Hyundai Ioniq 5 N: first look at electric hot hatch arriving in 2023

The first electric car to wear Hyundai’s N performance badge is likely to get a dual-motor powertrain for all-wheel drive and close to 600bhp

This is our best look yet at the new Hyundai Ioniq 5 N ahead of the electric hot hatch’s world debut in 2023. The images were part of a video on the electrified future of Hyundai’s N performance division, and showed the Ioniq 5’s signature pixel LED headlights have been paired with a more aggressive front bumper and additional air intakes.

These air intakes should help with cooling the car’s battery and electric motors, while vents ahead of the front wheels will direct airflow along the Ioniq 5 N’s flanks.

Earlier this year, the tuned version of the Ioniq 5 family car was spotted testing on the Nurburgring race circuit in Germany, with our spy shots confirming Ioniq 5 N is wider and sits lower than the regular car, and will ride on a set of larger, wider alloy wheels, too. 

The rear also gets air vents on either side of the bumper, plus an extended rear spoiler and a rear diffuser to reduce lift at high speeds. We’ve yet to see inside the Ioniq 5 N, but we expect it’ll receive deep sport seats, a new steering wheel and tweaked graphics on the digital driver’s display as we’ve seen in Hyundai’s petrol-powered hot hatches like the i20 N and i30 N. The N division’s signature Performance Blue paint is also likely to be available.

Technical details for the Ioniq 5 N are still thin on the ground, but Hyundai’s latest RN22e concept does provide us with some hints at what’s possible. The RN22e is a high-performance version of the Ioniq 6 saloon, featuring a 77.4kWh battery and two electric motors making 569bhp and 740Nm of torque; enough for a 0-62mph time of well under four seconds.

This powertrain could be carried over to the Ioniq 5 N almost unchanged, considering its Kia EV6 GT sister model also uses a dual-motor, all-wheel-drive setup producing 577bhp, and is capable of 0-62mph in just 3.5 seconds. We expect the Ioniq 5 N to come close to the EV6 GT’s 265-mile range, too.

Like the RN22e, the Ioniq 5 N will be built for track days, as well as daily road use, so other technology that could filter through includes torque vectoring, weight reduction thanks to 3D-printed parts and heavily upgraded brakes. The radical, track-focused EV concept also features ‘N Sound+’ – a system that pumps artificial sound into the cabin, like the e-ASD system that's debuting in the Ioniq 6 – and ‘N e-shift’, which is designed to mimic the feeling of gearchanges.

The RN22e concept gives us our best look yet at what a high-performance version of the Ioniq 6 saloon could look like, if Hyundai was tempted to take on the BMW i4 M50 or Tesla Model 3 Performance. Sadly, the brand hasn’t yet confirmed whether it’ll make a roadgoing Ioniq 6 N based on the RN22e.

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