Thursday, 26 May 2016

HYUNDAI Brand History

Hyundai is a self-grown South Korean brand of automobiles established in the 1960's. Presently part of the Hyundai Kia Automotive Group, the motor company has registered a steady growth over the past few decades, having successfully entered European and American markets. The assembly lines operated by the company were built to match its size, the manufacturing facility in Ulsan being able to produce 1.6 million units per year.

Founded by Chung Ju Yung, born into a poor family of farmers, the Hyundai Motor Company became the first Korean car producer. The grounds for finding a car company could not have been more welcoming since post-war years in Korea brought forth a series of odd politics one of which stated that automobile imports were better than having a Korean car brand.

Yung was quick to fill the void, having raised enough capital for the investment from his very profitable construction business, opened in 1947. One year after its birth, the Hyundai Motor Company signed a technology-share agreement with Ford in 1968. Soon after Hyundai's access to Ford's resources, the first Hyundai car was developed: the Cortina. This model was quickly followed by the release of the Pony, Hyundai's first entirely Korean designed and built model. Its blueprints however, were not all-Korean, the company having used Japanese technology from Mitsubishi to develop the car.

Japanese constructors at the time had already developed wide range of models, many of which were exported worldwide, mainly to the US and South America. The Pony model was the first Hyundai to be shipped overseas in 1975.

However, Hyundai would only cross US borders later, in 1986, with the release of the Excel. The subcompact car was an instant hit with its fairly small price tag accounting for most of its popularity. The Excel was such a hit that it sold in over 100,00 units in the first seven months.

This was the last automobile that Hyundai produced before resorting to their own technology in 1988. The Sonata was their first born, a mid-size car that marked the beginning of a new era. Despite the steps the company had taken into building a strong brand image, the reputation Hyundai had previously collected was lost because of poor quality and reliability complaints.

As soon as the 90's came, Hyundai was short of air on American territory, struggling for one last gasp. Instead of retreating, the company made massive investments in new design and technology. By the time the new millennium came, the company had already reinstated as one quality car manufacturer.

Sales increased once more and with them so did the buyer's confidence in Hyundai. The sudden shift in consumer behavior was made possible by eliminating all worries regarding the vehicle's reliability through the introduction of a 10 year warranty to US sold vehicles only. Since few companies could top that, Hyundai quickly earned a spot in the world's top -10 car manufacturers.

Hyundai is currently operating in 193 countries, selling vehicles through approximately 5,000 showrooms and dealerships. Sales have also aided image growth, the brand having entered the first 100 most valuable brands of the world. Its recent history is strongly connected to investments in technology and ample advertising campaigns. Indeed, communication is one of Hyundai's inherent elements, best described by their logo: the stylized H is in fact a representation of two men (brand-buyer) shaking hands.

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Monday, 11 April 2016

Hyundai Motor Company Success Story

The Hyundai Motor Company was set up in 1967 as a subsidiary of the Hyundai Engineering & Construction Company. The company started off by assembling cars and trucks for the Ford Company in their car factory. In 1975 they produced their first car called the Hyundai Cortina which was produced in partnership with the Ford Motor Company. Within the next two years they had become the 13th largest automaker in the world with 2% share in the world retail market.

