Hyundai has just unveiled its first electric car, but is apparently ready to leave behind internal combustion engines. As Electrek reports, Korea Economic Daily sources claim that Hyundai closed the engine design unit at its research center sometime this month. There will still be some workers who will improve the existing engines, but the rest will move on to the work related to EV.
It is believed that the company is simultaneously converting buildings for EV development. The propulsion unit development center is becoming an electrification testing facility, and the performance development center is now dedicated to electrified machines. There is also a new battery development center, while researchers are now procuring raw batteries and chip components.
The goal is simple, according to the leak. Hyundai wants to accelerate the transition to EV, which means devoting much more of its energy to newer technology. Electrification is “inevitable,” new research chief Park Chung-kook reportedly said in an e-mail, and the transition will help produce cars that “dominate the future market.”
We asked Hyundai for comment. Changing priorities would at least make sense. Many countries and individual states intend to ban the sale of internal combustion cars in the 2030s. Hyundai’s house in South Korea, for example, has a climate plan that would ban sales only with internal combustion until 2030 and all sales of internal combustion vehicles until 2035. Hyundai is already phasing out diesels. It would not make much sense to design new engines that would only have a short time on the market, and the company is likely to significantly expand its line of electric vehicles long before any government break.
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