Hyundai has rolled out the red carpet for its 2020 i30 Sedan in a Hollywood debut that was livestreamed to the world.
The eyebrow-raising premiere marked the global reveal of the i30 Sedan, which is set to replace the beloved but ancient Elantra small sedan in Australia.
The i30 Sedan is underpinned by a new K3 platform which makes it lower, lighter and stronger compared to the outgoing Elantra, while its driving dynamics are also said to be improved thanks to a lower centre of gravity.
That platform also paves way for hybrid powertrains, and while Hyundai Australia says hybrid isn't on the cards for Australia just yet, it's left the door open for a possible mid-life introduction.
Due to arrive locally in the second half of the year, the i30 Sedan features a pointed front fascia that incorporates a gaping grille, sleek bodylines that Hyundai suggests render it closer to a coupe than a sedan and a tapered rear end that includes a full-width light bar that forms an ‘H’ shape.
On the inside, the i30 Sedan receives a much-updated connectivity suite thanks to two side-by-side 10.25-inch screens that sit under a singular pane of glass, wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone connection and will incorporate a ‘digital key’ that doesn’t require the use of a traditional key, instead using a smartphone to lock, unlock and start the car.
Other highlights include the now driver-focused cabin, 64-colour customisable lighting and a unique four-spoke steering wheel.
The release comes at an interesting time when small sedan interest is tapering worldwide, with Hyundai Motor America CEO Brian Smith saying “while some manufacturers no longer see the value in the car side of the business, we’re doubling down by offering an all-new model with both petrol and hybrid powertrains.”
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That aforementioned hybrid powertrain will take the form of a 1.6-litre GDI four-cylinder engine that pairs with a 1.32kWh lithium-ion battery to provide 130kW and 264Nm. The engine mates with Hyundai’s six-speed dual-clutch transmission much like other hybrids in the Hyundai range.
The standard powertrain that we’ll receive in Australia is a 2.0-litre MPI four-cylinder engine that can output 109kW and 179Nm, which will be paired with a new Intelligent (continuously) Variable Transmission that will simulate gear shifts like a conventional torque converter.
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Hyundai has also detailed a number of SmartSense safety features that include forward collision-avoidance assist with pedestrian detection, lane-keep and lane-follow assist, driver attention warnings and a rear-view camera as standard.
Optional safety equipment such as radar cruise control and other active measures to avoid crashes such as blind-spot avoidance assist, highway driving assist, and reverse parking assist will be offered on higher grades.
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Hyundai hasn’t finalised specifications for Australian offerings just yet, but it's fair to suggest that the sedan line-up will mimic that of the i30 hatch.
That means Go, Active and Premium variants offering a varying array of good gear, while a Hyundai spokesperson confirmed that a warmed-over N-Line variant will join the range later in the year.