- The Hyundai Ioniq 5 N is a hardcore, track-ready crossover EV.
- It packs a load of go-fast goodies and is easily the most powerful Hyundai ever made.
- How did Hyundai ready its EV crossover for track work? Read on to find out.
2025 Hyundai Ioniq 5 N First Look: A Race-Ready EV Crossover?
Hyundai says yes
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is genuinely one of the best electric cars you can buy right now. It's quiet, comfortable, and has plenty of range. But what if you wanted an Ioniq 5 aimed squarely at people who wanted something a little bit more hardcore? Thankfully for you, Hyundai's N division has dumped a load of blood, sweat and tears into the new 2025 Hyundai Ioniq 5 N. It's the most powerful Hyundai ever made, the most hardcore EV crossover we've seen in this segment, and potentially the new benchmark for performance in its class.
Just one look at the Ioniq 5 N and it's pretty clear it wasn't meant to be slouching around city streets and cruising along highways. It's a far more purposeful interpretation of the standard car, with an aggressive front maw meant to direct air to independent radiators for the battery and motors to help the Ioniq 5 N keep cool during track sessions.
There are scoops, flicks, wings and ducts everywhere to help redirect air, but they also have the side effect of punching up the Ioniq 5's curb appeal for us enthusiasts. The whole car is also wider and lower, and the chassis is significantly stiffer than the standard car. It rides on 21-inch wheels wrapped in Pirelli P Zero summer tires, and the wheels themselves make no pretense about being "aerodynamically efficient." This hot Hyundai is clearly all about performance.
The Ioniq 5 N, as we've come to expect from Hyundai's N division products, has also been hitting the gym. The 84-kWh battery feeds a dual-motor all-wheel-drive system that has been juiced up to 601 horsepower, but press the N Grin Boost button and power jumps to 641 hp for a short time. With the boost engaged, Hyundai estimates the Ioniq 5 N will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in less than 3.3 seconds. Charging performance hasn't changed, however. The standard Ioniq 5 can charge at a peak rate of 238 kW, and so does the N. Hyundai says both models can charge from 10% to 80% in just 18 minutes.
High-performance EV crossovers aren't really a big deal right now, but the Ioniq 5 N will have at least two competitors when it hits the market. The first is its corporate cousin, the Kia EV6 GT. Kia says the EV6 GT makes 576 horsepower, a bit less than the Ioniq 5 N in base form and far less when boost is engaged. The Tesla Model Y Performance is also in the mix, but it doesn't have any of the N's go-fast hardware and, while Tesla doesn't quote performance figures, Model Y Performance models that have been put on a dyno have been rated at somewhere around 450 horsepower. Clearly the N is packing some pretty big guns compared to its competition.
Even though you wouldn't think to take a big, heavy EV to the racetrack, Hyundai is adamant the N is ready for track work. To that end, the N gets significantly beefier brakes than the standard Ioniq 5. The front brake discs measure 15.7 inches and are clamped on by four-piston calipers, while the rears measure 14.2 inches and have a single-piston caliper. Hyundai has also reprogrammed the regenerative braking in the Ioniq 5 N.
A new feature called N Brake Regen supplies the majority of the braking force on track (up to 0.6 g of braking force) and remains active even when you dig deep into the friction brakes. The benefits of heavy regen are, mostly, to preserve the physical brake discs until max braking force is needed (say, for heavy deceleration into a corner) and to reduce the amount the discs fade while on track.
Another way Hyundai is helping out drivers on track is with sound. It's not just the whirring of the electric motors, either. Two new programs, N e-shift and N Active Sound+, both come on the Ioniq 5 N in an effort to further engage driving enthusiasts. N e-shift essentially mimics the shift points that would come in an internal combustion engine, helping drivers keep better track of where they are in a hypothetical "rev range," while N Active Sound+ plays both futuristic EV and classic internal-combustion engine sounds. While we aren't sure of the usefulness of this feature, it helps prove that this is a car for driving enthusiasts.
The cockpit, too, has been focused up for driving. The seats are the lightweight buckets found in both the Kia EV6 GT and the Hyundai Elantra N, and the movable center console found in standard Ioniq 5's has been replaced with a stationary one that now includes a kneepad (something to brace yourself against during hard cornering). There's also a new steering wheel with the N Grin Boost button, a new horn cover design, and two N buttons that can be preset to your individual drive mode settings — think one for the everyday commute and one for track work.
The hardcore Ioniq 5 N will go on sale in March 2024, but Hyundai hasn't mentioned a price yet. Given that it boasts similar levels of equipment to the top-spec Ioniq 5 Limited and a number of pretty serious go-fast goodies, we wouldn't be surprised to see it priced near the $65,000 mark, but we won't know for sure until Hyundai sets a price.
The Ioniq 5 N makes us more than curious about what true electric vehicle performance at an attainable price will feel like, but we won't know until we drive it. Stay tuned.