Hyundai N division ponders stand-alone sports car

2019 Hyundai Veloster N, 2018 Detroit auto show

Hyundai dove into the realm of performance cars with the birth of its N division, which soon gave way to the i30N and Veloster N. In the future, “N” could stand for “Nutso” for Hyundai’s skunkworks.

reported Tuesday that a stand-alone sports car could be in the pipeline for the Korean performance division. Albert Biermann, who currently heads the N division and once led BMW’s M division, admitted the team has been working on different ideas for a new sports car. And one of the ideas is a mid-engine sports car based on the Veloster Midship concept.

The Veloster Midship concept is a mid-engined version of the Veloster hatchback with a 2.0-liter turbo-4 rated at 300 horsepower.

Biermann didn’t confirm such a car would ever be produced, but the team is most definitely tossing around ideas.

We are still working on these cars, trying different things. Maybe someday we will have such a car. There is no decision yet, but it could happen,” he said.

That decision won’t be coming anytime soon, however. The N chief said Hyundai dealers would first become accustomed to performance vehicles and products. “Spreading out too many cars too fast,” is not the strategy, Biermann added. First, N-branded cars and SUVs will come. Then a “bespoke” product could join the lineup.

Speaking of future N cars, Biermann believes any Hyundai currently could fit the N division. We know Biermann has already tasked engineers with beginning work on a Kona N, which awaits an OK from upper management. A Kona N would benefit from same powertrain and chassis upgrades that existing Hyundai N models. Knowing that, a Kona N would likely also receive a hotter 2.0-liter turbo-4 engine that makes anywhere between 246 to 275 horsepower.


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