It wasn’t too long ago when Hyundai was viewed as a maker of nothing more than cheap and uninspired cars. Oh, how far it has come, in particular when it comes to performance vehicles.
The i30 N and Veloster N put the South Korean car manufacturer on the performance car map and it is now on the verge of launching its latest N-branded model, the Elantra N. A handful of car reviewers in the U.S. have had the opportunity to put a pair of prototypes through the paces prior to the car’s market launch in 2021.
Like other Hyundai N models, the flagship Elantra variant is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that is good for 275 hp. Customers will have the option of a six-speed manual transmission or an eight-speed dual-clutch and two of the reviews below showcase both of these gearbox options. While the manual certainly provides more driver involvement, the eight-speed does produce some lovely cracks and pops from the exhaust during upshifts.
Unsurprisingly, driving the Elantra N, whether it be with the six-speed manual or the dual-clutch, seems like an awesome experience. Those with experience behind the wheel of other N models will be familiar with the firecracker of an exhaust system that the Elantra N has, as well as the smooth and direct shifting mechanism of the manual gearbox.
In the United States, the Elantra N will be particularly important to grow the N brand as it can comfortably seat five people, something the Veloster N cannot do. When sales begin, expect enthusiasm for the Hyundai brand to skyrocket.