Hyundai is rumoured to be working on a performance version of its i20 supermini. The new car will be the second in Hyundai’s new ‘N’ line-up of performance models following the larger i30 N. Details are scarce at the moment, but here’s what we know so far…
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Hyundai i20 N styling
The standard i20 is a smart looking supermini, but lacks many details that would help it stand out in a car park. Any sporty version would have to look the part to compete with rivals including the Ford Fiesta ST and Vauxhall Corsa VXR. Our exclusive render demonstrates just how sporting Hyundai intends to go with its new hot hatch.
Flared wheelarches and a honeycomb grille are part and parcel of any modern performance car, so we expect the Korean manufacturer to follow suit, especially given the spyshots of the i20 N’s larger brother – the i30 N. Larger air intakes and, of course, bigger diameter alloy wheels should complete the look, but there could be personalisation elements including possibly decals.
Hyundai i20 N interior
It seems probable that the i20 N will launch alongside a mild facelift of the current car, but we expect its interior to widely mirror the standard version’s. That means a surprisingly spacious and decent quality interior, with plenty of equipment to help it stand out against rivals. ‘N’ badging is almost a certainty, and there will be a few sporting touches as well – potentially including sports bucket seats.
Hyundai i20 N driving and engines
Hyundai has recruited top talent from BMW’s M division to ensure its new sporting models have some serious clout when it comes to driving ability. Given that the i30 N has been spotted testing the Nurburgring, it’s likely that Hyundai intends to put the junior model through similar paces to help refine it into a truly agile machine.
What will lie under the bonnet currently remains unclear – in Germany there is an i20 ‘Sport’ with a turbocharged 120hp 1.0-litre engine, but the i20 N’s main rivals have power approaching 200hp. We can’t imagine Hyundai using anything smaller than a 1.6-litre turbo, possibly the one found in the i30 Turbo, with 184hp.
Hyundai i20 N price and release date
The i20 isn’t quite the bargain that it used to be, with prices ranging between £11,000-£17,500. Considering its main rivals cost from around this top-end mark, we expect that Hyundai will price the i20 N from around £16,500-17,000 – just undercutting rivals, but offering more equipment as standard.
The larger i30 N will be the brand’s first performance car, and with that model set to launch in 2017, we’d hazard a guess that the i20 N will follow shortly after – expect cars to reach the UK by early 2018 at the latest.
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