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How Hyundai and Kia will leave petrol and diesel behind: Korean giant's grand electric plans headlined by battery and hydrogen fuel-cell power

The aptly named Prophecy concept previews Hyundai’s second dedicated all-electric model, the Ioniq 6 sedan.

Hyundai Motor Group (HMG) – the parent company of Hyundai, Kia and Genesis – has not only announced when it will go carbon neutral, but also how it will go about the ambitious move.

Specifically, HMG has committed to reducing its carbon emissions to 75 per cent below its 2019 level by 2040, with neutrality to be achieved in its products and global operations by 2045. Of note, premium brand Genesis will make the transition 10 years earlier.

Zero-emissions vehicles (ZEVs) will naturally be key to this, with HMG putting effort into battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles (FCEVs), with it aiming for 30 per cent of its global sales to be ZEVs by 2030, ahead of 80 per cent by 2040.

By 2040, HMG is planning to phase out all petrol and diesel engines “in major markets”, with Europe to lead the way from 2035, in line with the European Union’s proposed ban of fossil-fuel vehicles.

So, which dedicated BEVs will be key to this transition? Hyundai-wise, the Ioniq 5 mid-size SUV is currently in the process of being launch, while the Ioniq 6 mid-size sedan will joinit next year, ahead of an ‘Ioniq 7’ large SUV in early 2024.

But the big news is confirmation that Hyundai’s Nexo large SUV will enter its second generation in 2023, when a second FCEV based on the Staria people mover will also be released, while a third model, a large SUV, will follow after 2025.

HMG president and CEO Jaehoon Chang said: “Under our company’s vision, Progress for Humanity, Hyundai Motor is determined to do the right thing for the world.

“Climate change is an undeniable challenge that needs everyone’s utmost and urgent attention.

“Hyundai Motor commits to become carbon neutral in its global products and operations by 2045, and we will make investments in cleaner transportation and greener energy solutions to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all.”