By on November 7, 2019

In April, Hyundai confirmed it would introduce a performance-oriented Sonata sometime in 2020. The model was supposed to yield over 275 horsepower, leaving many wondering if it would hail from the brand’s N Division. Hyundai later said it would actually be supplying an N-Line car, placing it a step below the fully fledged N. But this turned out to be good news — because it leaves room for a more powerful Sonata in the lineup.

While the vehicle’s existence is still speculative, albeit probable, Korean Car Blog reports that a midsize N is actually in development. It claims the Sonata N will be be released next fall, with the N-Line debuting at this year’s LA Auto Show. 

According to leaks intercepted by KCB, the Sonata N will apparently utilize a 2.5-liter turbo four-cylinder and a wet dual-clutch transmission with eight speeds. Based on the information provided, output should be in the ballpark of 300 horsepower and 311 ft-lb of torque.

From the Korean Car Blog:

The specification of the Sonata N’s 2.5 T-GDi engine will be similar to the SmartStream G2.5 FR T-GDi engine, which was recently unveiled at the 2019 Hyundai Kia Motors Powertrain Conference.

It has a maximum output of 304 horsepower [sic] and a maximum torque of 43.0kgm, and uses dual injection that uses both port injection and direct injection.

In particular, the company focused on thermal management compared to existing turbo engines by applying an electric CVVT system, a continuously variable oil pump, and a water-cooled intercooler.

The spec sheet actually had it at 304 PS (not horsepower), but it doesn’t make much difference in this instance, especially since Hyundai hasn’t confirmed anything. It also creates a bit of confusion due to earlier (conflicting) rumors suggesting the N-Line Sonata might also make  of use a turbocharged 2.5-liter motor. Since the automaker never officially clarified which performance sedan it was talking about, it may have been hinting at the existence of a full-blown N the whole time.

Base models are slated to get a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter making 191 hp and 181 foot-pounds, with an optional turbocharged 1.6-liter four (180 horsepower, 195 pound-feet) for uplevel trims.

We figured N-Line Sonatas would only make a bit more power, choosing instead to place greater emphasis on handling, but Hyundai engineers have been pretty explicit that the vehicle’s goal was 275 hp. Considering there’s already a model with exactly that much oomph (the Veloster N with Performance Pack), maybe Hyundai will slot in its 2.0-liter turbo. But now we’re just guessing.

Fortunately, we won’t have to wait long before this all comes together. The 2020 Sonata N-Line is rumored to debut in Los Angeles later this month. Assuming KBC is right about the N, expect to see it Q3 of next year.

Image: Hyundai

[Images: Hyundai]

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