A Hyundai i10 Electric (Hyundai Grand i10 Nios Electric) small EV won’t be launched, at least not in the current generation. This development has been confirmed by a top-level company official.
Automakers usually follow a top-down approach for rolling out technologies across the line-up. This applies especially to alternative powertrains, like those for MHEVs, HEVs, PHEVs, BEVs and FCEVs. The aforementioned development was confirmed by Raf van Nuffel, Head of Product Management & Pricing, Hyundai (Europe).
Speaking about Hyundai’s electrification strategy to AutoWeek, Van Nuffel said that the company’s “innovations filter through from top to bottom.” Explaining why the company doesn’t plan to introduce an electric powertrain in the i10 right now, he said: “because our resources are not infinite and we are currently focusing on slightly larger models that can also be electrified competitive(ly).”
While a Hyundai i10 Electric or Hyundai i10 EV is not in the pipeline currently, Van Nuffel does see Hyundai’s smallest cars getting a hybrid or electric powertrain eventually. A-segment cars in Europe are not only getting an electric powertrain but also going electric-only now.
The VW up!, Skoda Citigo and Seat Mii are now available only with an electric powertrain. Maybe the next-gen Hyundai i10, including the Indian version, will be an electric-only model. Much will depend on whether doing that is feasible in the car’s main markets like India. An electric powertrain should be available in the next-gen Hyundai i10 but as an option.
Kia, Hyundai’s sister concern, is interested in introducing an electric powertrain in the Picanto, which is the i10’s platform-mate. However, pricing it affordably is challenging currently. In the case of the Picanto, too, the availability of an electric powertrain will likely become a reality in the next generation.
The first economical Hyundai EV in India will be an SUV, likely a Hyundai Venue Electric. It will be locally manufactured, obviously, and go on sale by 2022.