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Hyundai's next Golf fighter comes into focus with an i30 sneak peek

Hyundai will travel to next month’s Paris Auto Show to introduce the brand new i30, a compact hatchback that’s known as the Elantra GT in the United States. The car’s full design is being kept under wraps for the time being, but the South Korean firm has released a handful of teaser images that shed valuable insight into what we can expect from it.

Developed and penned in Europe, the next i30 will usher in the next evolution of Hyundai’s design language. And while the teaser shots do a good job of hiding the i30’s overall design, we can tell that the hatchback’s front end is characterized by a hexagonal grille — called a cascading grille in Hyundai-speak — with a thick chrome frame, swept-back headlights, and slanted LED daytime running lights integrated into the bumper. Judging by the teasers, it wears a much more refined design than the current model.

For enthusiasts, the most interesting member of the next-gen i30 lineup is a hot hatch developed to fight in the same arena as the vaunted Volkswagen GTI. Power will be provided by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 260 horsepower and 228 pound-feet of torque, according to Motor 1. Front-wheel drive and a six-speed manual transmission will come standard, and a dual-clutch automatic transmission will be added to the lineup a little later in the production run.

Read more: Hyundai shows off its wild side with another mid-engined concept

Digital Trends will be on location in the French capital to bring you live images of the next-generation Hyundai i30 as soon as it’s unveiled. The model displayed in Paris will be Euro-spec, but it’s not too unreasonable to assume that the Elantra GT will debut shortly after at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The hot-rodded i30 N will be the first full-blown member of Hyundai’s new, performance-focused N sub-brand. We’ll have to wait until next year to see it in the metal, however, as only the regular model will greet the show-going public in Paris.