The Hyundai RN30 concept could preview the N division's second model
Speaking at the reveal of the Hyundai Kona in South Korea, head of the firm’s vehicle testing and high-performance development Albert Biermann confirmed the second N model is due next year.
No details have been released, but Hyundai has previously hinted at the prospect of a four-wheel drive Ford Focus RS rival with its 375bhp RN30 concept of 2016.
Joonhong Park, the head of Hyundai’s high-performance vehicle development centre, explained that N would only cherry-pick the most appropriate models from the Hyundai range.
“There is no plan to have an N model for every Hyundai,” he said, “[although] we have a road map for the next few years to come”.
The division is not currently planning on integrating its hybrid, full electric and fuel cell powertrain technologies into a performance model, but Biermann admitted that market trends would likely encourage such a shift the near future.
“Hyundai has technology of every type - hybrid, plug in hybrid, EV, fuel cell,” he said. “Right now there's no plan to bring that tech to N, but when the time comes, whether that's because the customer requests it or we think there's a moment or a need by regulation, we will be ready to have a sustainable high-performance car.”
Biermann cited emotion and character as a key reason for the N brand’s hesitation to use its alternative powertrains in the very short term. He said: “I could eventually see a more emotional EV performance car. But for me, it's hard to imagine a performance car without an engine - although maybe that's me getting old.”
Reporting by James Attwood