All-new 2018 Hyundai i30 N hot hatch debuts with up to 275 hp

It’s the first product of Hyundai’s N division of high-performance models

The wait is over for Hyundai's first hot hatch in the truest sense of the word.

The automaker has lifted the veils off its i30 N, the first of many models to come from Hyundai's N high-performance division. Based on the current i30 hatchback, the i30 N has been developed in Namyang in Korea and honed at the Nürburgring — even the N logo symbolizes a chicane.

You can distinguish the i30 N from a regular i30 thanks to its sportier body kit that includes redesigned bumpers, a roof spoiler, black side sills and mirror caps, red calipers, and new 18- or 19-inch wheels filling the flared wheel arches. With the 18-inch rims, the i30 N sits 4-mm lower than the car it's based on, with ride height losing a further 4 mm with the 19-inch alloys. There's also a new Performance Blue paint that's exclusive to the i30 N, with five other colors available.

Inside, changes include the addition of an exclusive "N" steering wheel complete with drive mode and rev match buttons, a digital display at the center of the instrument panel, as well as sports seats with increased lumbar and lateral support, upholstered in cloth or suede and leather.

As for performance, it's where things get even more exciting. As with most compact hot hatches, the i30 N is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine available in two power outputs: 250 metric horsepower with the Standard Package and 275 hp with the Performance Package.

In both cases, peak torque is 353 Nm (260 lb-ft), and top speed is limited to 250 km/h (155 mph). Where they differ is in 0-100 km/h acceleration figures: the standard model needs 6.4 seconds, while the range-topping version does it in 6.1 seconds.

Both engine versions are linked to a six-speed manual transmission that sends power to the front wheels. Besides the added power, the i30 N Performance package features exclusive 19-inch Pirelli P-Zero high-performance Hyundai N tires, red N brake calipers, and larger brake discs (18-inch at the front, 17-inch at the rear). In addition, the Electronic Limited Slip Differential (E-LSD) and Variable Exhaust Valve System are standard.

Regardless of the chosen version, the i30 N offers five drive modes: Eco, Normal, Sport, N, and N Custom. They adjust the parameters of the engine, adaptive dampers, Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Electronic Limited Slip Differential (E-LSD), engine sound, steering, and rev-matching. Launch Control is also standard.

The Hyundai i30 N will arrive in European markets by the end of 2017.