Hyundai revealed its second-generation Veloster at the Detroit motor show overnight, with the sportscar range now topped by a hot N variant that will not be coming to Australia anytime soon.
While the regular Veloster variants are set for a local launch in the second half of this year, the N is an uncertain starter as it will initially be available in left-hand drive form only.
However, Hyundai Australia is still keen for the most potent Veloster yet and has requested that its South Korean parent company add right-hand drive production in the future.
Thus, Aussie buyers will instead see the model in its familiar Veloster and Veloster Turbo guises from the get go, with both employing torque vectoring and four-cylinder petrol engines.
The former uses a 2.0-litre 'Nu' naturally aspirated unit that produces 110kW of power at 6200rpm and 179Nm of torque at 4500rpm, while the latter has a 1.6-litre turbocharged engine that develops 150kW at 6000rpm and 264Nm from 1500 to 4500rpm.
The turbo-petrol unit also has an overboost function that can raise peak torque to 274Nm under maximum acceleration, as well as a synthesised exhaust note that is fed into the cabin for additional aural pleasure.
A six-speed manual gearbox is available with both variants, while the Veloster and Veloster Turbo also have six-speed torque-converter and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission options, respectively.
Alternatively, the Veloster N ups the ante with its 2.0-litre turbo-petrol four that punches out 202kW at 6000rpm and 353Nm from 1450 to 4750rpm (matching the tune of the soon-to-be-released i30 N Performance Pack) and an active exhaust system.
The N is exclusively paired to a close-ratio, short-throw, six-speed manual gearbox with downshift rev-matching function, but an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission is likely to become available later next year.
Three driving modes – 'Normal', 'Sport' and 'Smart' – allow the driver to alter the Veloster's engine, transmission and steering settings, while the N features additional 'N', 'Eco' and 'N Custom' modes.
The Veloster Turbo rides on MacPherson strut front and independent multi-link rear suspensions, with both featuring swaybars and gas-pressurised shock absorbers.
Meanwhile, the N goes a step further with its multi-mode electronically-controllable, reinforced suspension that improves handling alongside a front limited-slip differential.
Styling-wise, the Veloster retains its unconventional three-door hatchback look that features a second passenger-side door, while the overall design has matured and become more aggressive at the same time.
At the front, Hyundai's cascading grille is sharper than before, flanked by cleaner LED headlights and sporty air intakes, as well as a subtle lip spoiler and a creased bonnet.
The side profile is a familiar proposition with its bulging hips and curvaceous glasshouse, while the roofline rakes more steeply towards the rear.
Around the back, the hatch is flatter, the diffuser is more pronounced, and the LED tail-lights are prominent and detailed.
The regular Veloster's design is taken by the N and turned up to 11, with the addition of a mesh grille insert, reshaped air intakes, side skirt extensions, 18- or 19-inch alloy wheels, a hatch-mounted wing spoiler, a motorsport-inspired diffuser and large circular tailpipes, as well as red and black highlights around the body.
Inside, i30 influences are apparent but with added style, with the Veloster's steering wheel and floating touchscreen multimedia system – offered in 7.0- or 8.0-inch sizes – obvious callbacks to the small car.
The centre stack design is sportier with its driver-focused orientation, and metallic and red treatments helping to modernise the interior over its predecessor.
The N's cabin is similar in execution, albeit with a few special touches like an 'N'-themed sports steering wheel, gear lever, instrument cluster and sports seats.
Equipment lists can extend to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, digital radio, satellite navigation with live traffic, a head-up display, wireless smartphone charging and an eight-speaker Infinity sound system, depending on the chosen variant.
A suite of advanced driver-assist technologies are also available, including forward collision warning, auto emergency braking, lane-keep assist, lane departure warning, high-beam assist, driver attention warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control and a reversing camera.
Local pricing and specifications will be announced closer to the Veloster's launch in the second half of the year.