Hyundai has released the first sketch of its new European-market i30 hatchback, which will make its official debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. Like most modern Hyundai products, the i30 was styled with the company’s “fluidic sculpture” design language. But we’re curious: is this the next-generation Elantra Touring?
The new car is important because there is a small possibility it will be sold in the U.S. market. The current Hyundai i30 (which arrived at the 2007 Geneva Motor Show) is sold on our shores as the Hyundai Elantra Touring, so we have a strong suspicion that the new i30 will also arrive in American dealerships as a sibling to the current Elantra sedan.
Hyundai spokesman Miles Johnson pointed out that the current Elantra Touring arrived in America after the Elantra sedan was redesigned for 2008. The 2011 Elantra sedan was recently redesigned, so it seems like a safe bet that a new Elantra Touring could be on the way.
Based on that model cycle, “You would not be surprised if we saw something next year,” Johnson told us.
The i30 seen in this sketch wears the same hexagonal corporate grille seen on the Elantra and Accent. The headlights stretch onto the car’s front fenders, and a strong styling crease follows the front wheel arch before running the length of the car to the taillights. We’d tend to agree with Hyundai’s assertions that the car has a “bold stance” and “dynamic proportions.” The new i30 looks significantly more mature and more upscale than its predecessor.
For now, we don’t know much else about the new i30. Look for more information once the car makes its official debut at next month’s Frankfurt Motor Show.