Hyundai is preparing to give its first dedicated electric car, the Ioniq 5 SUV, the N treatment. What about its second, the Ioniq 6 sedan?
Hyundai revealed the 2023 Hyundai Ioniq 6 earlier this week, as the second model in the company’s new Ioniq electric vehicle range, alongside the sold-out Ioniq 5 medium SUV.
With the Ioniq 5 settled in on showroom floors, Hyundai has passed it over to the brand’s N division to create a performance version, due on sale in 2023 or 2024. So what if an Ioniq 6 N was to follow suit?
Hyundai has not confirmed if such a car is in the works – but with the company’s chief designer telling UK media the Ioniq 6 would “make a great performance model”, and the Ioniq 6’s E-GMP platform offering plug-and-play powertrains, an N variant could be on the cards.
Imagined in here by Drive’s digital expert Theophilus Chin, the hypothetical Ioniq 6 N follows a similar visual path to its Hyundai N range-mates, with sportier bumpers and skirts, red accents, bigger alloy wheels, and an enlarged rear spoiler.
The tarmac-hugging body kit includes a set of wheel arch flares – designed to house the super-sized 22-inch wheels, wrapped in wider Michelin tyres – while the triangular centre light of the i30 N hatch features here as a reflector in the bumper (like the i30 Sedan N).
The N visual overhaul hasn’t forgotten the need to maximise electric range; the Genesis-derived wheels are designed with aerodynamics in mind. The N model also scores a larger version of the standard Ioniq 6’s ‘whale tail’ rear spoiler.
Under the sporty sheet metal would be a high-performance powertrain to match the looks – and thanks to the Ioniq 6’s E-GMP modular electric architecture, there are plenty of options in the parts bin.
Hyundai is yet to confirm how much power top-spec versions of the standard Ioniq 6 will develop – at least for a few more weeks – though rumours suggest the dual motors and 77.4kWh battery from the Kia EV6 GT-Line AWD, offering 239kW.
For an Ioniq 6 N, the most likely option is the pair of upgraded electric motors from the EV6’s flagship GT variant, developing 430kW and 740Nm.
With the Ioniq 6’s slipperier shape and (most likely) lighter body, it could shave a few tenths off the EV6 GT’s 3.5-second 0-100km/h time, for a near-three-second dash able to scare BMW M5s and keep up with (some) Teslas.
The Ioniq 5 N is expected to use a version of this powertrain, so Hyundai might opt to give a potential Ioniq 6 N a bit more grunt – possibly closer to 450kW or 470kW, creating a Hyundai sedan capable of a 0-100km/h time starting with a two.
Backing up the speed would be an overhauled chassis, with adaptive suspension, the EV6 GT’s electronic limited-slip rear differential, larger performance brakes, and stiffer springs and dampers to keep body roll in check on the race track.
A 2023 Hyundai Ioniq 6 N has not been confirmed for production – however such a model does appear to be under consideration, with Hyundai chief designer SangYup Lee telling Auto Express the Ioniq 6 “would also make a great performance model”.
Alex Misoyannis has been writing about cars since 2017, when he started his own website, Redline. He contributed for Drive in 2018, before joining CarAdvice in 2019, becoming a regular contributing journalist within the news team in 2020. Cars have played a central role throughout Alex’s life, from flicking through car magazines as a young age, to growing up around performance vehicles in a car-loving family.