During Motor1’s first drive of the production-ready Sonata today, Hyundai US product planners confirmed the upcoming Sonata N-Line model, and at the same time give us bad news confirming that the Sonata N hot sedan is not in the works.
To clarify, in Hyundai’s world an N model (like the Veloster N) is the ultimate performance variant, meant to be used on-track, where an N-Line isn’t dialed-up quite as much. When they gusy at Motor1.com asked about if there’s any possibility to develop a range-topping Sonata N, a product planner replied, “I don’t see it happening in the future; that’s not our intention with the Sonata.”
Instead, the performance variant will be covered by the Sonata N-Line, which will go on sale next fall. Motor1.com was abled to see an early prototype model today during the national test drive of the regular Sonata, still wearing camouflage. And though we can’t yet talk about how it drives, Hyundai confirmed some of the car’s specs.
The Sonata N-Line will use a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder, making 290 horsepower (216 Kilowatts) and 310 pound-feet of torque. The engine pairs to an eight-speed wet dual-clutch transmission – the same unit that will soon be offered on the Veloster N hot hatchback.
This powertrain is exclusive to the Sonata N-Line, at least for the foreseeable future. You can also see from the photos that N-Line features a quad exhaust layout, and wears bigger 19-inch wheels (the standard car wears 18s). However, the car does not feature a limited-slip differential or all-wheel drive. Power is sent to the front wheels only, with active torque vectoring.