Hyundai continues to demonstrate its performance aspirations with the introduction of its latest Racing Midship (RM) concept, the Veloster-based RM16.
The latest vision from Hyundai’s “N” stable (the sub-brand launched last fall to show Hyundai’s commitment to responsive, intuitive performance vehicles), the RM16 sets the stage for the first Hyundai N model. It is also the latest version of the Veloster concept series that began in 2012 with the RM14.
The RM mandate was to develop core high-performance technologies with the intent that form would ultimately follow function. In other words, make the technology work and then the packaging will follow suit. The “suit” in this case is a 2-seat sporty car with styling optimized for aerodynamics in a low-and-wide body. The aggressive front end is minimized for wind blocking, with slim headlamps that allow the hood to slope lower, and large air intakes to provide air to the high-performance 2.0-litre turbocharged direct injected 4-cylinder engine. The Theta engine here provides 295 hp and is again linked to a 6-speed manual transaxle (as were the RM14 and RM15 before it).
Also identical is the weight distribution (43% front; 57% rear), which has been deemed ideal in this package for balance on the track. The centre of gravity sits a mere 500 mm off the ground (less than 20 inches).
“RM models will continue to play an important role as the ‘rolling lab’ in the development of our future high-performance ‘N’ cars,” said Albert Biermann, Head of Hyundai’s Vehicle Test & High-Performance Development.
Another example is lightweight construction, with the RM16 boasting an aluminum space frame provides a rigid platform for all the performance add-ons, and carbon fibre reinforced plastic covers it all in a durable, lightweight and malleable shell.
Other new features over the previous RM concept are an electric supercharged to boost power and improve responsiveness, electronic limited slip differential, an electronically bolstered seat that adjust support according to cornering forces, and an automatically deploying rear spoiler to provide the proper downforce and reduce wind drag according to car speed.
And to finish off on the right note, an electronically variable exhaust provides a powerful tone in response to acceleration.
“Our RM16 and Hyundai N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo concepts are inspired by the passion for performance, that you will soon see evolve into our first N model,” concluded Woong-chul Yang, Vice Chairman and Head of Hyundai R&D Center.
Introduced at last fall’s Frankfurt Motor Show, the N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo is a hydrogen 872-hp all-wheel drive electric virtual concept created for the new Gran Turismo Sport video game for Playstation 4. Its lightweight construction gives it a power to weight ration to rival the most super of supercars, with a jet car look that makes it appear as though it flies over the road.
Hyundai says it represents N’s future potential and the company’s passion for performance, though it will only be drivable in the virtual world.