Hyundai has revealed two electrified concepts to showcase the future of its N performance sub-brand. Called the N Vision 74 and RN22e concepts, they’re powered by hydrogen and electricity respectively. While Hyundai’s current N models - the i20 N, i30 N and Kona N - are powered by petrol engines, the next generation of N cars will be zero-emission. The first will be the Hyundai Ioniq 5 N, which has been confirmed for launch later this year.
Full details of the Ioniq 5 N have yet to be released, but we’d imagine the electric hot hatch to come with features like a bigger spoiler, rear diffuser, widened wheel arches, and larger wheels than the standard Ioniq 5, all of which will serve to give the car more street-cred and that ‘X’ (or ‘N’) factor.
It can’t be all form over function, though; the car will need larger air ducts to increase cooling to the battery and motors, which will have to work much harder (and get much hotter) to deliver the extra power the N model will deliver.
Hyundai also revealed its RN22e concept car based on the Ioniq 6 saloon alongside the news of the upcoming Ioniq 5 N. The Hyundai RN22e concept (which uses the same E-GMP platform as the Ioniq 5) is fitted with front and rear electric motors which combine to produce 569bhp and 546lb ft of torque, for a potential 0-62mph time as quick as 3.5 seconds. It seems to preview a racy Hyundai Ioniq 6 N model.
It’s not completely unrealistic to expect a similar system to be installed in the Ioniq 5 N, especially after Hyundai told our sister title Auto Express that the RN22e is a ‘glimpse of an upcoming EV N’ and will ‘play a big role in the development of our product line-up, especially our electrified high-performance vehicles’. The Kia EV6 GT boasts similar statistics to the RN22e concept, which also points to a lightning-fast acceleration time for the Ioniq 5 N.
The concept car also comes with a feature dubbed N+ Sound, a system that pumps artificial noise into the cabin to add to the excitement of the hot EV experience. We think it’s highly likely this tech will feature on the upcoming Ioniq 5 N.
Hyundai’s retro-styled N Vision 74 concept also looks pretty epic – no, it’s not a DeLorean, but it certainly looks like something straight out of an 80s sci-fi film. The N Vision 74 is actually a hydrogen fuel-cell powered vehicle which pays tribute to Hyundai’s own history.
The design is heavily based on the 1974 Hyundai Pony concept car designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro (yes – that also looks like a DeLorean, despite the fact the Pony predates it.)
The N Vision 74’s fuel cell technology is said to give it around 662bhp with 664lb ft of torque with a top speed of 155mph and a range of around 372 miles. Topping it up, however, takes just five minutes. Sadly, though, Hyundai has stated that the N Vision 74 is more like a design exercise, so it looks much less likely to make production than the RN22e.
Can Hyundai translate the excitement of its petrol ‘N’ performance cars over to its electrified offerings? We’ll be watching this space closely.