Things are shaping out pretty well for Korean automaker Hyundai. After introducing its first engine about seventeen years ago, Hyundai now makes a variety of 4-clyinders, 6-cylinders, all the up to the Tau V8 that it will offer as an option on new Hyundai Genesis sedan.
Until 1991, Hyundai relied on Mitsubishi for engine technology, now, according to Dr. Hyun-Soon Lee, President of the R&D and Corporate Product Planning of Hyundai-Kia Motors, the automaker can build anything it wants.
“We could build a 600-horsepower supercar, or we could build a $2000 people’s car. But the car we have always wanted to build is the one you drove today [the Genesis],” said Lee at the recent launch of the Genesis sedan in Korea.
The tables seemed to have turned since Hyundai now provides technology for the 2.0L and 2.4L Theta engine for both Mitsubishi and Chrysler. The Korean automaker has produced about 1.9 million of them in 2007.
Mercedes-Benz is also showing interest in Hyundai’s engine technology. At the Beijing Motor Show this year, Lee recalled, Daimler boss Dieter Zetsche said that he would like to partner with Hyundai for four-cylinder engines.
But nothing is official yet, and Hyundai doesn’t seem too interested as Dr. Lee said “I am not sure we want to share our technology.”
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