Seoul, South Korea – Hyundai has unveiled its first plug-in hybrid electric vehicle concept car at the Seoul Motor Show. Named Blue-Will, the vehicle promises an electric-only driving distance of up to 64 km on a single charge, and a fuel economy rating of up to 2.2 L/100 km.
Blue-Will is the fourth in a series of innovative concept vehicles from the Namyang Design Center, currently headed by Oh Suk-Geun, executive vice-president of design. “The innovative form language gives perfect expression to the advanced eco-friendly technologies found on Blue-Will,” Oh said. “At a time of rising concern about the environment and our energy future, Blue-Will demonstrates to eco-conscious car buyers everywhere that Hyundai has practical hybrid solutions that will appear on the next generation of vehicles.”
The Blue-Will concept uses an all-aluminum, 152-horsepower gasoline direct-injected 1.6-litre engine, coupled to a continously variable transmission and 100 kW motor, which is the heart of Hyundai’s proprietary parallel hybrid drive architecture. The fuel tank is under the rear seat for improved luggage space, alongside a lithium ion polymer battery which can be recharged using household current. The car can drive on the gasoline engine, the electric motor, or both as conditions demand.
This parallel hybrid drive architecture will be the foundation for future Hyundai hybrids, starting with the next-generation Sonata in the U.S. Hyundai said it will become the first automaker in the world to apply lithium ion polymer in a mass-production vehicle this July, when the Elantra LPI Hybrid Electric Vehicle goes on sale in Korea.
The Blue-Will also contains a panoramic roof with dye-sensitized solar cells that do not impede visibility. The cells provide a trickle charge that helps operate a cabin cooling fan, reducing interior temperatures when the car is parked in the sun. Energy from hot exhaust gases is captured by a thermal generator fitted to the exhaust manifold, which converts the heat into electrical energy to help power auxiliary systems.