If you are impressed by the design philosophy of the new Hyundai Sonata, be ready to be thrilled by what the Korean maker could offer going forward. Hyundai presented to the world the i-flow concept car in Geneva, not only as a possible design study for the company's future products, but also as a testing ground for technological innovations.
Measuring 4.78 metres long, 1.85m wide and 1.4m high, the i-flow is about the size of a VW Passat. It points to a new D-segment family car Hyundai plans to launch in 2011. Its fluidic design, as Hyundai calls it, is aerodynamically sound and is targetted at the increasingly popular coupe-saloon sector currently dominated by models such as the Passat CC, MB CLS and the Audi A5 Sportback.
The concept model is powered by a 1.7-litre diesel engine with two-stage turbocharging linked to a Lithium Ion-Polymer battery. It is Hyundai's first diesel-electric hybrid powertrain and is mated to a 6-speed dual-clutch gearbox. Hyundai claims that this combination produces just 85 grams of C02 per km.
Expected the interior of the production model to be severely toned down from the concept, but I wish that the tail light combination and side profile will remain close to the concept, as they sent me salivating!