2021 Hyundai i30 N “Face-Shifts” With Enhanced Design and New Wet-Clutch DCT

2021 Hyundai i30 N 13 photos
Photo: Hyundai Motor Group
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The latest releases from the South Korean automaker have been very bold in terms of design, but now Hyundai comes up and botches things a little bit with the newly facelifted i30 N. The styling changes are so conservative that even the color mirrors the shade of the predecessor. Luckily, there are enough changes under the skin to warrant our attention.
The company kicks of its presentation by saying that its “i30 N has been enhanced with a new design focused on performance, emotion and statement.” Bewildered, we searched relentlessly, sifting through the entire gallery – yes, the upgrades are there, but they have been bestowed upon the body in premium German brand-style.

Still, there are some cosmetical changes to the grille, new LED headlamps with V-shaped Daytime Running Lights, as well as a mildly updated rear end for the hatchback. And that’s just about it – Hyundai even admits the i30 Fastback N’s back is untouched (they did not even bother putting a new shot with this version in the gallery).

Of course, as is customary, there are some new alloys, but only for the i30 N with Performance Package – though the 19-inch forged set does make a point in its favor by being 14.4 kg (41.74 lbs.) lighter than the cast alloy option of the predecessor.

Lightweight is the name of the game for the cockpit as well, with Hyundai introducing for the first time the optional N Light Seats, which are 2.2 kg (4.85 lbs.) skinnier than their stock counterparts. What to know what else is new for the interior of the 2021 model year upgrade?! Well, just some Performance Blue detailing on the seat belts...

With the exterior and interior out of the way, we can now focus on what’s new underneath the outer shell. The model comes to the hot hatch (and hot liftback) party with the same engine – a 2.0-liter turbocharged mill. In standard guise it churns out 250 ps and 353 Nm (260 lb. ft.) when mated to a six-speed manual transmission.

Fortunately for us, the engineers have uncovered an additional 30 PS and 39 Nm (29 lb. ft.) for a total of 280 PS and 392 Nm (289 lb. ft.) when customers opt for the Performance Package.

Also, more importantly, Hyundai has now introduced a newly developed wet-type (oil-cooled) eight-speed dual clutch gearbox. It also brings with it three new N performance driving functions: N Grin Shift, N Power Shift and N Track Sense Shift.

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About the author: Aurel Niculescu
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Aurel has aimed high all his life (literally, at 16 he was flying gliders all by himself) so in 2006 he switched careers and got hired as a writer at his favorite magazine. Since then, his work has been published both by print and online outlets, most recently right here, on autoevolution.
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