Kia has revealed the powertrain technology that’s set to sit underneath Kia’s range of cars in the near future, including a mild hybrid system and new dual-clutch gearbox.
The announcement was made at the Geneva Motor Show, with Kia claiming that the hybrid technology could reduce petrol and diesel emissions by up to 15 per cent in its next-generation models. The engine is paired up to a lead-carbon battery and small electric motor.
Buyers will be able to drive in electric-only mode at low speeds and for short distances, with the battery recharging as the car slows down. There’s a clever stop-start system fitted, too, which Kia claims allows the car to restart “with almost no noise or vibration.”
As well as reducing emissions, the battery is also used to power an electric supercharger, to increase torque at low revs. In future, Kia sees this filling in the turbo lag that drivers experience before the turbos kick in further up the rev range. There’s the option of fitting the hybrid system without the supercharger, too, but with it Kia believes power should be up by around 20 per cent.
Meanwhile, the new dual-clutch transmission becomes Kia’s first seven-speed unit, replacing the old six-speed auto. Engineers were aiming to improve fuel efficiency by 7 per cent and boost the 0-62mph time by five per cent. The first new cars fitted with the seven-speed DCT will arrive in 2015.