The concept of the 'world car' - once the holy grail of the motor industry - seems to be dying.
Manufacturers no longer seem obsessed by offsetting the huge cost of developing new models by selling them in as many different countries as possible. Either that, or we didn't ask nicely enough, because we're told there are no plans to bring the Hyundai Veloster N to Europe.
As its name suggests the range-topping version of Hyundai's quirky three-door coupe is closely related to the i30N, sharing the same 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine and ambition to disrupt the established order through the combination of accessible performance and attractive pricing. In the US the standard 247bhp version is only a couple of hundred dollars more than the less powerful VW Golf GTI.
The upgraded Performance version, which I drove, adds a power boost to 271bhp, a limited slip differential, bigger brakes and upgraded tyres, yet still slips under the $30,000 barrier.
Does the Veloster N deliver hot hatch thrills?
The Veloster N is amusing and raw, in pretty much equal measure. Like the i30N the Veloster N has been created to prioritise thrills over refinement, feeling markedly more primal than lesser versions. There's more than a hint of old-fashioned turbo lag, a couple of beats of pause as the engine fills its lungs when asked to pull hard at short notice.
Once on boost it pulls convincingly, enthusiasm barely diminishing as the 6750rpm redline gets close, and with a hard-edged exhaust that sounds genuinely good rather than just loud. The switchable 'N' mode adds some pops and bangs on a lifted throttle, while also sharpening up various other dynamic functions.
But there's enthusiasm aplenty, as well. Like its i30 sister the Veloster N produces a fair amount of torque steer - it never feels wayward, but there's no doubting the work that front tyres and suspension have to put in to deliver the boosty motor's output over rougher surfaces. Grip levels are keen, the limited slip differential delivers plenty of front-end bite in slower, loaded turns and the Veloster proved willing to take an impressive amount of directional advice from the throttle pedal - the rear end neutralising cleanly or even being persuaded into some tidy oversteer.
The shift action for the six-speed manual gearbox is accurate, although a high-biting clutch in my test car made smooth low-speed progress difficult. The brake pedal felt a little rubbery at the top of its travel, as well - although there were no complaints about the retardation from the beefy discs.