Hyundai and Kia commit to diesel powertrains

16 May 2018

16 May 2018

Despite declining diesel sales, Hyundai has announced that it will be converting all its engines, including oil burners, to the Euro 6d-TEMP regulations by September this year.

The move will see the Korean company offer the cleanest standard engines across its entire range two years ahead of schedule. It also means the company may have an opportunity for its vehicles to avoid diesel engine bans in cities, which could be introduced in a number of cities in Germany. It also highlights the company’s commitment to diesel engines.

Euro 6d-TEMP is an engine standard brought in for manufacturers following the introduction of the real-world driving experience (RDE) section of the WLTP emissions test. This is being introduced in two steps, with the first applying until September 2020. In this, a nitrogen oxide (NOx) conformity factor of 2.1 will apply meaning that NOx emissions in the RDE1 test can be up to 2.1 times the Euro 6 laboratory limit of 80mg/km. For RDE2, the NOx conformity factor is 1.0 but with an error margin of 0.5 meaning that NOx emissions in the RDE2 test can be up to 1.5 times the Euro 6 laboratory limit of 80mg/km. From this period, after September 2020, engines will be passed as Euro 6d.

To meet the requirements, Hyundai will be adding a petrol particulate filter to its models together with an optimised intake manifold injection system. Diesel engines receive a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system which will work with the diesel particulate filter (DPF) and an oxidation catalyst.

In addition to the conversion of the complete range of engines to comply with Euro 6d-Temp standard, Hyundai will continue to expand its range of environmentally friendly vehicles. This year, the company is planning to introduce its second hydrogen fuel cell vehicle (FCV), the Nexo. Also, the first electric SUV for a wide range of customers, the Kona electric will hit the roads. It is also said that by 2020 the company plans to launch 15 models with alternative drive systems on the world market.

Hyundai stablemate Kia will launch its first diesel mild hybrid later this year. The new drive system, called EcoDynamic +, will first be seen in the Kia Sportage SUV in Q3 this year and will make it to the Cee’d model in 2019.

Kia’s mild-hybrid technology features a compact 0.46 kWh 48-volt lithium-ion battery and a new Mild-Hybrid Starter-Generator (MHSG). By electronically controlling the MHSG using the inverter, the system switches seamlessly between two modes: ′motor’ and ′generator’. Connected by a belt to the diesel engine’s crankshaft, under acceleration the MHSG provides up to 10kW of electric power assistance to the powertrain in ′motor’ mode, reducing engine load and emissions.