In 1975, the company decided to build its own car which it would sell under the brand name ‘Hyundai’. They hired five of the best car engineers from Britain who designed their first car, ‘Hyundai Pony’. The car soon became the number one selling car in South Korea because of its small size and economical pricing. Next the Hyundai Pony entered the Canadian market and within 9 months became the top-selling car there. By 1985, their production had exceeded more than 1 million cars.
In 1986, they entered the U.S. market with their new ‘Hyundai Excel’ car. This car also proved to be a bestseller because of its quality and low pricing. In 1986 more than 160,000 units were sold and the next year it crossed 260,000. Now Hyundai have established itself as one of the top competitors in the world automobile industry. Their next release was the midsize Sonata in the year 1988. This model did not click in the U.S. market but by then Hyundai was already producing 4,000,000 units per year. ​
Hyundai restructured themselves by investing heavily in the quality, design, research and manufacturing of its vehicles. As a result they came up with the first proprietary gasoline engine with its own transmission including the four- cylinder Alpha. They started giving a 10-year or 10,000-mile warranty for all their cars sold in the U.S. This improved their image and prompted more and more customers to choose a Hyundai car over other brands.
It continued its success with the release of best-selling cars like the Hyundai Elantra, Hyundai Tucson, Hyundai Santa Fe, and Hyundai Genesis. Hyundai has been receipt of many awards over the years for it’s their car’s durability and fuel-efficiency.
By 1995, Hyundai had setup sales in countries like Australia, New Zealand, Egypt and Japan where it released country specific models according to customer requirements. In 1998, Hyundai purchased a 51% stake in Kia Motors which was then the second largest automobile manufacturer in South Korea. By the year 2000, it had manufacturing plants in India, China, Pakistan, Turkey and Czech Republic.  In 2004, the company had $56 billion in revenue with sales of more than 2,500,000 units.  By the year 2011, Hyundai sold more than 4.04 million cars making it the fourth largest car maker in the world behind GM, Volkswagen and Toyota.
In 2012, Hyundai sold 4.5 million vehicles worldwide and together with their subsidiary Kia total sales exceeded 7 million units. As of 2013, Hyundai produces more than 3,000,000 units every year in its plants spread across the world. It has more than $ 82 billion in revenue and nearly 75,000 employees. From taking a cautious start in the automobile industry, Hyundai has today become one of the most trusted four wheeler brands in the world. Hyundai’s success has been a result of its continuous focus on expansion and customer satisfaction.

​Hyundai has reputable dealers, such as Group 1 Hyundai, across the world!


Monday, 21 March 2016

This mom needs a Hyundai i30!

Spent the weekend taking care of the usual domestic duties? Headed to a busy shopping centre, visited some family and did a lot of running around with the kids? Is this you? Folks buy the new Hyundai i30 because they need a comfortable, practical and affordable way to get their family and themselves around, and in this role the i30 is a peach.The updated design is far more upmarket than before, with a fresh new grille. Very comfortable and well laid out. There is a quality feel to the latest Hyundai i30 cabin regardless of specification, and there are more than enough niceties to make it feel like something more than a base model.

We had a good giggle at this brilliant UK TV Ad about a mom on a car shopping spree! Enjoy!


Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Kids test quality of Hyundai i30

Playtime got serious recently when pupils from Holmer Green First and Junior Schools in Buckinghamshire in the United Kingdom taught car manufacturer Hyundai a lesson in quality testing. School children became the brand’s ‘Next Generation Testers’ and put its i30 Tourer through an extreme durability test to assess its suitability as a family car.

Recognising that little people can provide big insights, Hyundai went back to school. The car brand recruited a panel of 25 children aged between 4 and 10 to carry out a series of quality tests on its New Generation i30 Tourer and see if it really is tough enough to stand up to the challenges of everyday family life.

This is the next installment of Hyundai’s unique quality tests after the carmaker put the hatchback version of the Hyundai i30 through similar unusual testing at Knowsley Safari Park last year. Responding to customer feedback that their ‘little monkeys’ would be much harder on a car than 40 baboons, the brand decided to put the theory to the test.

Specially-designed for families and their children, the i30 has been made using extra strong materials, easy-wipe plastics, tough fittings and special high-quality steel for the bodywork. Hyundai parked its car in the school’s playground and then let eight times as many children as in the UK’s average family subject it to some rigorous testing. Six hours later, the tough tourer cleaned up as new and was driven out of the playground fully intact and virtually unscathed.
The children simulated the typical car punishment that parents dread but sometimes have to deal with: jumping and bouncing up and down on seats (in muddy wellies on this occasion), prodding buttons and opening storage compartments, repeatedly putting windows up and down, dropping crisps, squashing bananas into fabrics and spilling orange juice on the seats.The car’s gadgets were also inspected, with the children pulling faces to their friends in the reversing camera and making calls to their teacher using the car’s hands-free Bluetooth system.

Outside, the paintwork was put to test after magnets were thrown onto the car and mud smeared all over the body panels. The children investigated whether the i30 really was ‘made of steel’ by using the bonnet as a slide and thumping the doors with drumsticks. Thankfully, the hard-wearing paint protected the car from significant scratches and chips.

