We’ve been stoked about the new Elantra N ever since Hyundai teased their performance sedan. Making its global debut Tuesday, the N packs the same hoot-and-a-half rambunctiousness of the Veloster N hatchback with all the style and refinement of Hyundai’s redesigned Elantra sedan.
Under the hood there’s a 2.0-liter turbocharged I4 engine, sending 276bhp and 393Nm of torque to the front wheels. Hyundai will offer both a six-speed manual with automatic rev-matching, as well as an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. The latter comes with the Veloster’s weirdly named N Grin Shift function, which is like Porsche’s Sport Response button — hit it and you momentarily get 286bhp. So equipped, the Elantra N can accelerate to 100kmph in just 5.3 seconds, on its way to a 250kmph top speed. It even has launch control. Awesome.
A limited-slip differential manages power at the front axle, and 245/35-series Michelin Pilot Sport 4S summer tires offer plenty of grip at all four corners. Behind the N-specific 19-inch wheels you’ll find larger brakes, and everything about this car has been totally amped up. The suspension is stiffer, the steering ratio is quicker and there are a number of selectable drive modes, including a full-on N performance setting accessed by a big blue button on the steering wheel.
Outside, the Elantra N definitely looks the part, with a heavily sculpted front fascia, bright red side sill extensions, and small rear wing. A pronounced diffuser houses larger exhaust pipes, and there’s a variable exhaust system, which we fully expect to snap, crackle, and pop just like the Veloster N.
Lots of mechanical prodigious to make it sharper but interestingly for the first time ever in a Hyundai, Elantra N applies an integrated drive axle inspired by WRC rally cars for added weight reduction. Elantra N’s spirited performance is further supported by N Corner Carving Differential (e-LSD, electronic Limited Slip Differential), Variable Exhaust Valve System and Launch Control—all of which are specialized, high-performance features that are applied as standard. For DCT models, N Grin Shift (NGS), N Power Shift (NPS) and N Track Sense Shift (NTS) are provided as standard features to maximize driving pleasure.
While the Elantra N might be a stretch too much, we sure are eagerly awaiting the launch of the i20 N line in India, which is expected to be on our roads by September.