We’ve heard rumours about a Hyundai i20 N for ages, although there’s not been much to whet our appetite recently. But this week, a now-deleted video shown by Hyundai Austria has revealed darkened image of an i20 that looks very promising indeed. It seems like Hyundai really is set to go toe-to-toe with the Fiesta ST, even if the GR Yaris will remain top dog in the mini hot hatch world.
The image shows the LED daytime running lights and window-line of the standard car, but it’s clear that this is no normal i20. There’s a petite splitter poking out of the bottom of the front bumper, and side skirts with a red slash across the bottom - which we hope will stay on the production version. The i20 N will get a big spoiler, too, along with a diffuser, dual exhaust tips and new alloys.
In the UK, the regular i20 is only going to receive a 99bhp 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine with mild-hybrid tech, but that won’t get our pulses racing. Instead, the i20 N will use a new engine producing somewhere in the region of 180-200bhp.
It’s possible that the i20 N might get a detuned version of the 2.0-litre engine fitted to the Hyundai i30 N. Alternatively, Hyundai offers the Kona with a 175bhp 1.6-litre lump, which could easily be fettled for use in the fast i20. The Kona hits 0-62mph in a whisker under eight seconds, but the lighter i20 N should be much quicker than this.
The next-gen i20 will have a really impressive interior, with a pair of 10.25-inch screens for the dials and infotainment - not even the Mercedes A-Class gets those as standard. The N will get unique graphics and perhaps a mode to show off your performance data, on the off chance that your friends will be interested.
Like the i30 N, the smaller hatch will get the usual sporty bits - a flat-bottomed steering wheel, more supportive seats and lots of red stitching. Judging on the equipment on the standard i20, the N will get phone mirroring, sat nav and wireless phone charging.
We’re expecting big things from the i20 N. Hyundai shocked the world by making the i30 N really rather good - it was the Korean brand’s first-ever hot hatch and immediately it was a proper rival to the Golf GTI and Focus ST.
Are you excited about the prospect of an i20 N? Tell us in the comments!