It seems like yesterday when we drove the midship Veloster N RM19 prototype around the Nürburgring and closer to home at the California Proving Ground. Now, Hyundai has further refined its mid-engine sports car, with the latest iteration pumping out more than 800 horsepower from an electric powertrain.
Once again based on—and vaguely shaped like—the Veloster N hot hatchback, the Hyundai RM20e features an electric motor with 810 ponies, to be exact. This makes it significantly more potent than the RM19 with its 385-hp 2.0-liter gas engine. Peak torque skyrockets to 708 lb-ft, and Hyundai estimates the rear-wheel-drive prototype will zip from 0-62 mph in less than three seconds and on to 124 mph in 9.88 seconds.
The new model is a follow-up to the Veloster N eTCR, Hyundai’s first electric race car. The vehicle was developed for the eTCR electric touring car series and debuted at last year’s Frankfurt Motor Show. To optimize aerodynamic performance, the new RM20e features a front splitter and a massive rear air diffuser and wing. Sitting on 19-inch front and 20-inch rear wheels, the sports car maintains a minimum ground clearance of 3.1 inches.
Each of Hyundai N’s prototypes undergo exhaustive testing on the hair-raising Nürburgring Nordschleife. They lap the track up to 480 times in wet and dry conditions, logging over 100,000 miles of severe driving in the span of just four weeks.
Hyundai says it will continue to fine-tune its RM platform for high-performance vehicles. We could see more electrification from this architecture, since it’s compatible with various electrified powertrains. The car is part of the Hyundai Motor Group’s bigger push toward clean vehicles. By 2025, it hopes to introduce 44 “eco-friendly” models across the lineup—some of which we can only hope are as aspirational and bonkers as this RM20e, which is making its first appearance at the Beijing auto show this month.
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