In a government-issued report today, Hyundai Motor America was named number one in fuel economy and CO2 emissions in America by topping the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) fuel economy rankings for the 2010 model year, beating out traditional leaders Honda and Toyota. No make scored higher than Hyundai. This is the second time Hyundai has led in both categories, having achieved this distinction previously for the 2008 model year.

The EPA 2011 Light-Duty Automotive Technology and Fuel Economy Trends Report identified Hyundai as the top 2010 brand with an adjusted[1] fuel economy rating of 27.0 miles per gallon. In addition to being named the most fuel efficient brand, Hyundai also had the lowest fleet-wide adjusted composite CO2 emissions performance (329 g/mi) for the 2010 model year.

The EPA 2011 Trends Report also indicates that preliminary 2011 model year values suggest that Hyundai will maintain its fuel economy leadership. Forecasts show that Hyundai will achieve an adjusted fuel economy rating of 27.5 miles per gallon in the 2011 model year.

With a strong offering of fuel efficient models, including Elantra, Sonata Hybrid, Accent and Veloster M/T all achieving estimated 40 mpg highway fuel economy ratings, Hyundai continues to set the industry bar in fuel efficiency. In 2011, Hyundai achieved a corporate average fuel economy level of 36.1 mpg and sold 214,132 40 mpg vehicles, representing one-third of total sales.

“The 2011 EPA data demonstrates Hyundai’s commitment to fuel economy leadership and validates the effectiveness of our Blue Drive strategy,” said John Krafcik, Hyundai Motor America president and CEO. “We are committed to developing a suite of smart fuel-efficient strategies – from hybrids to new solutions in high-technology gasoline vehicles. Gas prices are expected to hit record highs this summer and consumers are looking for ways to cut back on fuel costs with cars that offer improved fuel economy. Through innovations such as light-weight steel, direct injection technology, turbocharging and advanced transmissions we are able to improve the efficiency and performance of all our vehicles, allowing us to achieve best-in-class fuel economy and emissions levels for the Hyundai brand.”

Environmental Protection Agency Fuel Economy Report

*From EPA Light-Duty Automotive Technology, Carbon Dioxide Emissions and Fuel Economy Trends Report (Highlight #4, page vii)
**Adjusted CO2 emissions and fuel economy values are shown for the 13 highest-selling manufacturers, which accounted for 99 percent of the market in MY 2010, in order from lowest to highest CO2 emissions for MY 2010.

***MY2010 data is final, while projections for the MY2011 are uncertain and EPA will not have final data for the 2011 model year until next year’s report.

Hyundai’s Fuel Economy Commitment

In 2010, Hyundai announced plans to maintain its fuel economy leadership and achieve a corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) rating of at least 50 miles per gallon (mpg) by 2025 for its lineup of passenger cars and light duty trucks. Current National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) regulations require automakers to achieve a CAFE rating of 35.5 mpg by 2016. Before those rules were enacted in 2009, Hyundai had already announced its own plan to reach 35 mpg by 2015.

Hyundai’s plan to achieve an average of at least 50 mpg or better encompasses a full line of products, from small cars to larger family haulers. It leverages Hyundai’s global Blue Drive strategy, aligning RD resources at its engineering centers in California, Michigan, Korea, India and Germany to develop more fuel-efficient vehicle technologies.

Fuel-Efficient Solutions

Hyundai is currently the only manufacturer with four models achieving 40 mpg ratings on the highway – Accent, M/T Veloster, Sonata Hybrid and the recently named North American Car of the Year, 2011 Elantra. Powered by an all-new 1.8-liter Nu four-cylinder engine weighing 74 pounds less than the previous generation and an all-new six-speed transmission, Elantra achieves a 29 mpg city and 40 mpg highway fuel economy rating – a highway-only driving range of up to 500 miles. Thanks to advanced clean engine technology, most Elantras sold in California, Oregon and several Northeast states are certified as Partial Zero Emission Vehicles (PZEV) by the EPA. The PZEV Elantra is as clean as many hybrid electric vehicles. The PZEV Elantra helps Hyundai meet its environmental commitments. Outside of these “green” states, the Elantra is available as an Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV).

In 2010, Hyundai launched its first gas-electric full hybrid, the Sonata Hybrid. The Sonata Hybrid features Hyundai’s proprietary parallel hybrid drive system which pairs the already fuel efficient 2.4-liter Theta II engine to a six-speed automatic transmission and a 30kW electric motor for maximum fuel economy. In addition, Sonata Hybrid uses the industry’s first lithium polymer battery, leapfrogging in-market nickel-metal hydride and lithium-ion applications.

[1] Fuel economy label values based on EPA’s 5-cycle test methodology (which represent city, highway, high speed/high acceleration, high temperature/air conditioning, and cold temperature driving) that was firstimplemented in MY 2008.

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