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Car news, 5 July ’24: Facelifted Hyundai i30 to get mild-hybrid tech, SA Government will require licences to drive ultra-powerful vehicles, and more


Every important car news story breaking today, one convenient read

Thanks for joining us this Friday July 5th 2024. Notably in car news today: Hyundai will soon bring a mild-hybrid i30 hatch to Australia, and the South Australian Government will make owners of ultra-performance vehicles sit a new driving course.

Browse this issue:

Hyundai i30 hatch to gain a mild-hybrid system for second facelift

2025 Hyundai i30 rear 3/4
The 2025 Hyundai i30 will be available with a mild-hybrid engine
  • Hyundai Australia is set to introduce a mild-hybrid version of its popular i30 hatch, according to documents released by the Department of Infrastructure. 
  • But the mild-hybrid is only likely to feature in the N-Line variant at this stage, with a base engine yet to be confirmed. The 2.0-litre engine with 120kW/203Nm is likely to continue.
  • For the N-Line, the i30 will gain 48-volt electric assistance and a new 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol four-cylinder engine mated with an electric starter generator. 
  • This engine produces 117kW of power, which is 33kW less than the outgoing N-Line’s 1.6-litre turbo-petrol 150kW engine. 
  • Upcoming i30s for Australia will be built in the Czech Republic, rather than South Korea, which, in turn, will likely mean price rises for this update. 

South Australia announces new licence test for ultra-high powered cars

2024 Lamborghini Huracan Sterrato front 3/4
Drivers of ultra-high performance cars will need a licence to drive from December
  • The South Australian Government will bring in a new U licence type for ultra high performance vehicles (UHPV) from December 1st, 2024. 
  • The SA Government defines a UHPV “as any vehicle, other than a bus, motor bike or motor trike, with a gross vehicle mass of up to 4.5 tonnes, that has a power to weight ratio of 276 kilowatts per tonne or more”. 
  • Owners of UHPVs will be required to do an online interactive course to obtain their U type licence.  
  • The law has come into force after the death of Sophia Naismith who was killed by an out-of-control Lamborghini Huracan

Geely’s first electric ute, the Riddara RD6, could come to Oz

Riddara RD6 ute
The relatively-unknown Riddara RD6 ute
  • Geely Holding, the Chinese automaker known for its subsidiaries including Polestar and Zeekr,  is building a full-electric ute under its Radar/Riddara brand
  • The RD6 ute, which will have the choice of either a 63kWh or 83kWh battery, will have a range of at least 500km. 
  • Unfortunately, the RD6 is only rear-wheel drive. It’ll use a single electric motor on the rear axle that produces 200kW/385Nm. The Riddara brand states that its RD6 ute will be able to tow up to 2500kg.
  • Riddara has confirmed that the RD6 ute will have 20 percent lower centre of gravity, multi-link independent rear suspension and “impressive ground clearance”. 
  • A four-wheel drive Riddara Horizon has also been unveiled. Australian timing is unclear, however with Zeekr now confirmed for Australia, anything is possible. 

Ferrari to offer battery warranty subscription service, but it’s not cheap 

Ferrari GTS duo front and back
Ferrari is offering expensive battery warranty extensions
  • Ferrari has announced it will offer extended warranties for its plug-in hybrid performance models, including the SF90 and the 296 GTB and GTS models. 
  • While Ferrari already offers a five-year hybrid warranty, with the Warranty Extension Hybrid programme, if owners choose to extend the warranty up to the eighth year, Ferrari will replace the high-voltage battery pack (HVB) at no extra cost.
  • The new Power Hybrid subscription allows customers to, in Ferrari’s words, “extend the factory warranty on all major powertrain components, including those related to the hybrid system, from year 8 to year 16, and again foresees the replacement, at no extra cost, of the high-voltage battery pack (HVB) in year 16”. 
  • But the service won’t come cheap. Although Australian pricing hasn’t been released, overseas reports from Bloomberg indicate that the subscription battery service could cost as much as USD$7500 per year, or the equivalent of AUD$11,250. 

Polestar 4 long range dual-motor 2024 reviewed

Polestar 4 2024 thumbnail
Tom Baker reviewed the Polestar 4 this week
  • Chasing Cars founder Tom Baker’s review of the 2024 Polestar 4 long-range dual-motor was published, including his thoughts on Polestar’s first car on an entirely new platform.
  • Reviewer Baker thought that the Polestar 4 had plenty of performance in all-wheel drive guise, had an elegant cabin and was spacious and well packaged.
  • Some of the not-so-good elements of the new Polestar 4 were the annoying lack of a rear window, a mute chassis and absent steering feel.
  • Baker concluded his review by saying that unlike the Polestar 3, the Polestar 4 isn’t there yet and needs some work if it’s going to go up against the upcoming Porsche Macan EV.

Watch: Link to video review

The next issue of Car News Today will be published on Monday 8th July at 4.30pm Sydney time.

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