As well as confirming the robust quality of its New Generation i30 Tourer, Hyundai will use the findings to inform the research and development of its future cars. Mark Baxter, Hyundai UK’s product planning manager, said: “At Hyundai we believe in ‘New Thinking’, which is why we like to take a different approach when it comes to quality testing. Kids are notoriously hard on cars and these days families need transport that will withstand sticky fingers, accidental spillages and energetic personalities. We wanted to see if the i30 Tourer really is a fully suitable and durable family car – we thought that if it can withstand the tests of 25 kids, we could be confident that it would be tough enough for family life.

“I must say, I was extremely nervous about doing this test. I have a child myself so I know exactly how messy kids can be. But I am very confident in the quality of Hyundais. As I suspected, the reception children gave our New Generation i30 Tourer a thorough inspection and the Year 5 pupils provided me with some very useful feedback. The fact that the i30 survived with only a few scratches after such rigorous testing is testament to the way modern Hyundai vehicles are built.”

Tyreece Carey, a five year old reception pupil from Holmer Green First School said: "It was really good fun playing all over the car. My favourite part was getting really messy with my muddy wellies. And I enjoyed making sandcastles in the boot. Mrs McClelland said I could only do this today and that I mustn’t do it in Mummy or Daddy’s car.”

Sandy McClelland, Headteacher of Holmer Green First School said: “This is such an exciting project for our school; we were delighted when Hyundai approached us to take part. “In preparation for this challenge, we taught the children about transport and product testing. We also ensured that it was very clear that this would be a once in a lifetime opportunity – not to be repeated at home!

“Children love to help and they are extremely inquisitive. Personally, I can’t think who would be better suited to such a job. And the best part of today was when the children saw how dirty they had made the car and asked if they could help clean it - surely a lesson learnt in itself!”

Yasmin Pierce, a 10 year old pupil from Holmer Green Junior School commented: “I really enjoyed becoming a quality inspector for Hyundai. We called ourselves the ‘Junior Scientists’ and it was our job to inspect the car while the reception children got it extremely messy. It was good to be able to feedback our findings to Hyundai and I thought that the i30 was really stylish and overall very strong. It is a good car for families.”

Rebecca Campbell, head teacher of Holmer Green Junior School, commented: “Pupils who had shown a keen interest in Science and Technology were chosen to take part in this project and they were extremely excited about the challenge set by the car maker.”

She added: “The children took their role as Hyundai’s quality inspectors very seriously. They watched every move that their younger peers made, noting down feedback throughout the day and then presenting it back to Hyundai’s product planning manager. Ensuring a professional job, my pupils even inspected the car with a magnifying glass! This challenge gave them the opportunity to learn about quality testing and the automotive industry, but in a practical and engaging way.”

To thank Holmer Green and its pupils for all of their help, Hyundai is funding new equipment for both of the schools.

Monday, 11 January 2016

Hyundai ix35 in Review

Another wedding, another trip to Western Australia…
Following in the footsteps of last June’s Ford EcoSport Perth trip, this latest maritally driven adventure would see the lady and I again trek over west, but this time armed with the small SUV segment’s top-seller, the Hyundai ix35.

Flying from Melbourne to Perth and straight on to a four-day wedding in Exmouth — 1270km north of Perth on WA’s North-West Cape — any kays in the Hyundai ix35 would have to wait for our post-nuptials return.

Wedding done and dusted — he said yes, she said yes, you know, the usual — we fly back into Perth and get a short cab ride to pick up our Cobalt Coast blue ix35 Active.

The top-selling compact SUV’s entry-level automatic model, the Active, starts at $29,190. Sitting $2200 above its six-speed manual equivalent, our front-wheel-drive Active teams a six-speed automatic transmission with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder direct-injection petrol engine.
Developing 122kW at 6200rpm and 205Nm at 4000rpm, the 1485kg South Korean claims a fuel use of 8.4 litres per 100km on the combined cycle — that means more power and torque but slightly worse fuel economy than the segment’s second-best seller, the all-wheel-drive Subaru XV.

Based on the Series II Hyundai ix35 introduced in October 2013, our 4410mm long and 1820mm wide Active specification comes standard with revised headlights, faux-metal roof rails, reclining rear seats, tweaked suspension and new-look hubcaps for its 17-inch steel rims.

For the keen-eyed spotters out there, the Series II also sees the rear ‘ix35’ tailgate badge switch sides and the outgoing model’s lettered rear ‘Hyundai’ badge deleted altogether.

