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Hyundai develops long-life 4-cylinder engine
Powertrain also will be used by Chrysler

By Rick Kranz
Automotive News / May 10, 2004

Designed in Korea

Highlights of the 4-cylinder engine family
Assembly sites: 5 factories; Korea, Japan, United States
Global annual production target: 2 million-2.5 million
Features: Aluminum head, block; plastic intake manifold, head cover; maintenance-free timing chain; variable valve timing; balance shaft

GYUNGGI-DO, Korea - A high-tech engine family with a planned 300,000-mile life span will replace nearly all four-cylinder engines at the Chrysler group, Hyundai Motor Co. and Mitsubishi Motors Corp.

Developed by Hyundai, the engine family has three displacements, 1.8, 2.0 and 2.4 liters. Turbocharged versions also will be available, along with a liquid-propane version that at least Hyundai will offer. All versions will be equipped with variable valve timing to improve fuel economy and reduce emissions. North American production begins next year in Dundee, Mich.

The new engines will make the Chrysler group's small cars and some other vehicles more fun to drive, providing more horsepower and torque than the Chrysler group's current four-cylinder, which is 11 years old.

Ironically, details of the engine family are emerging as the partnership that made it possible - involving DaimlerChrysler AG, Hyundai and Mitsubishi - is falling apart.

Long life span

Hyundai engineers set a target of 300,000 miles without a major failure, twice the Big 3 target for most engines. But the 300,000-mile target will not be reached for three or four years, says Lee Hyun Soon, Hyundai senior executive vice president for powertrains.

"Some of the component suppliers will not be meeting the target" when Hyundai begins assembly of the engines this year in Korea, Lee says. Some suppliers will require as many as four years to upgrade their plants to meet the higher quality targets.

Hyundai's previous four-cylinder engine had a 180,000-mile target, Lee says. He was interviewed at a Hyundai press event in Gyunggi-Do, Korea, two weeks ago.

Lee says by the time each supplier reaches the quality targets, combined worldwide engine production by the three automakers is expected to reach 2.5 million annually.

Lee says Hyundai reached the 300,000-mile goal by aiming for "tighter quality control, tighter tolerances. Usually we can do that, but it pushes up the costs. But now we have volume to cut costs so we can give (higher specifications) to the supplier."

Lee, a Korean, received master's and doctorate degrees from the State University of New York and worked on advanced engine research for General Motors. He joined Hyundai in 1984.

Hyundai in charge

Lee says the three automakers will assemble the same engines using the same basic components. Some suppliers will differ because of logistical costs, Lee says.

"We control all of the engineering specs," Lee says. "Neither Mitsubishi nor Chrysler can change that because we would like to keep commonality so we can share components."

Chrysler's newest engines are engineered for 150,000 miles without a major failure, says Bruce Coventry, president of Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance in Dundee, Mich. The alliance is the joint venture formed by DaimlerChrysler, Hyundai and Mitsubishi to produce the engines.

The alliance will continue even though DaimlerChrysler decided last month not to provide a multibillion-dollar cash infusion to Mitsubishi. DaimlerChrysler also plans to sell its 10.5 percent stake in Hyundai.

Coventry would not provide a mileage target for the engines.

The engines will be used in Chrysler group vehicles such as the next-generation Dodge Neon and Stratus and eventually in the automaker's minivans and low-end Jeeps. They also will be used in Mitsubishi vehicles.

The Dundee site will have two engine assembly plants, capable of producing a combined total of 840,000 engines. The first Dundee engine plant will open in June 2005. The second will follow in 2006.

Hyundai in Korea will begin engine production this year. Kia Motors Corp., owned by Hyundai, is building another plant for the engines in Korea, and Mitsubishi is constructing a plant in Japan.


So, some good up to date news about what I've (we've) been following for a while now. Good stuff.

Thanks for the original post over at HP.

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Premium Member
15,223 Posts
I like the part that says some will be turbocharged :)

1,361 Posts
I like the part that says the Beta is good for 180K I believe that but the trans is only good for 90k:)

1,078 Posts
hyunelan2 \
I like the part that says some will be turbocharged
And Hyundai never said they would use those :tongue:

As of now Hyundai Korea hasn't mentione using the turbo in any vehicles they sell/make. Think Evo 9 using the Theta ;) (mitsu)
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