The South Koreans are proving to be fearless.
This isn't the first time we've seen a Hyundai Kona N prototype out testing. However, today we can actually see and hear it running laps around the ultimate testing ground, the Nurburgring, in this new video from Automotive Mike.
The South Korean automaker has gone to great lengths over the past few years to move away from its pure econobox past to a design powerhouse. The Hyundai Veloster N is, at present, the best example of serious performance plans as well. Just last week, the new but overseas-only i20 N was unveiled, a 200 horsepower beast of a little thing that seriously looks the part. Hopefully, it'll deliver the performance goods. We think it will, and the Kona N's own upcoming debut is where our excitement can be found.
And yes, as far as we know, it will be sold in the US. In fact, sources claim it'll come powered by the Veloster N's 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine which packs up to 275 hp and 278 lb-ft of twist when equipped with the optional Performance Package. We don't see why Hyundai engineers can't do the same for a subcompact crossover.
Even listening to the Kona N prototype lapping the 'Ring has further increased our expectations. It looks and sounds great, but unlike its hot hatch cousin, the Kona N will see power sent to all four wheels, not just the front. Despite the body camouflage, it's possible to see the mighty little crossover's front-end styling, inspired directly by the also new and bold-looking Santa Fe.
The large rear spoiler and diffuser also can't be missed. Compared to the standard Kona, there are also some styling changes to the front bumper and taillights, though we suspect these are part of an upcoming facelift. Hyundai has not announced an official reveal date just yet, but you can be sure the likes of Audi and BMW are already paying attention.
Chances are the Kona N will cost quite a bit less than, say, a BMW X1 or Audi Q3, and will be even more powerful than both.