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Looks like the pieces from the rumormill continue to come together around the Hyundai Veloster N. In 2018, Korean outlet Motorgraph wrote that Hyundai was working on a Theta III engine for front- and rear-wheel drive, and mid-engine applications. The 2.5-liter turbocharged versions would be rated at 280 hp when turning the front wheels, 300 hp when turning the rears. Fast forward to last week, when a keen spotter sent The Korean Car Blog a picture of a Veloster N prototype with a piece of paper bearing the words “2.5 Turbo Engine T-GDi” taped to its door. That engine would indeed be the Theta III Smartstream turbocharged four-cylinder known to be headed for Hyundai Group products like the Kia Sorento and Genesis GV80 crossovers. The mill makes 277 hp and 311 pound-feet of torque in the Sorento, and 300 hp with 311 lb-ft in the GV80.
Since the Veloster N pulls with its front axle, the question is whether the old intel about 280 hp still holds. If so, and that engine were slotted into a new generation of the Veloster N, 280 hp could be the output served up in the standard model. Currently, the base model makes 250 hp from its 2.0-liter Theta II turbo four-cylinder. That output can be upped to 275 hp with the Performance Package. The honchos in the N division make a point of saying their hot hatches are about more than numbers. Nevertheless, getting to the triple-century mark would make a better story for the buyers who care about spec sheets as much as handling, competitors like the Honda Civic Type R making 306 hp and 295 lb-ft. This 2.5-liter would also be a likely candidate for the coming Tucson N, making 300 hp.
Before we see how this turns out for the Veloster N, the next big step for the three-door is an eight-speed, wet-clutch DCT teased last week. The Korean Car Blog says the new transmission will get extras like an extra oil pump and accumulator, too.