Saturday 28th May 2016
Hyundai i30 N test car at Nurburgring
As predicted by Autocar, the first N-badged performance model will be based on the next i30 and will go on sale in 2017 for less than £30k
The Hyundai i30 N will launch in 2017 as the first road car manufactured by the Korean firm's performance sub-division, N, boss Albert Biermann has confirmed.The news is hardly unexpected - modified Hyundai i30 test cars sporting performance tweaks have been pounding around the Nürburgring since the middle of last year - but it marks the first time a Hyundai official has stated on the record that the i30 will be the first model to get the N performance treatment.Based on the next-generation i30, the Hyundai i30 N will get a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, and Biermann hinted it could have a top speed of around 155mph.It will also be offered with a track-focused performance package, which will further boost engine performance.“Our car will be affordable,” said Biermann, who in 2014 left his job as vice president of engineering at BMW’s M performance car division to oversee Hyundai’s new N division. The car is expected to be priced under the £30,000 mark, with Hyundai stressing N division's focus will be on "affordable performance".Initially the front-wheel-drive i30 N will come with a manual gearbox. A version equipped with an automatic transmission will arrive around 2018, and Biermann also said that an all-wheel-drive version could be possible for the future.The Hyundai i30 N will take the manufacturer into unfamiliar territory and put it up against performance hatches such as the Volkswagen Golf GTI and Ford Focus ST.The engine is based on an existing Hyundai powerplant, but has been specifically tuned for more performance and could have more than 259bhp, but this has not been confirmed by the manufacturer.High-performance upgrades over the standard i30 include an electronically adjusted limited-slip differential, increased brake performance and a tweaked gearbox, as well as a reworked exhaust.Biermann also confirmed that Genesis, Hyundai's luxury standalone sister brand, will get high-performance variants of its models, and suggested it would be available in the UK."We will go into different markets and regions with N," Biermann said. "We will also develop high-performance cars for the Genesis brand but they won't have the N badge. N is just the sub-label for Hyundai cars."Hyundai has recently unveiled the Ioniq - a car with hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric powertrains - and Biermann hinted that hybrid powertrains would play a part in N's future."We have everything available," he said. "It's too early now [for hybrid powertrains in N cars], but the time will come soon definitely."A development version of the i30 N is racing in the Nürburgring 24 Hours endurance race this weekend to test components that will eventually make it on to the production car.The development car, badged as a Hyundai i30 2.0T, was built for Hyundai by the motorsport department of German-based Hyundai dealership Schumann.Compared to a standard i30, around 40% of the development i30 Turbo is new. The engine is newly developed and will be at the focus of the test. The car also has enhanced suspension, dampers, in addition to upgrades such as different wheels, tweaked steering, wider bumpers and mandatory motorsport safety features.The manufacturer is tight-lipped as to how much power the i30 Turbo possesses, although an accompanying teaser video briefly shows an engine undergoing dynomometer testing, with figures exceeding 259bhp and 227lb ft at 6000rpm showing on the computer read-out.Biermann said: “This 24-hour race provides the ideal test bed for our motorsport-inspired N brand development and a key part of our ‘born at Namyang, honed at Nürburgring’ performance-car ethos. The technological inspiration and experience gained from this extreme testing will accelerate our development of high-performance, fun-to-drive N brand models.”The Hyundai i30 2.0 Turbo will be raced by one of the test drivers who also carries out Hyundai’s endurance tests at the Nordschleife, Bruno Beulen. He will share the car with Michael Bohrer, Alexander Köppen and Rory Pentinnen.Hyundai has played down its expectations for the race: “While the team is keen on achieving a strong result, the core focus of the development car is to gather motor racing experience to influence future mass production of N brand performance cars”.The manufacturer will run three cars in the endurance race, with the development car joined by close-to-production versions of the i30 – which bagged a class win in last year’s race – and Veloster.Hyundai has been working on the development of performance models since 2013, when it first launched the ‘N’ brand as part of its World Rally Championship assault. The company has a 3600-square-metre test facility at the Nürburgring.Cars competing in the Nürburgring 24 Hours will complete around 150 laps of the 15.7-mile circuit, a race distance of more than 2600 miles.
Amazing coast drive using only A & B roads and keeping the sea in view wherever possible all in the target of 8 days. We did this nutty trip to raise funds for the Motor Neurone Association of Great Britain and raised the sum of Â£4000+...
Saturday 28th May 2016
The #88 Haribo Racing Mercedes AMG GT3 leads the Nurburgring 24 Hours after the erstwhile leading #18 Schubert Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 expired