Hyundai running 3 cars at Nurburgring 24h race

Hyundai says it plans to run three cars—two of them production-based—at the Nurburgring 24h race as part of the development of its N performance sub-brand.

N-tuned versions of the i30 1.6 Turbo and Veloster production cars, as well as an i30 2.0 Turbo development car, will participate in the four-day event that runs May 26-29 on the grueling 20.8-kilometre Nurburgring-Nordschleife.

"This Nurburgring 24h race provides the ideal test bed for our motorsport-inspired N sub-brand development and a key part of our ‘born at Namyang, honed at Nurburgring’ performance-car ethos," Hyundai vehicle test and performance development head, Albert Biermann, said in a statement.

"The technological inspiration and experience gained from this extreme testing will accelerate our development of high-performance, fun-to-drive N models."

The i30 1.6 Turbo will focus on defending its 2015 class win, while the i30 2.0 Turbo development car will "concentrate on enhancing understanding of performance technologies" ahead of the N brand launch.

Hyundai says it is entering with a particular focus on the latter car's newly-developed engine, as well as its "enhanced" transmission, suspension and dampers.

The development car and two production cars that will compete in the race was built for Hyundai by Germany-based race car designer and Hyundai dealership Schumann.

"While the Hyundai Motor team is keen on achieving a strong result, the core focus of the development car is to gather motor-racing experience to enhance future mass production of N sub-brand performance cars," the automaker said in a statement.

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