More news on the Hyundai bakkie story out of Australia. As previously reported, “a Ute had better be a Ute.” The new rough and tough ladder framed double-cab bakkie will have the option of a straight-six turbodiesel engine.
This engine will most likely be the same one used in the new Genesis GV80 luxury SUV. Genesis is Hyundai’s luxury brand, much like Lexus and Toyota. The GV80 competes in the same space as the Range Rover Sport, BMW X%, Merc GLE and Lexus RX.
In the GV80, the 3.0-litre straight-six gives a solid 205kW and 588Nm, the kind of power and torque that will easily compete with Amarok, Ranger and HiLux.
According to Albert Biermann, Hyundai’s head of research and development, this engine will be perfect for a workhorse bakkie. The choice of a straight-six rather than a V6 was easy: “It makes the smoothest power. It’s very smooth. The vibrations are less.
“With this engine, we can have so many applications. As you know, we make commercial vehicles and so on, so this engine will be out there for quite some time. You don’t need to worry about that engine.”
The architecture that underpins this engine gives the choice of rear- or all-wheel drive. Power is shifted through a new eight-speed automatic transmission. The bakkie platform is flexible enough to accommodate a hybrid – diesel or petrol.
Speaking of petrol, there are also rumours that the new Aussie Ute could offer the petrol engines that power the GV80, including a 2.5-litre turbo four-cylinder giving 226kW, or the massive 3.5-litre twin-turbo V6 with 283kW/529Nm. The latter will take Hyundai Ute straight into Ranger Raptor territory.
This new bakkie is expected in 2023. The bakkie, or Ute, market in Australia is massive, with sales at 210 000 units per year. The HiLux and the Ranger dominate with sales of 51 000 and 42 000 respectively.
Will we ever get this Aussie bakkie here? Well, it will be a right-hand drive and South Africa is very much bakkie country. We don’t know yet, but as soon as we do, it will be on our blog.