Which will be the next sporty Hyundai?
Ever since Hyundai Group hired Albert Biermann (formerly of BMW) as head of research and development, the company has announced more sporty vehicles under the N and N-Line lineups. The Veloster N acts as a halo performance for the brand but Hyundai may go even further with a new mid-engined sports car. On the softer end of the lineup, Hyundai will introduce N-Line vehicles with a sporty flavor like the recently-announced Sonata N-Line.
The Sonata N-Line will use the group's new 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine producing around 290 horsepower. Now we have word that the Sonata N-Line will be joined by a smaller model based on the next-generation Hyundai Elantra.
The current Elantra, now in its sixth generation, was recently given a facelift for the 2019 model year but has been on the market since the 2017 model year. The seventh-generation Elantra is on its way and could make a debut later this year, possibly as early as March. We expect the standard car to be propelled by the same 2.0-liter four-cylinder found in the Kia Forte, sending 147 hp out to the front wheels through a CVT. There should also be a sportier version powered by a 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder producing 201 hp. In the past, Hyundai has called this model the Elantra Sport but we expect the seventh-generation model to be called the Elantra N-Line.
Hyundai already uses the N-Line name on the Elantra GT hatchback but the sedan has kept the Elantra Sport name. In addition to the new name, the Sonata N-Line is expected to use a new eight-speed dual-clutch transmission, replacing the current seven-speed unit. A six-speed manual may be offered as well but is not confirmed. Like the new Sonata, we expect the Elantra to feature radical new styling that will make people turn their heads.