South Korean automaker Hyundai has officially unveiled the new Veloster N with an 8-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. This is the first time the Veloster N is receiving an automatic transmission, and it couldn’t have come at a better time.
Last week, Hyundai released a teaser video of the 2021 Veloster N. It gave us a peek on what to expect from the newest hot hatch in town, and our eagle eyes were able to catch a couple of interesting details like the paddle shifters behind the tiller and a new ‘N Grin Shift’ mode.
And now, Hyundai has made it official. The new N DCT eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission is, according to Hyundai, developed to provide the engaging experience of a manual with the convenience of an automatic transmission. And unlike other dual-clutch units with dry clutches, the wet N DCT utilizes lubricating oil to improve performance and cooling in high-torque applications.
“Veloster N demonstrates Hyundai’s approach to high-performance cars. By equipping Veloster N with N DCT, drivers get performance and convenience at the same time,” said Thomas Schemera, Head of Product Division at Hyundai.
But that’s not all. Hyundai was kind enough to spill the beans about the new N Grin Shift mode. In our previous coverage on the 2021 Veloster N, we speculated this feature is the extreme performance setting that allows the new 8-speed N DCT to execute faster shifts. As it turns out, we weren’t too far off with our assumptions.
According to Hyundai, activating N Grin Shift (NGS) maximizes the transmission response for 20 seconds while overboosting the turbocharger to produce 7-percent more torque. Apparently, this boost in power is certain to induce ‘driver grin’ as the Veloster N rockets in maximum attack mode. “Anyone who wants a fun driving experience will jump at the chance to pilot the new Veloster N – an everyday sports car with racetrack capabilities,” added Schemera.
But that’s not all. The new Veloster N is also equipped with N Power Shift (NPS). It automatically engages once the driver applies 90-percent throttle input during full acceleration. The system mitigates torque reduction by using faster upshifts to send full power to the driving wheels.This allows you to make the most of the Veloster N’s turbocharged 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine with 250 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque.
Additionally, the N DCT also has N Track Sense Shift (NTS), a new feature that automatically selects the optimum gear and shift-timing by analyzing road conditions. Along with other standard features like launch control, rev-matching, and overboost, the 2021 Hyundai Veloster N is making the most of new technology to deliver a more exhilarating driving experience. And with the new 8-speed N DCT automatic transmission, you can drive the Veloster N in heavy traffic without straining your left calf muscle.
All these cool and exciting features are easily configured via a new infotainment system with a larger 8-inch display. The 2021 Veloster N also receives a powerful JBL audio system along with the new infotainment touchscreen. Other new stuff includes N Light Sports Bucket Seats which are thinner and lighter than standard. Also, the new seats have an illuminated N logo to further brighten up the interior.
The 2021 Hyundai Veloster N will arrive in North America later this year. Meanwhile, the first deliveries in South Korea will commence this month.
2023 Cadillac Escalade V-Series confirmed: What we know of this Super SUV
Cadillac’s most lavish model is about to get a sports upgrade, with the 2023 Escalade V-Series marking the first time the SUV has worn the badge. While already notorious for its scale, luxury cabin, and general excess, the V-Series flavor of Escalade will add performance to that mix.
Full details of the 2023 Escalade V-Series won’t be shared until spring of this year, Cadillac has warned. These newly-released photos, meanwhile, show the pre-production form of the SUV. Still, it gives us plenty to go on, as does the trajectory of the V-Series line in general.
For Cadillac, V-Series is more than just speed
You can’t accuse Cadillac of underplaying just what a V-badged model can do. “With nearly two decades of racing-inspired prowess,” the automaker promises, “the V-Series designation is reserved for vehicles that encompass the peak of Cadillac performance, bold, distinguished design, and innovative technology.”
The route from V-Series’ founding in 2003 to today has seen a few big changes along the way. Initially intended as a way for Cadillac to compete with Mercedes-AMG and BMW’s M division, it debuted with the 2004 Cadillac CTS-V sports sedan. That managed to score a role in the original Matrix movie series, (specifically The Matrix Reloaded, released in 2003), helping secure the green-light for the second-generation V Series in 2009.
Cadillac stuck with a familiar strategy: big, high-horsepower V8 engines, paired with its Magnetic Ride Control system for a sedan that could flick from luxury cruiser to track hero at the push of a button. By the time the ATS-V arrived in 2015, however, the criteria had expanded. Smaller and more affordable than the third-generation CTS-V – which got the Corvette C7’s 6.2-liter LT4 V8 to play with – the ATS-V packed a twin-turbo V6.
Beyond that, Cadillac attempted to replicate what BMW and Mercedes had achieved, expanding “V” as a broader badge to indicate a more sporting – though not necessarily the most sporting – iteration of a regular model. It tried, and abandoned, the V-Sport trim, and has most recently settled on “V” badged models as being entry-level performance options. The CT5-V and CT4-V are the current examples of that.
Meanwhile, a new Blackwing designation flags the most extreme examples of V-Series performance. Initially referring to Cadillac’s new Blackwing engine, but since expanded, the trim has so far appeared on the CT4-V Blackwing and CT5-V Blackwing, each produced in limited number.
What we expect from the 2023 Cadillac Escalade V-Series
For the 2023 Escalade V-Series, the expectation is an evolution in performance rather than the outright leap that Blackwing badging would indicate. The current Escalade – now in its fifth-generation – already features a V8 engine as standard. That’s 6.2-liters in size and offers 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque. A 10-speed automatic is standard.
They’re not small numbers, but then again the Escalade is not a small SUV. One possibility for an upgrade is the V8 from the CT5-V Blackwing, supercharged and with upwards of 600 horsepower on tap. Cadillac would obviously need to upgrade other components such as the brakes to balance that uptick in power, though Magnetic Ride suspension is already available on the SUV in its current form.
To better distinguish the V-Series truck visually, Cadillac has given it a moody makeover. The grille switches to black mesh, and most of the chrome has been deleted in favor of gloss-black trim. The bumpers front and rear, and the side sills, have been tweaked, and of course there are vast blacked-out wheels, too.
For the inside, Cadillac is playing it even more coy. A single image previews the “V” badging on the steering wheel, though we’d expect a fair amount of carbon fiber and Alcantara to feature, based on the other V-Series cars. The Escalade already offers a huge, curved dashboard display and plenty of space across three rows, not to mention a whole host of toys to play with.
As for 2023 Escalade V-Series pricing, there too Cadillac is saving full details. The current model spirals up to over $109k for the standard-length 4WD Sport Platinum trim, and that’s before you head into the options list. A six-figure V-Series is basically guaranteed, then, as Cadillac takes on well-esteemed (and well-equipped) performance SUVs from its German rivals.
Brabus 800 Adventure XLP Superblack is taking it to the extreme
Renowned Mercedes-Benz tuning house Brabus has unleashed its latest creation based on the Mercedes-AMG G63 sport-luxury SUV. It’s the newest variant of the 800 Adventure XLP Superblack, a go-anywhere pickup truck hiding a mighty powerful V8 engine under the hood.
Images: Brabus GmbH
This Airstream eStream concept is an electric camper with an innovative twist
Thor Industries, maker of the Airstream and other popular RVs, recently unveiled the eStream electric camper concept. It’s essentially a hi-tech Airstream travel trailer with some nifty innovations hiding underneath.
Images: Thor Industries
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