Fleet managers will soon have KIA as an option.

Fleet managers will soon have KIA as an option.

Photo: Hyundai Motor Group

Hyundai Motor Group announced today a massive global strategy to transform all vehicles to Software-defined Vehicles (SDVs) by 2025.

During Hyundai's Unlock The Software global presentation, the manufacturer announced SDVs will ensure vehicles remain constantly updated through the vehicle lifecycle. As part of this 18 trillion won ($12.6 billion) development, two new scalable platforms will be developed. The eM platform will be for passenger cars and promises a 50% uplift in driving range on a single charge compared with current brand EVs.

The other eS platform will be developed for what Hyundai Motor Group calls Purpose-built Vehicles specifically for business use. This will include electric commercial vehicles and sees Hyundai entering the commercial vehicle market again following its i800-based iLoad panel van.

KIA is committed to changing how its vehicles are updated and maintained, fully committing to...

KIA is committed to changing how its vehicles are updated and maintained, fully committing to over-the-air (OTA) updates instead of having to visit a dealer.

Photo: Hyundai Motor U.K.

A KIA executive in the U.K. confirmed to Global Fleet Management that it would mean KIA-branded eLCVs will enter the market alongside Hyundai eLCV versions. It will be the first time that fleet operators will have the choice of a KIA commercial vehicle, although there is currently an e-Niro Plus commercial operating in Korea.

“By transforming all vehicles to Software Defined Vehicles by 2025, Hyundai Motor Group will completely redefine the concept of the automobile and take the lead in ushering in a never-before-experienced era of mobility,” said Chung Kook Park, president and head of R&D division, Hyundai Motor Group.

“Creating visionary vehicles empowered with the ability to evolve through software will enable customers to keep their vehicles up to date with the latest features and technology long after they have left the factory.”

Key to the Software-defined Vehicles will be the introduction of Over The Air (OTA) updates which will be delivered needing to visit a dealer. The first vehicles to benefit from OTA updates will be available from 2023 and will include ICE models as well as EVs. Hyundai Motor Group added that by 2025 all vehicles would be software-defined.

KIA U.K. spokesperson Daniel Sayles added: “The first KIA we’ll see that will feature OTAs will be the EV9, an electric SUV, which launches in the U.K. in 2023. While it won’t feature all the new technology it will have double the range of existing EVs.

“Fleets will benefit from being able to monitor and manage cars more effectively while adding greater personalisation. The greater range from batteries on a single charge will also be hugely beneficial to fleet drivers.”

The Group said that it planned to transform the customer experience throughout a vehicle’s lifetime while delivering a new era of mobility thanks to constantly evolving software technology.

It added that 20 million vehicles were expected to be registered to the Group’s Connected Car Services (CCS) worldwide by 2025 while a new Group-developed Connected Car Operating System (ccOS) would offer customers personalized services and 'blazing' data speeds.

Kook Park added:

“Today, Hyundai Motor Group has revealed the technology concepts, strategies, and future scenarios related to software-defined vehicles that will underpin the core of future mobility.

“Our holistic approach will empower Hyundai Motor Group to lead the transformation in the mobility paradigm. As we take these technological innovations from imagination to reality, Hyundai Motor Group will unlock the future potential of the car and open up new possibilities to rewrite the customer experience.”

Further Reading: Kia Debuts 2023 Soul