Hyundai Kona N (2021) with the technology from the i30 N

Hyundai brings the SUV version of the i30 N: The Kona N comes with 280 hp

Hyundai will bring a Kona N with the technology from the i30 N facelift in 2021. AUTO BILD has already driven a camouflaged prototype.

Hyundai is also bringing the Kona as a sport version with the suffix N. Another sport SUV, you think? Stop! The Kona N is really serious. AUTO BILD convinced itself of this on the first trip with a camouflaged prototype on the racetrack.

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The technology comes from the i30 N

Below is basically an i30 N of the upcoming facelift generation. That means: 280 PS, 392 Nm. The revised turbo four-cylinder with a displacement of two liters responds better, unfolds its power more widely ux308; via the gear steps. Of course, the eight-speed double clutch also contributes significantly to the more agile impression, because with two more gears and the resulting narrower gradation, the optimal band can be used more efficiently.

Hyundai Kona N

Despite the taller body and slightly shorter wheelbase, we hardly miss any lateral dynamic driving talent.

© Hyundai Motor

In addition, Hyundai has improved the responsiveness of the turbocharger. While the longer power output, especially in the high speed range, ensures that the engine at the top does not run out of breath as quickly as was often criticized in old tests of the i30 N, the more responsive turbo mainly benefits the intermediate sprint values. The wheel-tire combination is also the same as in the i30 N Facelift: forged 19-inch models with Pirelli P-Zero in “HN” specification. The P-Zero is a sporty tire in itself, but far from semi-slick. Nevertheless, he has a hard time finding grip during our test on the racetrack in mixed conditions.

Driving pleasure thanks to the loosely fitting rear

Interesting: The rear axle tends to lose its composure faster than the front axle could smear into understeer. For us, this indicates that the Kona N provides driving pleasure even in dry conditions with a rather loose-fitting rear. The steering made an initial impression that was a bit too smooth, and so far we had nothing to complain about in terms of steering precision and steering ratio.

Everything about driving fun

With pure front-wheel drive, he plays the classic hot hatch theme through to the end; a heavy all-wheel drive would have cost driving dynamics and thus driving fun. And that is important to Hyundai. Launch Control not only works in expert mode, but also with Sport ESP. This may not always result in perfect values ​​because the electronics now and then regulate performance. But in return, the average driver who does not dare to switch off the ESP immediately can also enjoy it. Our first impression: successful!

Look, price and premiere

Hyundai Kona N !! ILLUSTRATION !!

In the typical N colors: This is what the production version of the Hyundai Kona N could look like.

© Bernhard Reichel

What exactly changes in the optics cannot yet be seen thanks to the camouflage. It is clear that the N is likely to appear more brutal than the tamer Kona variants; with a much more pronounced front splitter, blackened decorative elements and the two-pipe sports exhaust system. The end product will likely get a completely redesigned rear apron inspired by the i30 N with a wide diffuser. How the production version could look is shown in the AUTO BILD illustration. And the price? AUTO BILD suspects that the Hyundai Kona N will start at around 34,500 euros. The Sport Kona is expected to roll out to dealers in 2021.


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