Following the unveiling earlier this year of the first of its i-blue range of advanced eco-dynamic vehicles, Hyundai Motor Europe has revealed the latest addition to the family: the i20 blue.
Based on the all-new i20 B-segment car, premiered at the 2008 Mondial de l'Automobile in Paris, this 'blue' variant incorporates a number of real-world modifications to further enhance the standard car's already-impressive environmental credentials. These improvements are achieved without compromising performance, reliability or driver satisfaction, making the i20 blue a realistic solution for motorists.
The 'blue' package involves revisions to the i20's power train efficiency, aerodynamics and chassis, to deliver a significant reduction in CO2 emissions and fuel consumption, positioning the i20 blue alongside the leading performers in the segment.
While the regular i20 achieves notably low figures for CO2 emissions and fuel consumption - 115g/km and 4,3 litre/100km respectively - the i20 blue delivers even more impressive results: just 99 g/km and 3,75 litres/100km. In other words, the i20 blue offers a reduction of 15 per cent in CO2 emissions and an improvement of 15 per cent in fuel efficiency, compared to the already-competitive i20.
Power train and performance
The i20 blue runs the extremely efficient 1.4 CRDi diesel engine, which produces 90PS and generates 220 Nm of torque. The power train is mated to a six-speed manual gearbox - instead of the car's usual five-speed unit - in which the ratios have been modified in 3rd, 4th and 5th gear. Performance is very respectable in the i20 blue, with a top speed of 176 km/h and a 0-100km/h time of around 13 seconds.
Engine efficiency has been improved by minimizing driveline friction and by utilizing high-performance, low-friction engine oil. Also optimized for low emissions and high efficiency is the engine's electronic software, which manages timing, injection pressure and idle speed.
Perhaps the most noticeable change from the driver's perspective is the application of a Hyundai-specific ISG Start-Stop system. A Bosch product, customized for the i20 blue, this innovation cuts the engine when the car is stationary and the gearbox is disengaged, and restarts the engine when the clutch pedal is depressed. This activity is particularly effective at minimizing emissions in slow-moving, urban traffic.
Advances in aerodynamic drag reduction contribute to the vehicle's remarkably low emissions and fuel consumption statistics. Ground clearance has been reduced by 15 millimeters compared to the regular i20, while full-length under floor covers enhance the car's aerodynamic efficiency.
Externally, the i20 blue closely resembles the 'standard' i20. Bespoke badging on the rear indicates that the car belongs to the 'i-blue' fold, and those with a keen eye will notice the application of the Michelin Energy low rolling resistance tires and the subtle changes made to the design of the grille and bodywork.
Hans Ullrich Göbel, Manager Product Planning at Hyundai Motor Europe Technical Centre, said:
"By drawing on currently available Hyundai technologies and design techniques, we are able to deliver to the market an uncompromised line-up of optimized, low-emissions vehicles, of which the i20 blue is the latest example. Its ultra-competitive environmental credentials demonstrate our commitment to conceiving eco-friendly models which can be mass-produced today, while we also focus on developing solutions for the medium and long term.
"Hyundai takes very seriously its environmental and social responsibilities, and is making efforts on many fronts to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, cut consumption and waste, and preserve resources. We recognize the importance of anticipating and responding to ever-increasing customer and legislative demand, and we plan for change in our global operations as well as in our vehicle line-up."