DUBAI– Hyundai is one step closer to finalising the first car from the company’s new high-performance N sub-brand, after two i30 N prototypes completed the gruelling ADAC Zurich 24-hour race at the Nürburgring in Germany. With a global launch of the N brand planned for autumn, the two cars completed a total of 240 laps, covering 6,000km at racing speeds, and proving that the engineering planned for production cars is truly at home on the race track.
“The 24-hour race at the Nürburgring was a real success for us. The two i30 N completed the race without any technical problems and we are really happy with the performance and durability of the cars”, said Albert Biermann, Executive Vice President and Head of Vehicle Test & High Performance Development at Hyundai Motor Company. “With only slight modifications on the two cars, we could really prove the track-capability of the i30 N series model in the most challenging race in the world.”
The ADAC Zurich 24-hour race was an intense and very public test for the engineers developing Hyundai’s N models. The race runs on a 25km circuit that combines the Nürburgring’s infamous Nordschleife, or ‘North Loop’, and parts of the Grand Prix Circuit used for Formula One. It attracts more than 205,000 fans over the course of the weekend, many camping in the forest surrounding the racetrack to stay close to the action. On the track, 156 cars battled in a race where it’s not enough just to be fast, cars and teams also have to be tough enough to survive to the end.
Hyundai entered two i30 N test cars, with race numbers 92 and 95, in the SP3T class for 1.6- to 2.0-liter turbocharged engines. Although one car lost time for repairs after accident, both reached the end of the race without any technical difficulties, with the number-92 car completing 135 laps and number-95 completing 105 laps during the 24 hours. Combined, the cars completed 6,000 kilometres under the toughest race conditions, through day and night, delivering valuable insights into the cars’ chassis, engine performance and overall durability.
In addition, the number-92 Hyundai finished 5th in its class out of 14 contenders, and 52nd overall, including classes for much more powerful race-cars. In all, just 109 cars finished the race.
The two cars were equipped with a 2.0-litre turbo-charged petrol engine and six-speed manual transmission. The same powertrain combination will be applied in the Hyundai i30 N production model. Race modifications focused mainly on the drivers’ safety, featuring a FIA homologated roll cage, a fire extinguisher and a race seat. For enhanced grip and braking performance, the cars were fitted with racing tires and race brakes. The vehicle’s exterior was fitted with a front splitter and rear spoiler to enhance aerodynamics and increase downforce.
The Hyundai i30 N will be Hyundai’s first high-performance model under the N sub-brand. The ‘N’ stands for Namyang, Hyundai Motor’s global R&D Centre in Korea, and for the Nürburgring, home to Hyundai Motor’s European Test Centre. The ‘N’ logo resembles a chicane, representing the ultimate driving experience on winding roads.