Other standard equipment includes LED daytime running lights, cruise control, rear parking sensors, hill-start assist, a six-speaker stereo with Bluetooth connectivity and audio streaming, and a full-size spare wheel (ideal for just such road trips and always a great confidence booster).

Day one with the Hyundai ix35 Active comprises a brief introduction, loading up its 516–litre boot (expandable to 1615-litres) with two full-size suitcases and heading off for a 182km drive south to Bunbury, where we would stay the night with some accommodating friends — friends who also happen to own two dogs, one being a ginormous Rhodesian Ridgeback.

Up early-ish the next day, the lady and I head 54km further south to Busselton via the Tuart Forest National Park.

Seated up front in the ix35 Active’s standard cloth seats, things are reasonably comfortable. Lumbar support is mild at best, though, and the other half is disappointed to learn that passengers miss out on seat height adjustment of any kind.

Lucky for us, with the lady being a WA native, the Hyundai’s lack of satellite navigation isn’t a major flaw for our cross-state adventuring but having to turn cruise control to ‘on’ after every restart, while not entirely uncommon, does get annoying (particularly on this sort of road trip).

Road noise over coarse-chip sealed blacktop is present from inside the cabin, with tailgate rattle a near constant when traversing poorer, choppy surfaces.

From Busselton’s town centre we travel around 2km to the Busselton Jetty. Normally a lovely place to walk and sit and take in the views, for us, things go less well with the lady getting stung by a bee causing an ‘emergency’ run back on the jetty’s own train — a super small multi-carriage designed to transport parents and kids at a maximum speed barely beyond walking pace.

Bee sting treated with ice-cream and antihistamines, we soldier on a further 24km south to reach Dunsborough and its famous bakery…

Next stop is the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse via Castle Rock and Meelup Beach.

After a couple of quick snaps and a decision to not climb to the top of the light-up landmark, we jump back into the little Hyundai targeting Margaret River — a mere 74km away.

An exciting Kangaroo sighting at Sugarloaf Rock on the way to ‘Margs’ is an unexpected thrill, with another quick leg stretch squeezed in at Canal Rocks.

More time in the car reveals a few small issues, though none are deal breakers. There’s no rear-view camera, which isn’t a huge negative but definitely worth remembering. The second-row centre seatbelt can mildly obstruct rear vision. And the ix35’s slightly paranoid auto-lock feature means, provided the key is still in the ignition (yes, there’s no start-stop button here), you have to manually push the unlock button every time you want to allow passengers access in or out.

The end of day two sees us drive 98km back to our Bunbury base, ready for our third day exploring southern WA.

Racking up 400km in a far from direct route from Bunbury to Perth, day three includes a visit to the lady’s birthplace in Bridgetown (93km from Bunbury) via a blast through WA’s super quiet and highly entertaining Golden Triangle, which links Bridgetown with Balingup and Nannup.
From Nannup (180km from Bunbury) we shoot to Margaret River (266km from Bunbury)…

again, as I left my hat in a restaurant and obviously had to go back and get it. Needless to say, by the time we reach Perth for takeaway Indian dinner with friends, it’s dark.

Our fourth and final day with the Hyundai ix35 Active is a mix of freeway and inner-city miles, as we catch up with friends and family both north and south of Perth proper.

Proving just as gutsy and dependable on long kilometre drives as shorter urban trips, the Hyundai’s naturally aspirated 2.0-litre is content cruising along at around 2000rpm at 100km/h, while still providing enough low-end poke to confidently overtake when required.

Teamed with an automatic transmission that can be a little slow to react to throttle inputs, the petrol engine can sound harsh and a bit thrashy when pushed north of 5000rpm and towards its 6500rpm redline, though really, the need to do this is rare. This is also indicated by our 9.3L/100km total trip average.

Although several variants of Hyundai’s baby SUV haven’t scored well in past technical reviews on the ride and handling fronts, over our 1315km exploration of WA, the ix35 Active did a commendable job of keeping us both comfortable and confident when behind the wheel.
Certainly a little crashy over poorer road surfaces, the suspension paired well enough with the standard 60-profile Kumho Solus tyres to deliver reasonable levels of entertainment when lovingly hustled through some of south WA’s best switchbacks.

