Hyundai is working on a “crazy” sports car that has largely been kept under wraps until now – and it’s likely to have hybrid or pure electric power. Speaking at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show, the global boss of research and development for Hyundai, Albert Biermann, told CarAdvice there was “something special” coming next year in the performance-car space.
It has previously been speculated Hyundai would introduce a rival to the Toyota 86 and Nissan 370Z, but with much more power. Hyundai showed a two-door concept called the HCD-9 (pictured above and below) way back in 2013.
When asked if Hyundai would ever put its performance N badge on a pure electric car, Mr Biermann said: “That’s a little bit further down the road (although) we did already some exercises. There is a very crazy car coming next year.” When asked if it was a sports-car, Mr Biermann said: “We continue our N story”.
Two years ago, Hyundai chief designer Luc Donckerwolke, who styled Lamborghinis before working for the Korean brand, said “we are definitely doing it” when asked about the possibility of a two-door performance car.
“I can’t tell you much more about it, but we are definitely doing it,” he told news.com.au at the time. Hyundai research and development executive Woong-Chul Yang, said at the time: “We are very much interested in (a sports car). That’s something our brand needs”.
In the January 2018 interview he said the sports-car could wear an N badge or have even higher performance. “The people working at N will be working on (our sports car), but how we put it in the N or maybe above N … it’s pretty high performance. It’s serious.”
However, the biggest clue that the “crazy” sports-car could have an electric boost came from Mr Biermann during his speech at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show. “We are developing high performance battery electric and fuel cell electric prototypes in partnership with (Croatian electric specialist) Rimac as part of our effort to introduce 44 eco-friendly models worldwide by 2025,” said Mr Biermann.
“Our strategy prepares Hyundai N to meet the electrification and mobility challenges that all manufacturers will face in the years to come. For Hyundai these challenges create significant opportunities to demonstrate our leadership,” he added.