The third-generation Hyundai i20 will finally arrive in India on November 5, 2020. The car is the Korean auto giant's ninth and final launch of the year in the country and will be competing in the high volumes premium hatchback segment. The new-generation model will also see a major upgrade in terms of design, technology, engines, features and even the manufacturing process. With Hyundai India moving to the Industry 4.0 systems for producing cars at its Chennai plant, the automaker will not only produce the new-generation i20 for India but several global markets as well, much like the outgoing version.
WATCH: 2020 Hyundai i20 First Look
In fact, about 20-30 per cent of the production for the Hyundai i20 is for the export markets, and that will be the case for the new generation too. The Hyundai plant near Chennai has already commenced production for the markets overseas with both the left-hand-drive and right-hand-drive versions of the car rolling off the same assembly line.
Elaborating on the same, Ganesh Mani, Director - Production at Hyundai Motor India told carandbike, "One of the most important models apart from the Venue, Creta and Verna, is also i20. The i20 has always been clocking about 20-30 per cent of the production volumes [for exports]. We have already started making for them [exports] because there is no difference between domestic and export. It is just a matter of introduction of a small change. That's the only what we need to do. And the learnings from the domestic market is making it easier to implement in exports. And we are geared up to supply majorly to South Africa, Middle East, Mexican, and South American countries and will continue to focus on that." Mani was speaking on the latest episode of Freewheeling with SVP. You can checkout the complete conversation below.
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Hyundai is the India's largest car exporter and the i20 was always a global product to come out of the brand's stable. In fact, the second-generation i20 made its global debut in India in August 2014 before the European premiere at the Paris Motor Show in October that same year. However, it is to be noted while the India plant caters to the demands of new and emerging markets overseas, the new i20 for Europe is produced at the brand's manufacturing facility in Izmit, Turkey,
Speaking further, Mani said, "The new i20 along with the Venue and Creta is going to be a real iconic product from India 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat' perspective. We hope the numbers will increase and we are also preparing for production capacity enhancement of this product as the export market continues to ramp up the sales."
The new Hyundai i20 uses nearly 15 per cent more advanced high strength steel as compared to the previous generation model. This takes the total advanced high strength steel utilised in the construction to 66 per cent. As a result, the new i20 is now safer than its predecessor by nearly 13 per cent on the crashability index.
The Hyundai Chennai plant has a production capacity of 7.5 lakh units per annum. Mani says the plant is flexible to produce multiple cars to meet the demand, which remains a key point with multiple high volumes products in the company's portfolio. The plant can also make eight different models in eight different combinations. Since the first generation arrived in 2008, Hyundai has manufactured over 1.6 million i20 hatchbacks in India, out of which 1.1 million units were for the domestic market.