Hyundai unleashes its i20 N pocket rocket

Hyundai has unveiled the new i20 N, a 204 horsepower pocket rocket that is sadly not earmarked for Singapore

Photos: Hyundai


Hyundai has unleashed its latest addition to its N performance range, although car enthusiasts here would be disappointed as the new i20 N compact hot hatchback is not currently earmarked for Singapore.

It’s a shame though, as the i20 N holds plenty of promise for the enthusiast seeking for thrills in a small package. The i20 N packs a 1.6-litre turbocharged GDi engine that produces 204hp and 275Nm of torque, in a car that weighs just 1,190kg.

More importantly, the i20 N comes with a six-speed manual gearbox as standard, as well as a limited slip differential, much like its big brother, the i30 N. The result is a car that can sprint from 0-100km/h in 6.7 seconds, and hit a top speed of 230km/h.

Hyundai also cheekily dubs the i20 N’s driving mode selection system the “N Grin Control System”, and it offers up to five selectable modes, ranging from Normal, Eco, Sport, N, and N Custom. They tweak various setting such as the engine response, Electronic Stability Control intervention, exhaust noise and steering weight. Drivers can activate their own customised preset settings via buttons on the steering wheel, and the ESC can also be completely switched off.

The i20 N also features rev matching, selectable via a steering wheel button, as well as launch control. The chassis has been reinforced and stiffened at 12 different points over a standard i20 hatchback, while the suspension and brakes have also been substantially upgraded as well.

Cosmetically, the i20 N is some 10mm lower than a regular i20, and the usual go-faster bits like large air intakes up front, sporty side skirts and a rear roof spoiler and lower bumper diffuser are all present and correct. The interior features unique sport seats, and N Performance parts like the steering wheel, gear knob and pedals.

Cars like the i20 N are targeted at enthusiasts seeking for fun on the cheap, but the market for these cars in Singapore have effectively evaporated in recent years. Even the much-loved flag-bearer for this segment, the Suzuki Swift Sport, is no longer available here on an official basis, as tightened emissions taxation measures have effectively made these cars cost uncompetitive in our current market.

about the author

Ben Chia
CarBuyer's senior staff writer went out to explore the Great Big World, including a stint working in China (despite his limited Mandarin). Now he's back, ready to foist upon you his takes on everything good and wonderful about the automotive world.