Hyundai’s looking to challenge the Toyota Prius with its new Ioniq in just about every area – except the sales chart.
That’s according to an Automotive News story that posits that Hyundai is aiming to give the Ioniq an advantage over the ubiquitous Prius in terms of power, fuel economy, and size, and for most people, styling.
The one thing Hyundai isn’t aiming at, though, is sales, as the company has set a relatively low target of 77,000 units. That’s in opposition to the Prius – Toyota has already taken 100,000 orders in Japan since the fourth-generation Prius hit the market in December. The Prius is almost synonymous with the word hybrid by now.
The Ioniq will have three available powertrain choices – hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and all-electric. That will make it Hyundai’s first dedicated electrified vehicle, and the company saved many millions using the vehicle to launch three car variants in one.
Hyundai’s brand stablemate, Kia, is also getting in on the electric game, with the Niro, which will use the same hybrid tech, and these cars are part of a broader thrust by the Korean automakers.
In all, Hyundai intends to introduce 22 “green” models by 2020. Some of these will be used to offset engines in the new Genesis luxury line that aren’t so eco-friendly, allowing Hyundai to comply with upcoming fleet fuel economy regulations.
The Ioniq will have more conventional styling, a lower and wider stance than the Prius, and more horsepower. Fuel economy and pricing for the U.S. have yet to be announced, but the Ioniq’s South Korean cycle fuel economy rating was in line with the Prius.
North American sales are expected to account for more than half of the Ioniq’s sales volume.