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More torque, new eight-speed wet DCT coming to 2021 Hyundai Veloster N

Hyundai is enhancing the Veloster N for the 2020 model year.

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai is upgrading the most performance-focused variant of its Veloster lineup, the Veloster N. The 2021 Hyundai Veloster N will have a new available transmission attached to its turbocharged 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine.

The new N 8-speed wet dual-clutch transmission (N DCT) is equipped with electronic actuators that operate the double clutch. It is designed to provide ride comfort, fuel efficiency, and fun - something the Veloster N excels at in its 2020 variant with the standard six-speed manual gearbox.

2021 Hyundai Veloster NThe wet DCT allows for more torque off the line.Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

The N DCT uses oil to improve lubrication and cooling performance in the transmission allowing it to achieve higher torque. A typical DCT is run dry. N Grin Shift increases torque by seven percent from 36.0 to 38.5kgf-m by allowing turbocharger overboost and maximizes transmission response for 20 seconds.

Hyundai says that the new transmission allows the car to accelerate from zero to 100 km/h in 5.6 seconds and delivers "video game-like features". When the car engages with more than 90 percent throttle, N Power Shift activates to mitigate torque reduction off the line by upshifting and delivering more power to the car's wheels.

Think of it as a smart shifting solution for today's modern driver.

N Track Sense Shift can activate automatically when conditions require to improve gearing and shift timing in the same ways race cars do. The car's rev matching, launch control, and overboots functionality has also been updated.

For the 2021 model year, the car also receives a larger, 8-inch infotainment system and JBL premium audio sound system. It comes with a long list of standard safety technology and has new available N Light Sports Bucket Seats that are wrapped in Alcantara upholstery and weight about 2 kg less than traditional seats.

Hyundai developed Veloster N at its global R&D center in Korea and tested it at its Nürburgring-based testing center in Germany.

Veloster N will first go on sale in South Korea this month followed by other markets. The 2020 model started at $27,400 and this new variant is expected to be priced similarly.

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The IIHS may increase the speeds it uses to test advanced driver aids.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recently announced that it is considering changing the speeds it uses to test vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention systems. The agency currently tests the systems at 12 and 25 mph, but says that the speeds don't accurately represent the types of crashes the safety tech is meant to prevent.

Front crash preventionwww.youtube.com

Automatic emergency braking (AEB) is designed to notify of a possible collision and help respond with automatic application of braking. Just like a human using the brake pedal, it can stop the car, but higher speeds make it difficult to stop in time. The new tests would be conducted at 35 to 45 mph, which is the range where a large number of rear-end crashes occur. As Automotive News noted, an IIHS study showed 43 percent of rear-end crashes occur at speeds of 45 mph or less, so it's important to have a test that shows how well the tech performs at those levels.

A whopping 85 percent of 2022 vehicles earned a "Superior" rating in the current testing regime, so the IIHS will remove it from 2023 testing and Top Safety Pick award evaluations. Their view is that, since the majority of vehicles meet the criteria, it's no longer an accurate way of evaluating performance. In its place, the agency introduced a night test for automatic emergency braking systems that will begin next year.

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The 2023 Sportage Hybrid starts at around $28,000.

Kia

Kia's moving full steam ahead to an all-electric future, but the automaker's intermediate models should not be overlooked. Kia and Hyundai do hybrids as well as anyone, and the 2023 Sportage Hybrid is coming soon with new tech, updated styling, and a value-forward price. The 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid goes on sale in spring.

2023 Kia Sportage HybridThe Sportage Hybrid delivers up to 39 mpg.Kia

Kia offers the Sportage hybrid in three trims: The $28,505 LX, $32,205 EX, and $37,405 SX-Prestige. All models come with a turbocharged 1.6-liter engine and a 44kW electric motor that combine to produce 226 horsepower. A six-speed automatic transmission with a rotary shifter is standard, and all-wheel drive become standard at the EX trim. The powertrain is efficient for an SUV, delivering up to 39 mpg when paired with front-wheel drive.

Kia says the Sportage Hybrid's interior features a 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen and a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster for almost 25 inches of display. Standard tech is generous, and includes wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There's also plenty of safety tech. Kia adds standard gear that includes:

  • Driver attention warning system
  • LED headlights
  • Lane following assist and lane keep assist
  • Forward collision warnings with cyclist detection
  • Rear occupant alerts
  • Rearview monitor
  • Reverse parking distance warnings
Several optional features are available, including blind spot warnings, forward parking distance warnings, navigation-based cruise control, and more.

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