Ad closing in seconds...

Kia’s mild-hybrid diesel to debut in the Sportage

  • EcoDynamics+ diesel engine comes with a dose of electrical power
  • No plug-in recharging required; reduces CO2 emissions
  • On sale later in 2018, with Kia Ceed version to follow
  • EcoDynamics+ diesel engine comes with a dose of electrical power
  • No plug-in recharging required; reduces CO2 emissions
  • On sale later in 2018, with Kia Ceed version to follow

Kia will launch its first electrically-assisted diesel engine in late 2018, with the advanced powertrain making its debut in the current Sportage SUV.

The upcoming third-generation Kia Ceed will be the next in line to recieve the mild-hybrid system in 2019. Unusually for a hybrid, the combined electric and internal combustion system is compatible with both manual and automatic gearboxes.

A petrol engine will follow suit, while further applications for front-, rear- and all-wheel drive configurations are yet to be confirmed.

Badged EcoDynamics+, full details of the diesel engine – including size, performance, CO2 output and fuel economy figures - will be revealed at launch. The system aims to reduce emissions without the need for plug-in recharging.

The lack of plug-in charging and larger batteries makes for a simplified hybrid system - hence why Kia refers to this as a ‘mild-hybrid’ system. It consists of a 48-volt battery and Mild-Hybrid Start Generator (MHSG).

How does this work?

The generator recuperates energy and charges the battery when the car is being driven downhill or decelerating towards a junction. If there is sufficient battery power, the diesel engine can switch off altogether during the battery charging process, before firing up again as soon as the driver presses the throttle pedal.

The battery effectively helps nudge the Kia along with short bursts of electrical power, assisting the diesel engine by providing additional torque and reducing the amount of work required under acceleration.

As a result, CO2 emissions are claimed to be reduced by up to 4% on the latest WLTP testing system and up to 7% based on the traditional NEDC figures.

While this means you won’t be able to drive solely on electrical power, this simpler system enables easier fitment within the pre-existing range of vehicles on sale.

You win some, you lose some

By having a larger 48-volt battery fitted on board, this means the traditional battery in the engine bay can be much smaller, while the Mild-Hybrid Start Generator also allows for a smaller starter motor; freeing up space up front.

Depending on the vehicle fitted with this tech, the 48-volt battery is often located beneath the boot floor - so we’d recommend checking if boot space is affected if you do consider one of these.

What does this mean for company car drivers in the future?

Expect to see more of this technology fitted to vehicles in the forthcoming years. Kia plans to launch five new hybrids, five plug-in hybrids and five battery-electric vehicles by 2025; including a hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle in 2020.

Parkers will be among the first to drive this engine, so check back with us as the full details unfold over the course of the year for the mild-hybrid diesel variant of the Kia Sportage SUV

Sidebar Right

Choose a different car: