Hyundai has announced a lighter, lower and faster i30 N special edition named the Project C.
Why project C? Well, Area C is apparently the name of an internal test track in Namyang. But it also denotes the heavy use of carbon fibre parts and a focus on a lower center of gravity.
While you’d never call the i30 N over weight, it definitely teeters on the heavy side on the hot hatch spectrum or enough to provoke an extreme diet that’s saved just over 50kg.
Think of it as the i30 N’s Trophy R moment, or a GT3-spec makeover, as carbon fibre reinforced plastic adorns its bonnet, sills, diffusers, rear spoiler and the back of its Sabelt bucket seats. The collection of CFRP sheds 23.5kg and comes finished with a high-gloss clear coat.
We’re familiar with its O.Z Racing forged 19-inch wheels because they’re offered as an option on local models. They importantly drop another 22kg from the Project C’s weight while a pair of aluminium rear suspension knuckles slash the final 4.66kg.
PCOTY 2019: i30 N punches above its weight!
The car’s standard turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder remains untouched but its 202kW/373Nm outputs now equal a 146kW-per-tonne power to weight figure, as opposed to a fully-equipped standard car’s 134kW per tonne. This helps the Project C drop a tenth from the i30 N’s standard 0-100km/h claim, registering a 6.0sec sprint.
Engineers have also focused on the car’s suspension package. For instance, stiffer suspension springs drop the right height on specifically tuned dampers by 6mm, while the CFRP bonnet, seats and rear spoiler help lower the centre of gravity another 2.8mm.
Hyundai’s made an effort to specialise the interior by adding alcantara on more surfaces, designing its colour theme around Deep Orange – a colour seen externally on the brake calipers. It also scores a new aluminium shift knob shaped like a piston head.
As much as we’d love to see the Project C face off with its established rivals on local soil, Hyundai says it unfortunately building 600 examples only for European customers when deliveries begin later this year. Boo.
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*This article originally stated the i30 N's power-to-weight ratio when fully equipped was 141kW/tonne. This has been updated along with the Project C's figure.