Hyundai i20 N: small and tasty with 204 hp, road test | Video

It is almost strange to speak, even in 2022, of a small urban sports car. However the hyundai i20 north it’s a rare little gem, a bright spot within the automotive universe increasingly destined to standardize and level out differences. So it’s fortunate that at Hyundai, and more specifically in the N department, there are still those who, out of passion, pleasure and fun, still know how to make (affordable) sports cars. After the good things done with the i30 N and the Veloster N, the Korean manufacturer’s racing department has gotten their hands on the tasty little i20, turning it into a real object of pleasure. Simple, straight, fun Y concreteThese are the pillars of the new Hyundai i20 N.


The Hyundai i20N makes its intentions clear from the first glance. The lower suspension, aesthetic body kit and bright colors with red finishes make it look sportier. The specific 3D effects grid, the mini skirts side panels with “N” logo, the oval chrome tailpipe and the colorful spoiler in the back. A fairly marked approach, as far as the exteriors are concerned, which are more extroverted than, for example, a Fiesta ST or a Polo GTI, direct rivals in the segment.

However, it is not the whole scenario, since the small aerodynamic appendages in the lower area and the spoiler in the rear area help to generate a more downforce, especially at high speeds. The new ones circles counterfeit 18″, with a matte finish help reduce the weight of the unsprung masses and have a specific design. He also reviewed thecut, without the possibility of electronic control but completely adapted by the N department, with dedicated shock absorbers and other improvements in terms of specific angles and, more generally, the work of the suspensions. At the rear, unfortunately, there is only one system with interconnected wheels, more than understandable considering the segment to which it belongs, but the adjustment made by Hyundai technicians is surprising.

So he Size compared to the standard i20, with 4.07 meters long by 1.77 wide and 1.44 m high. Remarkable then the weight, 1,190 kg dry, all of this interesting considering the presence of a “heavy” 1.6 turbocharged 4-cylinder petrol engine on the hood. Neither is the ability of trunkforever 352 litersalmost a record for the segment.


Small but punctual changes also in the interior, on the mold of what has already been done previously in the i30 N. We find the light blue (blue performance), the typical color of Hyundai N, to give liveliness to the cabin. In fact, blue inserts appear on the dashboard, on the air outlets but also on the central tunnel, on the manual gear knob and, above all, on the new N sports steering wheel. The typical ones are in fact present N and N mode keys to be able to select the three standard driving modes (Eco, Normal and Sport) or the two sportier ones (N and N Custom). don’t miss the Red button (REV), dedicated to the insertion of the automatic shotgun.

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Through the new system10.25-inch infotainment, in the corresponding N menu you can configure the various parameters regarding the solidity of the steering, intervention of the differential, sound of the exhaust, reactivity of the engine and automatic side-by-side. It is equipped with all the necessary technologies, such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, via cable, as well as bluetooth streaming and DAB radio. It is not the most reactive on the market but in general it is in line with the segment. there is also a digital instrumentation in front of the steering wheel, with clear graphics and aN-mode specific animationvery picturesque and pleasing to the eye.

The interviewees also present driver assistance systemsable to go as far as second level, with adaptive cruise control, active lane keeping, traffic sign reader, blind spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking and many more. They work quite well, although sometimes it is necessary to intervene on the pedals because the acceleration and braking are too violent. L’equipment of the new Hyundai i20 N appears then rather richwith heated front and rear seats, two USB ports, wireless charging plate for the smartphone, dual-zone automatic climate control and full LED headlights, as well as parking sensors and a rear view camera (albeit with low resolution).


A few corners are enough to enter the Rally stage. On board the i20 N you breathe all his motorsport DNA gained in the experience of the World Rally Championship, in which the Korean manufacturer has achieved several successes, including the world title in 2019 and 2020. The controls of the car, therefore, the direction, the gearbox and the pedals are excellently calibrated to be able to return the right feeling about who sits behind the wheel. Starting from the gearbox, with dry, fast and precise couplings, capable of satisfying those who are looking for a “masculine” command. Using the special button on the steering wheel, you can set the automatic shotgun, useful for giving explosions and explosions from the exhaust when shifting or downshifting.

The structure is also remarkable, surprisingly rigid, more so than other sports C-segments, but at the same time able to digest the undulations of the asphalt well, thus restoring a phenomenal road behavior. He is also helped by N self-locking differential with limited slip, capable of distributing the torque between the two front wheels so as not to lose a millimeter of trajectory and to be damned efficient.

