Hyundai Launches N Performance Sub-Brand
Hyundai Motor Co. has launched a new sub-brand called "N." The new brand will consist of high-performance road cars, as well as the ambitious rally car project. As we know, Hyundai will be a part of the 2014 World Rally Championship and its resident rally car, the i20 WRC, will be the first product built under this new N brand.
By now, you must be wondering why the letter "N;" well, Hyundai is based in Namyang, Korea, and that is where the "N" comes from — easy enough. In an odd twist, the Hyundai N performance division isn’t actually based in Korea; it is actually stationed in Alzenau, Germany, which just outside Frankfurt.
This German plant is home to the 2014 rally car, and it is where the company has plans to build its road cars under the new N sub-brand. Having said that, we can’t say for sure whether these N performance rigs will be bespoke sports car or just tuned versions of existing Hyundai models.
Speaking at the press briefing, Hyundai motorsport president, Gyoo-Heon Choi, said: "This is the start of a new chapter in Hyundai’s history, one that we expect to have a positive impact on our brand around the globe."
Click past the jump to read more about the Hyundai i20 WRC
Hyundai announced that it would enter the 2014 World Rally Championship with the unveiling of the Hyundai i20 WRC car at the 2013 Geneva motor show. The car is built considering FIA regulations and has been a joint project of Hyundai R&D in Namyang, South Korea and Hyundai Motorsports GmBH based out of Alzenau, Germany. Hyundai has appointed Michel Nandan as Team Principle who will spearhead the brands return on the world rally scene.
The Hyundai i20 WRC is based around the road-going i20 hatchback, which has been heavily modified for the racing series. The current regulations limit the car to a 1.6-liter engine, which is turbocharged and produces around 300 horsepower.
Depending on the gearing, a WRC car can do in excess of 125 mph. All WRC-spec cars rely on all-wheel drive for traction and a large wing for downforce, along with other aerodynamic aides. The gearbox is usually a six-speed sequential piece.