Combining heavy weighting with little to no feedback, however, the ix35’s steering is not a strong point, with the only positive of its relatively dead steering being that the majority of road imperfections are not felt through the wheel.

Rear passenger space is a brighter note with a comfortable rear bench joined by loads of leg, head and shoulder room. Two adults can easily be accommodated on a long drive plus a third could be done with none too much trouble for shorter stints. Rear-riding folk also get a fold-down centre-seat armrest with two cup holders to share, though these miss out on the helpful ambient light encircling both front cup holders.

Feeling less thought through is the rear cargo blind storage system. Sitting raised on the boot floor when not in use – rather than beneath it as is the case in its larger Hyundai Santa Fe sibling – the placement is a bit naff but remains handy in a pinch.

And while the lady’s highlights included the 1680mm high (1650mm not including roof rails) Hyundai’s highway stability, on-road visibility and Bluetooth audio streaming, most punters would also be rapt with its maximum five-star ANCAP safety rating, five-year unlimited kilometre warranty and lifetime capped-price servicing. Hyundai also throws 12 months roadside assist and a complimentary first service (at 1500km) into the mix.

Car returned, we cab back to the airport and board our plane bound for Melbourne. For those playing at home, yet another WA wedding is planned for around late May — stay tuned…

Images by David Zalstein.


  • Lifestyle Rating -  8
  • Family Friendly - 7.5
  • Media & Connectivity - 8
  • Storage & Space - 7.5
  • Feel Good Factor - 8
  • Parking Prowess - 7.5

Now that you know what to expect from the Hyundai i35. Why not buy your own? If you find yourself in South Africa. See the Group 1 Hyundai site for Hyundai new car prices on all their vehicles or more specifically the Hyundai ix35 price.

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Monday, 7 December 2015

New Generation i20 Ushers in a Bright Hyundai Future

When the Hyundai i20 was first launched in South Africa it was not only an instant hit, but it literally forced the other car manufacturers in South Africa to acknowledge the new kid on the block. Now a few years down the line Hyundai has launched its New Generation i20 and thanks to its daring new design and advanced driving features Hyundai has shown the B-segment competition up all over again.
Looking Good and Driving Great
Just like the original Hyundai i20, this new generation i20 hatch has been designed by Hyundai's award winning European design team based in Rüsselsheim Germany. They have perfectly used the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design philosophy to create a breath-taking beauty that is ready to take on anything the South African roads can throw at it. Don’t believe us? Then take a look at these images below…

You can see for yourself that the Hyundai i20 New Generation has a much sportier look and thanks to a bigger airdam up front it literally looks like it is giving passers-by a cheeky grin as it wizzes past. At the rear the new boomerang-like taillights are also a style improvement and seem to add a little more sexiness that is usually only reserved for top level Italian cars.
The BIGGER New Generation Hyundai i20
Bigger most certainly means better in the new generation Hyundai i20 thanks to an increase in length of 45mm. This has added not only additional leg room, but also an improvement in the boot space to a very nifty 294-litres. The surprising thing here is however, despite being bigger than the previous generation of i20, this new generation i20 is lighter. Yes you read that correctly, thanks to an abundance of lightweight high-strength steel in the chassis Hyundai has managed to build a bigger car that weighs less but still provides improved torsional rigidity.
Smarter Interior and Lots of Next Generation 120 Features
There was very little wrong with the previous generation of i20’s interior, but this time around the Hyundai designers have excelled themselves. Take a look below to see what we mean…

More space, soft-touch plastics and more than a few style improvements have helped to make this one of the best looking vehicle on the inside in its class. In fact, many more expensive vehicles would be hard pressed to match the sheer good looks of this next generation i20 interior. But there is also more to this fabulous car than just good looks and comfort, it also comes standard with air conditioning, a CD/MP3/USB/Aux audio system, Bluetooth connectivity, remote central locking, front electric windows and electric exterior mirrors.
The New Generation i20 Price
At the time of going to press the new generation Hyundai i20 was available from Group 1 Hyundai, one of South Africa’s top automotive dealerships, at the following model specific new generation i20 price:

