Spy Shots

We Saw Hyundai Testing Mid-Engine 295-HP Hatchback At The Ring

Please, please let this make production.

We’ve thrown a lot of shade at Hyundai over its roll out of N. The automaker’s in-house performance arm still doesn’t have a car to its name. Its first model is scheduled to be a souped-up version of the i30 hatchback, a car unlikely to be available in the United States. Awesome… But then our spy photographers sent us shots of the RM16 N, a mid-engine hatchback concept, running around the Nurburgring. Is it possible that Hyundai is considering putting this car into production? Also, did pigs just suddenly learn to fly?

There are two schools of thought regarding the RM16 N caught on the track. The first is that the South Korean automaker is merely using it as a test mule for its upcoming N models. The second is that it is seriously considering putting it into production. We would love for the latter to be true, but it just doesn’t seem likely whatsoever. It’s tough for any automaker to green light a mid-engined performance hatchback, and Hyundai isn’t exactly known for taking chances with its models. Yeah, the Veloster is quirky as all hell but there’s a big difference between a hatchback with two doors on the passenger side and one on the driver side and a hatchback with a mid-mounted turbocharged engine making 295 horsepower.

So, that means Hyundai likely trotted out the RM16 N to test the “new” (to Hyundai) tech inside of it, such as its electric turbocharger. Could Hyundai’s next hatchback, be it the Veloster or its replacement, adopt an e-turbo? We’d say yes to the future turbo, although the chances of the car being RWD like the concept are slim to none. FWD hatches are cheaper and easier to make. While we’re excited to have caught the RM16 N out at the Nurburgring we aren’t getting our hopes up that it’ll ever be anything more than a concept. Take a look at these spy shots and let us know what you think the future holds for what could be Hyundai’s most daring car ever but probably won’t be.

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