To Europe, yes. To the US? We hope so.
Hyundai has seemingly received the message from hot hatch fans that the Veloster Turbo, despite the cool name, is no Ford Focus ST or VW Golf GTI beater. Real hot hatch fans would opt for the Fiesta ST over a Veloster Turbo any day of the week. But the Veloster Turbo came out in 2013, before Hyundai poached now former BMW M engineering king Albert Biermann. Today, he’s the guy behind sister brand Kia’s Nurburgring-ready Stinger GT sedan.
Earlier this month, the Europe-only (seriously Hyundai, seriously??) i30 N hot hatch debuted, Biermann’s latest creation, and Top Gear spoke with him regarding the application future performance tech. The i30 is front-wheel-drive, but is all-wheel-drive even being considered? "We have been testing four-wheel drive," Biermann confirmed. "But there is no plan at the moment to offer an N car with it. Of course we are looking into this. But we are just getting started with the N brand. There are prototypes out there and it is not a big deal to do it." However, if Biermann and crew were to add AWD, then surely there’d be a need for more power, right? Biermann remained noncommittal, but the engineering makes sense.
The i30 N will also only be offered, at least initially, with a six-speed manual. We doubt anyone’s complaining, but what about a fast-shifting dual-clutch or paddle shift automatic? "We are developing such a transmission in Hyundai and we are thinking sooner or later to bring it in to the range." Fortunately, N cars will always have a manual option, Biermann confirmed. What this all means is that there are lots more possibilities for the i30 N and, hopefully, the US market will one day soon benefit from them as well.