Hyundai 45 EV concept for Frankfurt show to highlight new design language

Hyundai announced last week that it will show a concept car “envisioning its future EV design direction” at next month’s Frankfurt auto show. And now today the brand added that it will step into that future while looking back at the past—to the brand’s first model from the 1970s, 45 years on.

The automaker calls the upcoming concept “a symbolic milestone for Hyundai’s future EV design,” and says it will follow a “Sensuous Sportiness” design language, with the sensuous portion of it standing for “enhanced emotional values that customers can experience through design.” A new teaser photo shows taillights that might hark back to some of the earliest concepts for the brand’s rear-wheel-drive Pony.

Hyundai EV concept teased for Frankfurt auto show

Hyundai EV concept teased for Frankfurt auto show

Last week the company said that the EV concept will follow a “Style Set Free” theme that extends an array of customization possibilities. Hyundai first presented ideas with the new theme earlier this year at CES in Las Vegas and at Milan Design Week, but this is where it comes together in a full concept car. 

Hyundai Set Style Free theme at CES 2019

Hyundai Set Style Free theme at CES 2019

The concept will likely hint at the future direction of one of the first production vehicles on Hyundai’s upcoming dedicated EV platform, called E-GMP. Due in 2021, the platform will be the result of a 2017 pivot away from its long-driving-range compliance-car formula to long-range, more premium EVs and will use what Hyundai claims is the world’s first integrated drive axle technology that combines the driveshaft and wheel bearings. 

Hyundai Wia, which developed the system, claims that the system’s larger wheel bearings and improved stiffness will reduce noise and vibration, tighten the turning radius, and improve steering performance.

Integrated Drive Axle - Hyundai Wia

Integrated Drive Axle – Hyundai Wia

Some of the new interior design language will be communicated in a series of interactive displays at Frankfurt. And on the outside, if the silhouette of the covered car in the teaser picture is any indication, long, low, and sleek will be the operative words. 

“With the first full electrified concept integrating Style Set Free, as well as our first ever electrified race car, we are proud that Hyundai is once again showing a glimpse into the future of driving, while other manufacturers are still talking about it,” said Andreas-Christoph Hofmann, Hyundai Motor Europe VP for marketing and product, in a release.

At Frankfurt, Hyundai is also due to reveal an all-new version of its on-a-budget i10 city car, which has been aimed primarily at emerging markets like India. 

This story has been updated to reflect a new teaser photo from Hyundai and introduce the idea that it’s retro-themed.

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