Last March, when Hyundai presented the new-generation 2021 Elantra sedan, it announced that a sportier N Line Series version would soon be available.
Today, the Korean automaker gave a taste of that upcoming variant. Technical details are still pending, but we know that the Elantra N Line will benefit from under-the-hood and chassis-level improvements, not to mention distinctive styling features.
Remember that at Hyundai, the new N Line product line refers to the sportier versions of the existing models. However, we're not talking about the truly performance-oriented versions the company produces as well, which carry simply the N designation. For instance, the Veloster N.
For Hyundai, this will be the first N Line version of the Elantra sedan. The automaker does already produce an N Line variant of the 5-door Elantra (GT). The latter's mechanics are the same as those of the old Elantra Sport, which leaves room for speculation as to what will equip the new variant, which essentially replaces the Sport trim.
Mechanically, the Elantra Sport benefited from a 1.6L, 4-cylinder turbocharged engine producing 201 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. That unit was mated to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. The model was also briefly offered with a 6-speed mechanical transmission as an option.
The Elantra Sport also featured subtle styling changes in comparison with the regular model, both inside and out, as well as improvements to its braking and suspension systems. The most significant change was the adoption of an independent multi-link rear suspension instead of the torsion beams used on previous versions.
The next Elantra N Line should be in the same vein, but still slightly less performance-minded than a model like the Veloster N.
This is also the case for the Sonata N Line announced by Hyundai at the end of 2019. A more-powerful engine, a dual-clutch transmission and minor suspension modifications make this variant more incisive than a regular Sonata, without it being an N model in its own right.
Hyundai has plans for more N Line products. A Tucson N Line was unveiled in 2019, although Hyundai hasn't considered introducing it in North America... yet. The firm is also working on a Kona N, and the new Venue small SUV could also receive the N treatment.
As for the redesigned 2021 Elantra sedan, it’s set to hit dealerships before the end of 2020 and the N Line variant should follow shortly thereafter.