The Korean carmaker Hyundai is up to something with their “N” performance lineup and they teased us one too many times with the RN30 concept displayed in the Paris Auto Show. It certainly trumps any hatchback available for sale right now, just look at it.
Now, the Hyundai AWD i30 N is what blossomed out of the concept version, but it won’t be available everywhere and sadly not in the U.S. market. The power-train will indeed make it to the states however.
The engine isn’t all that special, but it works in the mild hatchback market it’s targeting – It will have a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that produces 260-hp.
Albert Biermann, Hyundai’s head of product development said; “The next car is focused on the U.S. and Korea—it’s a different platform. After that, there’s another one for Europe, then I start thinking about China—but the Chinese have not discovered what a performance car is yet, we need to tell them a little bit about it,”
Regardless of how ridiculous those statements are, he also included further ridicule by mentioning how other manufacturers are obsessed with Nürburgring lap times. The Hyundai AWD i30 N isn’t falling for that he said.
“Forget it, we’re not going for that. We were working on tuning at the Nürburgring, but not a lap time number. We know the car is fast, but there’s no plan to offer it with cup tires or without rear seats. Of course, I can speak to Michelin or Pirelli and get them to make me some nice tires, maybe go 10 seconds quicker on the Nordschleife . . . [but] we don’t want to do this.”
To comfort us, Biermann mentioned that the N performance line-up will indeed forge more potent models that are aimed at taking down most of the competition available right now. I can see how a bigger turbo on the newly developed 2.0-liter turbocharged engine might churn out 340-hp. The current one is pretty tiny and it’s taking on the Golf GTI but has wayy more power. The GTI only manages 220-bhp from its 2.0-liter TSI engine.
“We look at all kinds of solutions, and of course we talk to suppliers, just like Ford does,” he said. “Yes, we have started this sort of thing, and we always want to have [a] strong value for [the] money, we need to be sure the customer benefit for such expensive technology is really there.”