Hyundai Sustainable World Cup

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When I hear someone say “football,” I’m far from the global norm. I think of overweight middle-aged men wearing the uniforms of their favorite sports team while watching “the game” on TV, and perhaps even doing “fantasy football” in their spare time. But, they still have the audacity to mock Trekkies, furries, and other people who gather together and dress up. After all, their sport is manly and highly heterosexual (you know, watching big, sweaty men tackle each other), and that other stuff is just silly, and maybe gay.

But, ask people just about anywhere else in the world about football, and they’ll think of something else entirely. It’s something we play in the United States, but we call it “soccer.” Unlike American football, global football is primarily played with (checks notes)…actual feet. They also have their own version of the Super Bowl, but it’s an even bigger event because teams from all over the planet try to win that World Cup.

When people come from all over the planet to be somewhere, we’re talking about a pretty big environmental impact, though. Fortunately (even for people in the United States), FIFA (the organization that runs the event) is trying to make it a cleaner event. Hyundai Motor Company has proudly announced that it will be supplying eco-friendly vehicles for 50% of the FIFA World Cup 2022’s passenger transportation. This is a monumental event as it marks the first time in history that environmentally friendly cars have been utilized at this level for such a large competition.

Hyundai Motor will give 616 vehicles to FIFA World Cup 2022. 446 of those cars will be passenger vehicles, 229 units being hybrid electric (HEV) and battery-electric (BEV) models. Furthermore, it will also provide 10 Elec City buses that run on electricity for the event in Qatar from November 20th to December 18th.

“Hyundai Motor and FIFA share a strong commitment to make this year’s event a sustainable success through the use of clean mobility,” said Jaehoon Chang, President and CEO of Hyundai Motor Company. “By providing our eco-friendly hybrid and battery electric vehicles as ground transportation, we expect to achieve our shared goal of making the World Cup in Qatar a win-win for planet Earth and humanity.”

Details On Its Green Operation

Hyundai Motor is preparing a dedicated organization and support system for stable EV operations. This includes providing Hyundai IONIQ 5, Sonata HEV, Tucson HEV, and KONA HEV, as well as Genesis G80 EV and GV70 EVs to transport FIFA VIPs and staff, Elec City buses to transport members of the media, operating road-side charging services to discharged BEVs using the innovative Vehicle-to-Load (V2L) function on two IONIQ 5 BEVs. Furthermore, FIFA will provide 100 kW-150 kW EV chargers at the event’s parking facilities located in Doha, Qatar, to ensure the BEVs’ continuous operation.

But, it doesn’t stop with technology. Management is also deeply important. Hyundai Motor will be conducting real-time monitoring of the fleet vehicles for any accidents or breakages that may occur. If needed, they will provide prompt service response such as emergency dispatch, troubleshooting, and vehicle inspection. The company is also utilizing a real-time vehicle control system in order to improve their quality management when it comes to servicing their fleets of vehicles. By detecting any accident or breakage in real time, the system unifies all processes from warehousing the vehicles and dispatching them in an emergency situation to repairing them and responding to accidents accordingly.

A dedicated team from HMC Headquarters Service, Sub-Middle East Regional Service, and Sub-Middle East Regional Quality Center will be available to assist with local operation throughout the competition period. The team will use Qatar dealership service infrastructure for vehicle repair as needed. Hyundai Motor has been conducting a training program about its HEVs and BEVs for all drivers involved in the fleet operation since October.

Hyundai Motor not only provides fleet vehicles but also launched the Goal of the Century campaign in April with former England national football player Steven Gerrard as captain. The goal is to increase awareness for sustainability and provide a means for people all over the world to participate in making change.

Recently, all 11 members of Team Century were revealed to be a single united team. This team includes Hyundai Motor’s global brand ambassador BTS, Afghan refugee football player and Denmark UNESCO ambassador Nadia Nadim, American fashion designer Jeremy Scott, Italian sculptor Lorenzo Quinn, documentary photographer Nicky Woo, and Boston Dynamics robot Spot.

Not A New Partnership

Hyundai and FIFA have been in cahoots since 1999, when Hyundai agreed to sponsor 13 of FIFA’s competitions; this included the 2002 World Cup held in Korea and Japan. However, their partnership doesn’t stop there. Hyundai has comprehensive rights for all future FIFA competitions, including but not limited to: the Women’s World Cup Tournament, the U-20 and U-17 World Cups (for both boys and girls), Beach Soccer World Cup, Futsal World Cup…and of course, the highly anticipated main event itself — the World Cup itself.

Hyundai will continue to support FIFA at the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2022™, but this time they are partnering to make a sustainable FIFA World Cup.

The environmental commitment is also nothing new.

This year, Hyundai is partnering with FIFA to promote the Goal of the Century campaign in order to unify global citizens for sustainability. In 2016, FIFA became the first sports federation to join forces with the UN Sports for Climate Action Framework and has been working diligently ever since then alongside other sports federations, teams, athletes, and fans to meet goals set by The Paris Agreement.

Hyundai thinks football can be a unifying force in the world, which makes it the perfect opportunity to introduce sustainability goals. Hopefully its optimism on sports produces real results. One thing is for sure, Hyundai has been very serious about EV production and produces serious EVs that give other manufacturers (including Tesla) a real run for the money. 800-volt charging systems, great range, and sharp looks are all there. So, while this looks like a marketing stunt, it’s backed up by real action.

Want to learn more about what Hyundai is doing at the World Cup? Check out the website here.


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Jennifer Sensiba

Jennifer Sensiba is a long time efficient vehicle enthusiast, writer, and photographer. She grew up around a transmission shop, and has been experimenting with vehicle efficiency since she was 16 and drove a Pontiac Fiero. She likes to get off the beaten path in her "Bolt EAV" and any other EVs she can get behind the wheel or handlebars of with her wife and kids. You can find her on Twitter here, Facebook here, and YouTube here.

Jennifer Sensiba has 1955 posts and counting. See all posts by Jennifer Sensiba