Monday, July 15, 2024
NewsHyundai is Working on a Smaller Electric N Model

Hyundai is Working on a Smaller Electric N Model

A smaller and more affordable electric Hyundai N model is in the works.

  • Few details are known, but this model could be entirely new or an N version of the Kona Electric.

  • The 800-volt battery architecture will be used in this model to ensure sufficient performance and range on the track.

  • This model might be built on the new IMA platform.

In an interview with Auto Express, Albert Biermann, technical advisor and former head of R&D for Hyundai, has confirmed the South Korean automaker is working on a smaller and more affordable electric N model to join the new Ioniq 5N.

While the Ioniq 5N offers an impressive level of performance with its 641-horsepower dual-motor drivetrain, it makes buyers pay for it, with a projected base price in the United States close to $70,000. This places it in the company of other high-performance models from more prestigious rivals such as Audi or BMW.

According to Biermann, Hyundai needs to deliver a more affordable electric performance model, saying “Otherwise, we leave our customers in the dark. We have to come down with something smaller and more affordable”.

Very few details about this future N model are known at the moment, except that it is likely to use the same 800-volt battery architecture as the Ioniq 5 and Ioniq 6.

Indeed, Biermann says that a cheaper 400-volt system would not be suitable for the level of performance expected out of an N car since it would require four times more cooling to provide peak power for long enough to sustain track use.

This seems to be an issue since using the expensive 800-volt electrical system in a smaller car would prevent Hyundai from reducing its price to a competitive level. One solution could be to use the 800-volt system only on the N version and install a 400-volt architecture in the mass-market variant, but Biermann says that doing so might not make financial sense in the B-segment.

In addition, smaller batteries such as those used in the B and C-segments targeted by Hyundai might not provide satisfactory range under heavy track use, which means the N-variant could require a larger unit, further limiting the potential for cost savings.

As the Ioniq 5 and Ioniq 6 are the smallest vehicles that were engineered to use the current E-GMP platform, according to Biermann, this suggests that the upcoming N model will use the new IMA platform, which will be able to support both 400 and 800-volt electrical systems.

As mentioned before, we don’t know much about this future small N model, but we do know that Hyundai is working on an N version of the Ioniq 6 sedan, which was previewed by the RN22e concept last year. This model is expected to be even more powerful than the Ioniq 5N hatchback.

While what we’ve heard seems to point towards an entirely new model, it is worth remembering that the new Kona electric could receive its own N variant, which would likely be more affordable than the Ioniq 5N.

Source: Auto Express

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