Hyundai Motor Group, responsible for the Genesis, Hyundai and Kia brands, is reportedly in the process of winding down development of internal-combustion engines to fully focus on electric powertrains.
Citing industry sources, The Korea Economic Daily reported last week that HMG has closed the engine development department located at its main R&D center in Hwaseong, South Korea, with staff to be transferred to departments developing electric motors, batteries and semiconductors.
The news is backed by comments made by Hyundai R&D chief Park Chung-Kook in an employee email seen by The Korea Economic Daily.
“Now, it is inevitable to convert into electrification,” he said. “Our own engine development is a great achievement, but we must change the system to create future innovation based on the great asset from the past.”
The news isn’t a huge surprise given pledges made by many automakers to offer full EV lineups within a decade. Among them is Genesis which in September said it plans to offer only EVs by 2030, including battery-electric and hydrogen-electric options.
Hyundai and Kia have also announced plans to launch multiple EVs in the coming years. For example, Hyundai already offers the Kona, Ioniq Electric, and Ioniq 5 in the U.S., and in the coming years will add an Ioniq 6 electric sedan and Ioniq 7 electric large crossover. Kia will launch its own versions of most of these, as already seen with the Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 twins.
HMG is also allocating resources for development of hydrogen infrastructure. Part of this will be used to advance hydrogen fueling and hydrogen-electric powertrains for transport trucks. Hyundai is working closely with truck powertrain expert Cummins in this area.
Source: Motor Authority