  • 2015 i20 1.2 Motion from R 195,900 or R 2,999pm*
  • 2015 i20 1.2 Fluid from R 206,400 or R 3,199pm*
  • 2015 i20 1.4 Fluid MT from R 219,400 or R 3,399pm*
  • 2015 i20 1.4 Fluid AT from R 229,400 or R 3,599pm*

*T&C’s Apply, Price Correct as at 05 November 2015

Friday, 4 December 2015

2016 Hyundai IX35 Review

The first model IX35 SUV began to be produced in 2004. The first generation was produced from 2004 to 2009 and the second from 2009 to June 2015. In America, the IX35 sold under the name Tucson. The second-generation IX35 model presented to the public in 2009 in Frankfurt. At this year’s Geneva Motor Show was presented the third generation of the compact SUV Tucson 2016, which will replace the current IX35. Current IX35 will cease to be produced in June this year. There is information that Tucson will start in autumn 2016, immediately after the Motor Show and will feature, for the first time, the name Tucson globally.

2016 Hyundai IX35 side

2016 Hyundai IX35 – Exterior

The new 2016 Hyundai IX35 – Tucson will receive modern redesign and striking appearance than its predecessor. The front end will undergo major changes. It is expected accentuated hexagonal radiator grille with vertical slats and raised a “nose”. The new lights will be “borrowed” from the Sonata and Genesis models. 2016 Hyundai IX35-Tucson will have LED daytime running lights and fog lights. At the rear end of the car will be located thinner tail lights, lower bumper and redesigned tailgate. The new SUV Hyundai Tucson 2016 will share a platform with several models such as Hyundai i30, Hyundai Elantra, Kia Sorento. The new 2016 Hyundai ix35 will not exceed 6.5 cm and 3 cm wider than the current model. Wheelbase will be increased by about 3 cm. The result of this increase will be more space in the interior. The two rows of seats will comfortably accommodate 5 passengers.

2016 Hyundai IX35 – Interior

2016 Hyundai IX35 interior

The interior will be significantly enhanced in comparison to the outgoing model. It will pleasantly surprise you with a premium look and premium feel, soft materials and optional “Red Wine” leather. Expect more room, a larger trunk, front seats with heating and ventilation. A number of keys that were located on the instrument panel have been replaced by large-screen multimedia system. Dynamics and car control will be improved. The new 2016 Hyundai IX35 – 2016 Hyundai Tucson will have a telescopic steering wheel, which helps to not jeopardize the ability of the driver, regardless of terrain in which to run. There will be 5 various equipment packages, but will further raise the price of the vehicle. For the safety of passengers and drivers will take care of numerous systems such as: system of automatic braking in the event of a collision, the system helps the driver to stay in lane in which it moves, the detector other vehicles that are in the blind spot, the Smart Parking Assist.

2016 Hyundai IX35 – Engines
The new 2016 Hyundai IX35 – Tucson will offer the European market a range of five engines. Market America will be offered only two engines. Tucson Euro 6 engines will feature lower fuel consumption and reduced emissions. Later versions are expected to fuel cell.
For the European market will be offered:

1) An aspirated 1.6 liter GDI petrol engine with 135 hp combined with a 6 – speed manual transmission.
2) Powerful turbo version of the engine of the same volume (1.6 liter) with 176 hp paired with an optional 7 – speed transmission with double clutch.
3) Diesel engine 1.7 liter CRDi with 115 hp and 6 – speed manual transmission.
4) Turbo diesel engine in two variants: 2.0 liter with 136 hp
5) 2.0 liter with 184 hp – a standard version with a 6-speed manual transmission or optional 7-speed transmission with double clutch.

For the US market are offered only two engines: a 2.0 liter and 2.4 liter GDI engine.
This year in March at the Geneva Motor Show Hyundai introduced the Tucson 48V Hybrid. The drive system consists of a diesel engine with 136 hp which is paired with a 6-speed manually scholars and an electric motor that produces 14 hp. The total combined strength will be 150 hp and 413 Nm of torque. Emissions reduced to 109 g / km. Hyundai presented and plug – in hybrid model consisting of 1.7 liter diesel engine with 115 hp, with a 7-speed dual clutch gearbox and an electric motor with 68 hp, which transmits power to the rear wheels resulting in a 4×4. The total combined power systems will amount to 183 hp and 474 Nm of torque. C02 emissions will amount to just 48g / km.

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