Whether or not enthusiasts want to accept the fact, hot hatchbacks are and will always be a niche market. Performance is the name of the game — hence why we have a Veloster N — but that’s not enough to sustain a sub-brand on its own. No, you need to branch out, and that’s exactly what Hyundai is doing. In fact, the automaker just choreographed its plans to aggressively expand its N performance brand well beyond the Veloster.
We already know it was coming to some other cars. The Sonata and Elantra, for example, are both getting new “N Line” variants. Think of these as a sort of diet N, where you get the sport looks without committing to more power. Then there are what Hyundai itself calls the purist N models. These are cars like the Veloster and the upcoming Elantra N shown below. Now, Hyundai’s hot sedan should pack the same 275 horsepower, 2.0-liter turbo engine as the Veloster N, but the company has yet to confirm exact details there.
Over the next two years, the Hyundai N performnace brand will grow to seven total models. According to the official statement, that includes four N Line models, as well as three full-on N models. That includes what we know about so far:
- Veloster N (already in production) — Prices start from $32,250
- Sonata N Line (arriving this month, pricing announced) — Prices start from $34,195
- Elantra N Line (arriving in December) and Elantra N (coming soon)
- Tucson N Line (announced today, arriving spring 2021)
More N Performance SUVs
While Hyundai seems to be building out into sports sedans, SUVs are where the performance market has really exploded in the past few years. To that end, the 2022 Tucson N Line emerged as another entrant Monday. That will join the revamped Tucson model, including a new Hybrid, covering the spread from efficiency-minded buyers to enthusiasts. No specific details are available yet, but it’s not beyond reason to assume this hot crossover will use the same 2.5-liter turbocharged engine as the Sonata N Line. That means we should see a Tucson with 290 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque pretty soon.
As for the other two SUVs, we can make an estimated where Hyundai N will go from here. In fact, the 2022 Hyundai Kona debuted for Korea back in September with a sporty N Line model. Like the other models, you’ll see the 1.6-liter turbo engine with around 200 horsepower make an appearance with sportier looks. Since the other is identically-sized, we can venture a guess that a full-blown Kona N may arrive in a couple years, as well.
That just leaves the Santa Fe and the Palisade outside the scope of Hyundai’s recent performance kick. Will either of those get the super sporty treatment? It’s possible with the Santa Fe, though it’s unlikely Hyundai’s more elegant, three-row family hauler will get a performance variant. As entertaining as that would be.
We’ve only had seat time with the Veloster so far, but we do have more on the Elantra models coming soon, so stay tuned!