Save the date.
It’s almost here. We are less than a week away from the world debut of Hyundai’s first full “N” model, the i30 N. After countless teasers and spy shots, the wraps are about to come off to show what is shaping up to be a worthy player in the game of compact hot hatches. Short, but sweet, the 14-second clip allows us to see some of the production metal without any sort of camouflage to come in the way.
The i30 N has a light blue paint and subtle red strips on the front bumper and the rear diffuser matched with the red brake calipers lurking behind those large 18- or 19-inch wheels. To the left of the Hyundai badge on the corporate “waterfall” grille sits the “N” logo. Some trinkets inside the cabin are also on the agenda to further separate the performance version from its lesser siblings.
Its heart and soul will be a brand new turbocharged 2.0-liter gasoline (obviously!) engine bound to be offered with 250 horsepower in the base version and with 275 hp in the hotter one. The latter will also come bundled with a limited-slip differential as well as other mechanical goodies.
The engine’s output will be channeled to the front wheels through a six-speed manual transmission, at least at first. Later on, Hyundai will also add a dual-clutch automatic gearbox to please both worlds. It might even give it all-wheel drive at some point, but it’s too early to know for sure.
Now, if only they’d do an i30 N wagon to fight the Ford Focus ST, though there are slim chances of that happening considering there wouldn’t be a lot of demand for such a vehicle. One can only dream, right?