A report out of South Korea has confirmed that Hyundai will be stopping development on internal combustion engine development and pivot entirely into electric technology for its vehicles.
The Korea Economic Daily reports that Hyundai’s new head of R&D, Park Chung-kook, sent an email to employees about the change. “Researchers at the engine design unit have moved to the electrification design center, leaving only some to modify existing engines,” he said in the email. “The powertrain system development center is transforming into an electrification test center, while the powertrain performance development center is becoming an electrification performance development center.
“The immediate task is to develop innovative vehicles that can dominate the future market,” he continued. “This reorganization will be an important starting point for change ahead in the new year.”
Hyundai is said to have around 12,000 people working on engine development at the R&D headquarters in Namyang, South Korea; these employees will be transferred to EV development instead. Workers at the battery design and development department will also move under this new EV umbrella.
Hyundai has just released the Ioniq 5 crossover, and it also has the Ioniq sedan and the Kona EV crossover in its stable, along with some hybrid versions of its other vehicles. Its sister company, Kia, has the Soul and Niro EVs, as well as some hybrid models. Both companies have proclaimed they plan to build 1.7 million EVs combined by 2026.