Hyundai chose the 2023 Canadian International AutoShow at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in downtown Toronto for the North American unveiling of the RN22e, and the Canadian auto show debut of their retro inspired N Vision 74.
“We are thrilled to have two incredibly exciting reveals for our return to the Canadian International Auto Show, it's not often that Canada hosts a major reveal like that of the RN22e,” said Don Romano, President and CEO of Hyundai Canada. “At Hyundai, we believe it’s important to have vehicles that suit every customer and every driver, including enthusiasts. N Vision 74 and RN22e push the limits of electrified high-performance cars, promising a future of sustainable driving fun.”
We spoke to Till Wartenberg, Hyundai’s Vice President of N Brand & Motorsport, following the unveilings:
“Race on Sunday, sell on Monday I think is a very specific North American attitude,” Said Wartenberg. “We are there to build a brand globally so of course racing helps. It’s very emotional, that's why we race. I look at it more like long term branding. So I'm not that much into race on Sunday sell on Monday. If that helps, fine, we don’t have anything against that.”
“We sold around 30,000 N cars per year globally, so it’s not really about volume. Racing is about branding, it’s about raising the bar, it’s about emotion, it’s about excitement. It’s not about volume, it's about the profitability of each car. From the branding perspective, it is to excite our fans and excite our customers. If they see our cars winning during racing, I mean, what else do you want.”
“We have N Vision 74 Concept prototypes now which you can actually run and race. But I would personally like it to go into production one day. The feedback has been so phenomenal for this car, I think we would be naive not to think about the production of a couple of cars, a limited series or limited edition, whatever it might be. Of course you cannot spend enormous amounts of money on this, so we need to somehow be profitable and we're checking if it's feasible.”
“We race when we have a connection between road cars, and racing. This is our strategy. We always get asked about Formula 1 and Formula E, this would be two series I would not recommend to join because you don’t really learn anything anymore from the technology point or trickle down.”
“I think we have more years to enjoy combustion engine racing and also combustion engine cars, so as long as the regulations make it possible for us, and the customer demand is there for combustion engine cars, we will keep racing with combustion engines. It’s clear that the electric vehicles will overtake combustion engines at some point and then we're ready for that development of course.”
“To show the future of N, we created two rolling labs simultaneously. These special vehicles were created specifically to experiment with motorsport technologies, bridging the gap between our race cars and production N models. The RN22e represents our electrified high performance vision, previewing our driving experience and technologies of the next few years. The N Vision 74, on the other hand, raises the stakes much higher — it represents our high performance vision beyond electric cars.”
The N Vision 74 is the first high-performance rolling lab built on Hyundai’s most advanced hydrogen fuel cell system. The car’s design pays homage to the Hyundai Pony Coupe concept from 1974.
Hyundai Motorsport competes in a number of global racing series including IMSA and the World Rally Championship (WRC). Since 2014 Hyundai have won 25 WRC rallies and the manufacturer’s titles in 2019 and 2020. WRC uses a fossil-free hydrocarbon-based fuel, with a blend of synthetic and bio-fuel components, the first of its kind to be used in a FIA World Championship series. The fuel uses sustainable source materials to reduce net CO2 emissions.
Photography & Video By TrackWorthy and ONE99