KONA N to be produced with eight-speed N DCT and 2.0 turbo powertrain

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Hyundai has revealed details of its first high-performance SUV, the Kona N, set to feature the N DCT eight-speed wet-type dual-clutch transmission and a 2.0 turbocharged engine. The manufacturer says the N DCT will combine the engaging experience of a sequential transmission with the convenience of an automatic.

“The addition of the N DCT allows us to expand on the N brand’s ‘Fun to Drive’ philosophy,” commented Andreas-Christoph Hofmann, vice president of marketing and product at Hyundai Motor Europe. “By integrating it into the all-new Kona N, we’re enabling all sorts of high-performance driving features and turning the Kona N into a true ‘hot SUV’.”

The N DCT was produced specifically for use in N models and is an enhanced version of Hyundai’s own 8DCT eight-speed transmission, with durability improvements to make it capable of use within the company’s high-performance vehicle range.

The electric pump system found within the wet DCT is made up of a high-flow electric oil pump to lubricate gears and cool the clutch; a high-pressure electric oil pump is used to supply oil to the accumulator to maintain the pressure needed to control gearshifting. Together, these systems ensure the wet DCT transmission functions with minimum engine power loss. This new system found within the Kona N’s N DCT transmission enables performance improvements and increases the maximum torque allowance, along with increased gearbox efficiency and better vehicle acceleration.

When mated to the 2.0-liter T-GDI engine, performance is provided by a set of unique gear ratios and a transmission control unit calibrated for the vehicle, to enable quicker shifting characteristics and other driving features.

An array of driving features is also found on the Kona N, by way of several modes that enable a range of gearbox characteristics to be selected. N Power Shift (NPS), N Grin Shift (NGS) and N Track Sense Shift (NTS) enhance the vehicle’s capabilities by using a dedicated shift logic management.

The NPS function engages when the vehicle accelerates with more than 90% throttle, and mitigates any reduction in torque when upshifting, enabling maximum power to the wheels. NGS will maximize engine and DCT performance for 20 seconds and will directly shift to the best gear for maximum acceleration. NTS will recognize when conditions are optimal for dynamic driving on a racetrack and will activate automatically. The vehicle will then use motorsport data combined with driver behavior to select the optimal gear and shift timing in sport driving scenarios. The option to switch to a true manual mode is also included, enabling the driver to sustain high revs and to stop the transmission from automatically upshifting upon reaching the vehicle’s RPM limit.

The N DCT was first offered in the Veloster N; due to its success, it was then fitted to the i30 N. All production models of the latest Kona N will feature the N DCT transmission.

Outputting 280ps, the Kona N is Hyundai’s latest motorsport-inspired addition and is said to provide a flat power characteristic with more torque and power being delivered in mid- to high-range RPMs.

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About Author


After spending six years working as a mechanic for various motorsport and high-end performance car companies, Callum joined UKi Media & Events in February 2020 as an assistant editor. In this role he uses his vast practical knowledge and passion for automotive to produce informative news pieces for multiple vehicle-related sectors.

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