The option will be extended to more models including the new Santa Fe off-roader, on show at Birmingham and due for launch in May.
A spokeswoman said diesel engines would allow Hyundai to compete in new markets. The company could also be more effective in sectors where diesel took a high proportion of sales, such as with the Trajet MPV.
The common-rail engines were developed in-house. First into the market will be the mainstay, 109bhp 2-litre TDi. It will go into Elantra, Trajet, and Santa Fe.