First look at Hyundai's new i40

* Designed for European tastes * Sub-160g/km emissions for manual cars * Long wheelbase benefits legroom...

First look at Hyundai's new i40

Hyundai has released the first computer-generated images of its new Ford Mondeo-rivalling i40, which will be unveiled at the Geneva motor show in March.

The i40 is the company's first family car that has been designed specifically with the European market in mind even though the market for family cars has been falling here for years.

The i40 features a distinctive bowed line in the rearmost roof pillar, taken from the companys Genus concept car of 2006.

Efficient engines
The i40 will be powered by a range of engines with emissions as low as 113g/km and average economy of up to 60mpg. All manual versions of cars will have emissions of less than 160g/km.

The largest engine will be the new 2.0-litre GDI petrol unit developing 175bhp and around 160lb ft of torque. CO2 emissions will be 156g/km with the six-speed manual transmission fitted, while average economy will be more than 55mpg.

A 140bhp 1.6-litre version of the same engine, which recently made its debut in the Kia Sportage, will also be offered, and there will be three versions of the 1.7-litre turbodiesel, which also made its first appearance in the Sportage.

The mainstay of the range will be the 140bhp diesel, which has similar power to the 2.0-litre engines from most of the major European competition. The range will start with a 125bhp option featuring the Hyundai-Kia Intelligent Stop & Go engine stop-start system, pegging CO2 emissions at a class low of 113g/km.

In the second half of 2012, Hyundai will add a performance version with twin turbos, increasing the power to 160bhp without upping fuel consumption. The CO2 emissions target with this engine is 119g/km.

At nearly 4.8 metres long the i40 is roughly the size of most of its rivals, but it has an unusually long wheelbase of almost 2.8 metres, ensuring generous legroom and luggage space. Hyundai says the i40 offers a minimum 553 litres for cargo, stretching to more than 1700 litres with the rear seats folded down.