Korean car-maker Hyundai Motor Group is planning to spend $7.7bn this year on building new electric vehicle factories, with millions earmarked for new plants in North America, Brazil and India.
Hyundai’s "Strategy 2025" would see $53bn invested over the next five years to try and make it a global leader in the supply of next-generation transport.
The lion’s share of the 2021 investment, $5.2bn, will go on factories in the domestic market, but $265m will be spent in North America, $195m in Brazil and $176m in India.
The push to expand its electric vehicle production began last year, when it budgeted $7bn for plants, a rise of 40% on the previous year.
This was accompanied by a $4.2bn investment in R&D, aimed at "smart mobility solutions" – industry jargon for autonomous vehicles. Starting from 2022, Hyundai plans to offer models equipped with level 3 autonomous driving technology, meaning the car can drive itself, but the driver must be poised to take over if the situation requires it.
It is also investing areas such as the "hydrogen eco-system", where Korea is emerging as a global pace setter. A recent report by the Intralink consultancy predicted that the hydrogen market will increase from $12.6bn in 2020 to $24bn by 2030.
As well as land transport, Hyundai plans to introduce a cargo-carrying unmanned aircraft system with a hybrid powertrain in 2026, and launch an all-electric version to carry goods between cities in 2028. In the 2030s, the company plans to launch intercity passenger services.
Image: Hyundai’s plans are based on the E-GMP platform, unveiled in December (Hyundai Motor Group)