Hyundai Has Officially Axed the i30 N and i20 N Hot Hatches

Hyundai Has Officially Axed the i30 N and i20 N Hot Hatches

Hyundai's popular and fun-loving i30 and i20 N hot hatches are officially being discontinued due to tightening emissions laws In Europe (and the UK).

More bad news for hot hatch lovers, as Hyundai has announced the end of the i30 and i20 N hot hatches for the European market (and subsequently the UK market).

The reason for them axing these beloved hot hatches is due to tightening emission laws across the world and Hyundai's own ethos to push towards a "zero local emissions line-up".

In an official statement from Hyundai themselves to the website CarThrottle, they said,

"Production of the ICE N models has ceased for the European market starting from February, in line with our commitment to offering a zero-tailpipe-emission line-up to our customers by 2035 and to operating 100% carbon neutrally by 2045."

They went on to say,

"Going forward in Europe, Hyundai is developing Hyundai N as a pioneer of high-performance EVs. Our customers will benefit from technological developments that will make EVs even more attractive in the future."

Hyundai's i30 N was their first foray into the hot hatch market, and they did particularly well with great reviews across the board and many customers liking the engagement and drivability of the car.

Development was led by ex-BMW M boss Albert Biermann, who with his years of experience in the industry, knew what pressed hot hatch lovers buttons and made a direct (and fantastic) competitor to the beloved Volkswagen Golf GTI. 

The 2021 revised facelift to the i30 N saw it get a responsive dual-clutch transmission and uprated engine tweaks to give the hot hatch a decent 276bhp and 289 lb-ft of torque.

2021 also saw the release of the i20 N supermini, a competitor to the now-famous Fiesta ST which dominated the scene for a very long time. 

Its tiny dimensions paired with low weight and a ridiculously responsive chassis made it a hoot to drive. With a zesty 200bhp engine, it was a true rival to the Fiesta ST, as well as the Volkswagen Up! GTi. 

An image of the Hyundai i30 N hot hatch

Why are we losing the Hyundai hot hatches?

Stricter emissions regulations

Meeting CO2 emission targets is a major hurdle for manufacturers. Powerful petrol engines, a hallmark of hot hatches, contribute significantly to emissions. This has led some brands, like Hyundai in this instance, to cancel plans for new petrol-powered hot hatches.

Shift towards electrification

The automotive industry is heavily invested in electric vehicles (EVs) and hybrids due to government restrictions and emission targets.

Competition from SUVs and crossovers

These segments are booming in popularity, offering practicality and higher ride heights that appeal to many casual buyers.

Is the hot hatch segment dying out?

In 2023 the Fiesta, which included the Fiesta ST, was officially discontinued. The VW Mk8 GTI, GTD and GTE are likely to be the last ICE (internal combustion engine) hatches. 

Some of the current best hot hatches like the GR Yaris are pricey options. However, there are still some options available at the time of writing this article. 

You have the BMW 128ti, CUPRA Leon and Volkswagen still do make the Polo GTI and Golf GTI (although the Mk8 will be the last). So if you want a hot hatch, you need to make a move before they eventually do disappear.

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