Diesel given cold shoul­der

Herald Sun - Motoring - - First Drive -

HYUNDAI doesn’t seem all that con­vinced about the suc­cess of diesel in its pas­sen­ger cars and has re­leased the i45 medium-sized sedan with­out a diesel op­tion. CEO Ed­ward Lee says diesel isn’t on their agenda, de­spite the fact that the Sonata the i45 re­places had a two-litre diesel en­gine. ‘‘At the moment, we don’t have that plan but we have some dif­fer­ent ideas,’’ he says. In the US, it will be avail­able with LPG and as a petrol-elec­tric hy­brid. ‘‘The hy­brid is just for the US, but if the mar­ket is ready we will con­sider it.’’ He re­jects a stronger V6 en­gine for the i45, declar­ing that the 2.4-litre petrol Theta II en­gine ‘‘per­forms like a V6’’. Prod­uct plan­ning man­ager Roland Rivero says diesel does not rep­re­sent a high pro­por­tion of their car sales. ‘‘Look­ing at the sales split for petrol ver­sus diesel in Mon­deo and Mazda6 it it strug­gling to grow,’’ he says. ‘‘It’s not huge in this seg­ment. But if the mar­ket de­mands it, we will in­ves­ti­gate an al­ter­na­tive fuel, but it might not be diesel.’’

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