at 98gm/km. The i30 blue (the size of a Toyota Corolla or Ford Focus) will emit 98gm/km for the hatchback and 99gm/km for the estate version. The most impressive of them all will be the ix35 (which is a C-segment SUV model) which will produce 135gm/km, better than some C-segment hatchbacks.

Hyundai’s blue cars are slated for production at the end of 2010/beginning of 2011. Now, for the most pressing question: What’s with the worldwide infatuation with blue? GreenMotion, GreenTec and Green Drive probably would have been too obvious, I guess.

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  • Paul Niedermeyer Paul Niedermeyer on Mar 12, 2010

    Only some of the MB Bluetec diesels use the urea, mainly the bigger SUVs. The smaller passenger cars generally don't; they use a de-nox catalyst.

  • Don1967 Don1967 on Mar 12, 2010

    Blue is the new Green: Environmental respect, only with fiscal common sense instead of Al Gore fashion accessories. It's a step in the right direction, if a very small one.

  • FreedMike Race car drivers are all alpha-types. Aggression is part of the deal. I think you see more of that stuff in NASCAR because crashes - the end result of said aggression - are far more survivable than they would be in F1 or IndyCar.
  • Analoggrotto Only allow Tesla drivers to race, we are the epitome of class and brilliance.
  • Wjtinfwb When my kids turned 16 and got their Operators, we spent $400 to send both (twins) to 2 driving schools. One held by the local Sherriff was pretty basic but a good starter on car control and dealing with police officers as they ran the school. Then they went to a full day class in N Atlanta on a racetrack, with the cars supplied by BMW. They learned evasive maneuvers, high speed braking, skid control on a wet skid pad and generally built a lot of confidence behind the wheel. Feeling better about their skills, we looked for cars. My son was adamant he wanted a manual, Halleluiah! Looking at used Civics and Golf's and concerned about reliability and safety, I got discouraged. Then noticed an AutoTrader adv. for a new leftover '16 Ford Focus ST six-speed. 25k MSRP advertised for $17,500. $2500 above my self-imposed limit. I went to look, a brand new car, 16 miles on it, black with just the sunroof. 3 year warranty and ABS, Airbags. One drive and the torquey turbo 2.0 convinced me and I bought it on the spot. 7 years and 66k miles later it still serves my son well with zero issues. My daughter was set on a Subaru, I easily found a year old Crosstrek with all the safety gear and only 3k miles. 21k but gave my wife and I lots of peace of mind. She still wheels the Subaru, loves it and it too has provided 7 years and 58k miles of low cost motoring. Buy what fits your budget but keep in mind total cost over the long haul and the peace of mind a reliable and safe car provides. Your kids are worth it.
  • Irvingklaws Here's something cheaper, non-german, and more intriguing...
  • Wjtinfwb Happy you're loving your Z4. Variety is the spice of life and an off-beat car like the Z4 intrigues me as well. More than anything, your article and pictures have me lusting for the dashboards of a decade ago. Big, round analog gauges. Knobs and buttons to dial up the A/C, Heat or Volume. Not a television screen in sight. Need to back up? Use the mirrors or look over your shoulder. If your Z4 had the six-speed manual, it would be about perfect. Today's electronified BMW's leave me ice cold, as do the new Mercedes and Audi's with their video game interiors. Even a lowly GTI cannot escape the glowing LED dashboard. I'm not a total luddite, Bluetooth streaming for the radio would be nice and I'd agree the cooled seats would be a bonus on a warm day with the top down. But the Atari dashboard is just a bridge too far for me.