Hyundai’s recently-formed N performance division will likely use a petrol-electric powertrain for its halo model, according to Autocar. Sources within the Korean automaker told the magazine that the range-topper will likely be priced a little lower than the Polestar 1 as well as other hybridised performance GT cars, it added.
“A halo car remains in our plans. It won’t come for a while yet but we know we have to make one. We are now looking at some alternative powertrains and some different options on what kinds of vehicle we might deliver and when,” said vice president of high-performance vehicle and motorsport division Gyoo-Heon Choi.
In terms of powertrain, development for the forthcoming N halo car may explore gains not just from the internal combustion engine but also from more powerful electric drive, as well as experimental fuel cells.
“Conventional four-wheel drive is an option for the [halo] car, but it is very old technology. I would prefer to think about a front-engined hybridised platform with a rear-mounted electric motor; it’s an appealing direction for us,” Choi continued.
The challenge is in making the eventual product affordable as well as credible in the way it defines any N car, said Klaus Köster, director of high performance vehicles at Hyundai’s European Technical Centre.
“It cannot only be capable of just a handful of laps of a track before losing power – but also cannot be pitched at a price of hundreds of thousands of euros. The people who buy those kinds of cars are not Hyundai customers; not yet, at any rate,” Köster said.
Even drawing from Hyundai’s own parts inventory, this still allows for a very potent combination, such as mating a Hyundai N four-cylinder turbo mill to an electric powertrain from the Kona Electric.