Even entering the corner, we felt the inside wheel brake slightly to help pivot around it, thus generating a kind of angular momentum and making it easier for us to corner in the best possible way. The rear faithfully follows the direction printed with the front, which is always precise and never understeers. Leaving the gas in the middle of the curve, one can thus appreciate a slight oversteer behavior, essential to close the paths, but never invasive or dangerous. On certain occasions, the i20 N is also able to lift the inside rear wheel in the cornerit is so rigid and well ‘planted’ in the ground.

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note of merit forbreak systemreally powerful and tireless, even after long sessions of aggressive highway driving. At the front are two-piston floating calipers with 320mm self-ventilated discs (262mm at the rear). We have not had the opportunity to take it to the track but the feedback obtained is definitely positive. Immediate, modular and well capable of handling even the high temperatures of summer without problems. The lever handbrake is then a delight for those who love to attack the tightest corners hard, like a true rally driver.

And finally we get to the engine, perhaps the least exciting aspect of the car, despite being mechanically very sophisticated. Their 1.6 TGDI 4 cylinder turbo petrol It would be perfect, if there were no direct rival called 1.5 Ecoboost of Ford origin. The remainder of the 4 cylinders, with 204 hp Y 275nm of maximum torque makes it decidedly corpulent and full of “back” at medium speed (already from 2,250 rpm), until giving a Considerable extension at over 4,000 rpm, where it surprises with its ability to touch the limiter without being affected in terms of thrust. It almost looks like a VTEC for delivery mode.

However, the great explosiveness in the highs is paid for in the lower zone, where more reactivity and speed would be required, with a mixture of turbo-lag (more than normal) and perhaps somewhat long relationships for the manual gearbox. Not that it ever seems slow, in fact, with solos 6.2 seconds declared the 0-100km/h Y 230km/h of maximum speed, the data is truly remarkable. It’s more of a feel issue, where more tenacity and elasticity would be required in the slower phases, like having too much inertia in the turn or being slightly electronically throttled.



  • ENGINE: 1.6 TGDI, 4-cylinder turbo gasoline
  • POWER: 204 hp (150 kW)
  • TORQUE: 275 Nm between 1,750 and 4,000 rpm
  • Front-wheel drive
  • GEARBOX: manual, 6 gears with double automatic
  • SUSPENSIONS: Front MacPherson struts, rear torsion bar


  • LENGTH: 4,075mm
  • WIDTH: 1,775mm
  • HEIGHT: 1,440mm
  • PITCH: 2,580mm
  • LUGGAGE: 352 liters
  • WHEELS: 18″
  • TIRES: 215/40 R18 89 Y
  • WEIGHT: 1,190 Kg (1,265 in running order)


  • TOP SPEED: 230km/h
  • ACCELERATION 0-100 Km/h: 6.2 seconds
  • CONSUMPTION: 6.9 l/100 km (WLTP combined cycle)
  • CO2 EMISSIONS: 158 grams per km (WLTP mixed)
  • STEERING RADIUS: 5.2 meters

PRICE: from 28,700 euros;


A car energeticbright and robust, the i20 N, capable of instilling a sense of solidity and security that is not taken for granted in a car in this segment. It clearly stands out in driving sensations., with a gearbox capable of making us appreciate each gear change, an impressive grip on the road and a rather masculine address, capable of imparting great directionality to the front end. It would lack a little more pull to the engine, powerful and capable of giving a great push especially at high revolutions, but in the end we do not complain about the about 11 km/l registered with rather cheerful walks and not like an “old man with a hat”. Too bad that the digital fuel gauge often works in an unclear way, going up or down in a way that is not proportional to the liters in the tank or the liters supplied.

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Perhaps the quality of the rear view camera and the responsiveness of the infotainment system could be improved, as well as the sensitivity of the directionsometimes too heavy in N mode, but then picks up (with interest) as soon as you hit the throttle, with a sound and feel now rare to find in new cars. A perfect car for those looking for this type, able to entertain and, if necessary, reinvent itself as an everyday city car, never too extreme and binding, if you can live with a slightly stiff setup and a shift/clutch unit not really designed for city traffic.

the price? Let’s go from 28,700 euros VAT includedof the price list, a figure in accordance with its performance, the standard equipment with the N Performance package (the only one available in Italy) and the current automotive context. Better than the Fiesta ST? It is difficult to find an objective answer: many times it is based on tastes, sensations and personal opinions. The Fiesta is perhaps more ‘playful’, with a set-up that allows more corrections, a more incisive differential and a more sparkling engine. The i20 N bounces back with extremely immersive sound, phenomenal road holding and a high-rev boost that the Fiesta lacks. To you the arduous sentence.


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