Hyundai is gearing up to challenge the Volkswagen GTI

Hyundai is putting the final touches on the i30 N. Aimed right at the Volkswagen GTI and the Ford Focus ST, the i30 N is a monumentally important model because it’s the company’s first true hot hatch, and the first car designed by its performance-focused N division.

A brief teaser film gives us a better idea of what to expect from the i30 N. While the car’s design is hidden by extensive camouflage, we can tell that it adopts a muscular look characterized by a deep front bumper, a model-specific grille accented by a pair of arches, and a roof-mounted spoiler. The i30 N will usher in the styling cues that will trickle down to other N-badged Hyundais in the coming years.

Read more: Hyundai’s Ridgeline-punching pickup takes shape

Earlier rumors suggest that the i30 N will use a 2.0-liter turbo four rated at about 255 horsepower and 228 pound-feet of torque. Official technical details are being kept under wraps for the time being, but a close listen to the i30 N’s exhaust note confirms that it’s equipped with a turbocharger. Front-wheel drive and a six-speed manual transmission will come standard, while a quick-shifting dual-clutch automatic might be added to the lineup a little later in the production run.

The regular Hyundai i30 will be presented to the public later this month during the biennial Paris Auto Show. Speed junkies will need to be patient, because the N-badged model isn’t expected to arrive until next year’s edition of the Geneva Auto Show.

What’s next?

Hyundai is looking into building an even hotter version of the i30 that will fight in the same league as the Volkswagen Golf R and the Ford Focus RS. Power will come from an evolution of the aforementioned turbo four tweaked to deliver well over 300 horsepower. All-wheel drive will keep the power in check. Whether or not the company moves forward with a Golf R-fighting model largely depends on how the regular i30 N is received by the press and the public, Albert Biermann, the head of Hyundai’s N division, revealed in an interview with British magazine Autocar.

Cars

Driving a prototype 2020 Passat at Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground

Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground is where new cars are tested to the breaking point, including the 2020 Passat midsize sedan. Ride along as the new Passat completes testing ahead of its 2019 launch.
Cars

Mercedes-Benz will give the 2020 CLA a star-studded introduction at CES

Mercedes-Benz will introduce the new, second-generation CLA during CES 2019. The design-led member of Mercedes' compact car family will stand out with a fastback-like roof line reminiscent of the CLS and frameless doors.
Cars

The redesigned 2020 Passat shows Volkswagen still believes in sedans

The sedan segment in America is shrinking, but Volkswagen still believes in it. The German firm has released a teaser sketch to preview the redesigned 2020 Passat it will introduce during the 2019 Detroit Auto Show.
Product Review

Inside Maserati's Levante SUV beats the heart of a Ferrari

Maserati’s luxury SUV gets a shot in the arm by way of Ferrari-derived V8 power, but is it enough to go toe-to-toe with the established players in the high performance sport-utility segment? Let’s find out.
Cars

What’s next for in-car entertainment? Audi believes it knows

Audi is bringing two technologies to CES 2019. The first turns a car -- a luxury sedan, in this case -- into a drive-in movie theater. The second is presented as a new entertainment format that turns the journey into the destination.
Product Review

The all-new 3 Series proves BMW can still build a compelling sport sedan

Seat time in the entry-level BMW 330i ($41,425) and M340i xDrive ($54,995) will test the German automaker’s commitment to driving dynamics, powertrain refinement, and cutting edge technology.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Booze-filled ski poles and crypto piggy banks

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Cars

California wants all-electric public bus fleet on its roads by 2040

California approved a regulation that targets an all-electric public bus fleet for the whole state by 2040. The effect of the full implementation of the regulation is equivalent to taking 4 million cars off the road.
Cars

1,000-mph Bloodhound supersonic car project finds a last-minute savior

The Bloodhound supersonic car (SSC) project has found a buyer. The project was going to be disbanded after running out of funds, but its assets were purchased by British businessman Ian Warhurst.
Cars

Ford’s prototype Quiet Kennel uses noise-canceling tech to keep dogs stress-free

Ford is ending 2018 by venturing into the doghouse market. The company's European division has built a kennel equipped with active noise-canceling technology and soundproof walls that help dogs sleep through fireworks.
Mobile

Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.
Emerging Tech

Self-driving dirt rally vehicle offers crash course in autonomous car safety

Georgia Tech's AutoRally initiative pushes self-driving cars to their limit by getting scaled-down autonomous vehicles to drive really, really fast and aggressively on dirt roads. Here's why.
Cars

The best compact cars pack full-size features in fun-size packages

The best compact cars on the market rival their counterparts in many ways, proving that bigger isn’t always better. Here, we've rounded up some of the better options available, including an SUV and an electric alternative.
Cars

Lincoln revives its coolest-ever design feature for limited-edition Continental

The 1961 Lincoln Continental became a design icon thanks to center-opening "coach doors" (also known as "suicide doors"). Lincoln is bringing those doors back for a special edition of the 2019 Continental.