Hyundai Motor America was named "OEM of the Year" and earned two of the ten coveted spots in the 2021 Wards 10 Best Engines and Propulsion Systems competition during this year’s Informa Tech Automotive Group’s Automotive Tech Week. Hyundai’s all-new Smartstream 2.5L turbocharged GDI engine found in the 2021 Santa Fe, and for a third consecutive year the Kona Electric powertrain were named to the prestigious list.
The Wards 10 Best Engines & Propulsion Systems recognize compelling powertrain advancements that are all-new, or significantly improved. Hyundai has earned fourteen Wards 10 Best Engines & Propulsion Systems recognitions since the awards’ annual inception in 1995.
“We are at a tipping-point in our industry in many regards, but specifically in the automotive powertrain world,” said Byungho Lee, director, propulsion systems, Hyundai Kia America Technical Center Inc. “We are very pleased to be the recipient of Informa Tech Automotive Group’s OEM of the Year and once again be recognized in Wards 10 Best Engines and Propulsion Systems list; these accolades reinforce Hyundai’s leadership in global powertrain advancements towards eco-friendly mobility.”
According to Jim Irwin, editor at WardsAuto, “Impressing us with its quickness, refinement, and overall value equation is the 281-hp 2.5L turbocharged 4-cylinder in the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe.”
Judge Drew Winter added, “I found this shockingly peppy for a middle-of-the road CUV, especially in sport mode. No wonder, it got 50 more horsepower than the last time I drove it. In a segment that leans heavily on practicality and similar specs, this engine helps the Santa Fe standout in the crowd.”
According to Christie Schweinsberg, Wards editor, “The South Korean automaker’s 3-year-old battery-electric crossover still is a standout in terms of performance, range, and price. The Hyundai model still has one of the longest ranges of any all-electric vehicle on sale in the U.S. with its EPA-estimated 258 miles (415 km) of range on a fully charged battery.” She further commented, “Also unlike some other BEVs, the Kona’s range is wonderfully sticky because of its great regen capability, with yours truly adding 1-to-4 miles (1.6-6.4 km) at various points in my drive.”
Rounding out the Automotive Tech Week event that took place November 15-19, 2021, in Novi, Michigan, the 2021 North American Car of the Year, Hyundai Elantra earned a spot in the Wards 10 Best UX competition, while the all-new Tucson was named to the Wards 10 Best Interiors list. The recognitions highlight Hyundai’s customer-centric product lineup and technology innovations.
According to Tom Murphy, lead editor and judge at Wards, “The redesigned Elantra delivers a remarkable array of driver-assistance and infotainment offerings, and its low price makes for a joyous, money-saving user experience at your neighborhood Hyundai dealership.”
“Dramatic curves, little touches, daring lines, eye-catching materials and a dose of user-friendly technology add up to a Wards 10 Best Interiors win for the Hyundai Tucson midsize CUV,” said Dave Zoia, editor and judge at Wards. He added, “Simply put, the Hyundai Tucson checks all the boxes and then some. It’s a stylish, well-put-together midsize CUV that offers plenty of features and comfort at an attractive price, and then goes that extra step.”