A 247-hp Hyundai Kona N crossover could be a thing

Hyundai’;s N Performance sub-brand has its sights on the Kona, the automaker’;s brand-new compact crossover, for its possible next makeover. If it meets with the approval of Hyundai brass, it’;ll reportedly do 247 horsepower courtesy of the 2.0-liter turbo engine borrowed from the i30 N.

Hyundai’;s N performance boss Albert Biermann tells Auto Express he has instructed his engineers to develop a test mule version of the Kona to consider for production by the end of the decade. “I’;ve told them to build the car and we’;ll see what happens with it getting approved. It has to be the i30 N powertrain, really,” Biermann told the British website, adding that engineers could give the Kona different suspension and steering specs.

The i30 N is Hyundai’;s not-for-America performance fastback and the N division’;s first offering. It’;s based off the i30, an overseas version of the Elantra GT, offered in 3 body styles — hatchback, wagon and “fastback” sedan — and fitted with a 6-speed manual transmission. It has 2 engine options: the aforementioned 2.0-liter 4-cylinder and a version generating 271 horsepower that will power the Veloster N, which will come stateside.

By contrast, the Kona has 2 engine possibilities: a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder that makes 147 hp and 132 pound-feet of torque, or a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine that does 175 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. So the N upgrade would represent a significant boost in power over either of those engines.

What other features could a Kona N offer? It could go the N route with a large grille, red-trimmed undercarriage, specialty badging and interior trim and suspension upgrades. Auto Express says upgrades could include a rear diffuser, small roof spoiler and exposed rear tailpipes.

Hyundai has sold 5,874 units of the Kona through April since going on sale in February. It also plans an all-electric version for 2019 that offers a long-range version with 292 miles of driving range, up from the base model’;s 186 miles.

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