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New Hyundai i30 N 2021 spied! Auto hot hatch out for glory against VW Golf GTI

We spotted this camouflaged Hyundai i30 N hatch - and heard it's automatic transmission at work - on the Genesis GV80 launch.

The automatic version of Hyundai’s i30 N hot-hatch has been spied by CarsGuide in its home country of Korea.

The facelifted model will debut not only an entirely new look for the i30 range, but also a new eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission - something the company’s local arm has been hounding headquarters for since the i30 N debuted back in 2018.

There was a new, much larger looking exhaust system on the prototype model we saw. There was a new, much larger looking exhaust system on the prototype model we saw.

The car your intrepid reporter spotted in Korea was certainly an automatic, as the sounds of the gear changes exhibited the typical rapid-fire speed and telltale sound of a dual-clutch performance hatch.

There was also a new, much larger looking exhaust system on the prototype model we saw - with big round exhaust tips rather than the more modest oval-shaped versions on the current car. That could also offer a glimpse into the potential that the new model will have more power and torque than the current one, which has a 2.0-litre turbo-four producing up to 202kW and 378Nm.

The mid-life update of the regular i30 range is set to adopt some of the visual changes you see here, including a bolder grille that is wider and more Euro-looking, as well as sleek new headlights with arrow-style LED daytime running lights.

Want to know about what to expect? Read our full What We Know So Far article!

The new i30 standard range is due to launch in the second half of 2020, with the i30 N models likely later in 2020 or early 2021.