[Photo by Hyundai Motor Group]
Hyundai Motor Group – the owner of South Korea’s two largest carmakers Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp. – has appointed Martin Zeilinger, former engineering head at Daimler Trucks AG, to head its commercial vehicle development business as it moves to integrate innovative technologies with future commercial vehicles.
According to Hyundai Motor Group on Tuesday, Zeilinger, who will join the auto conglomerate from Wednesday, will be responsible for commercial vehicle development at Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors. He will lead development of future eco-friendly commercial vehicles such as hydrogen-powered electric trucks and buses.
Based on his more than 30 years of experience of developing autonomous trucks as head of product engineering e-mobility Daimler Trucks & Buses at Daimler Trucks, Zeilinger will also be in charge of integrating autonomous technology to Hyundai and Kia’s commercial vehicles.
“I am very proud of joining Hyundai Motor Group on the way to global growth with new technologies,” the executive vice president said in a statement. “The commercial vehicle industry has big environmental and economic challenges but also has big chances for efficient and clean transportation with new technologies and vehicles. I am looking forward to bringing my experience in a new business environment.”
Zeilinger, a graduate of aerospace engineering at Stuttgart University in Germany, joined Mercedes-Benz Truck as testing expert in 1987. In 1998, he was responsible for the company’s engine periphery systems and participated in platform integration projects. In 2004, Zeilinger moved to Evobus, a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks, and took on the role of developing hydrogen-powered electric and diesel hybrid buses and expanding application of engines to Benz buses that meet Europe’s environmental standards. In 2014, the engineer led Daimler Trucks’ urban electric trucks and autonomous truck development projects before heading product engineering e-mobility from 2018.
By tapping Zeilinger to its house, Hyundai Motor Group is expected to accelerate the development of future commercial vehicles such as hydrogen-powered electric trucks and buses and self-driving trucks.
The auto conglomerate has been putting out efforts to integrate future technologies to its commercial car sector.
In September, last year, Hyundai Motor set up Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility AG with Swiss company H2Energy with an aim to introduce sustainable solutions to Europe’s commercial vehicle industry by offering emission-free commercial fuel cell vehicles. It plans to supply 1,600 electric-powered trucks in Europe by 2025.
Hyundai Motor also signed a memorandum of understanding with U.S. engine solutions company Cummins to supply hydrogen fuel cell system to commercial vehicles in North America.
In June and October, last year, Hyundai Motor unveiled its new hydrogen-powered buses and high-speed hydrogen-powered electric buses for police in line with its move to expand commercial vehicle business utilizing hydrogen fuel cell technology.
By Lee Jong-hyuk and Lee Eun-joo
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