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Hyundai to catch up in the green car race with 500km-per-charge electric vehicle

  • Hyundai Motor said on Thursday it will launch a long-range electric vehicle with a driving range of 500 km (311 miles) per charge after 2021
  • The move seeks to address investor concerns that the company is lagging rivals in the green car race
Visitors look at a Hyundai Ioniq electric vehicle at the Hyundai Motorstudio showroom in Goyang, South Korea, on Friday, July 14, 2017.
SeongJoon Cho | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Visitors look at a Hyundai Ioniq electric vehicle at the Hyundai Motorstudio showroom in Goyang, South Korea, on Friday, July 14, 2017.

Hyundai Motor said Thursday it will launch a long-range electric vehicle with a driving range of 500 km (311 miles) per charge after 2021, seeking to address investor concerns that it is lagging rivals in the green car race.

The automaker and affiliate Kia Motors, which together rank fifth in global vehicle sales, also said they are planning 31 eco-friendly models by 2020, up from a previously flagged 28.

Battery-powered cars offered by the likes of Tesla are gaining traction faster than fuel cell vehicles backed by Hyundai Motor and Toyota Motor.

Last year, Hyundai launched its first mass-market pure electric car IONIQ, but the vehicle's per-charge driving range is much shorter than offerings from Tesla and GM.

Hyundai also said it will introduce a small electric sport utility vehicle (SUV) with a driving range of 390 km in the first half of next year.