Hyundai's Latest Ioniq 5 Is a 650-hp Track-Bred Monster

Laurance Yap
July 20, 2023
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is one of our favourite EVs for its combination of features, practicality, and value. Now, it's also one of the most exciting performance EVs, thanks to the new 650-hp Ioniq 5 N.
Hyundai Ioniq 5 N front exterior driving on a track

Hyundai's Exciting New Electric: the IONIQ 5 N

If you’re a regular GreenCars reader, you know we’re big fans of Hyundai’s electric cars. They combine impressive range and efficiency, excellent fast-charging capability, and innovative features with standout styling at reasonable prices. The Ioniq 5 hatchback is one of our favorite EVs out there. And now, Hyundai has launched a high-performance version, the Ioniq 5 N, paving the way for new line of high-performance electric Hyundais built for the racetrack as well as the road.

Hyundai Ioniq 5 N exterior wheel close up

Aggressive EV Design Elements

Building on a strong legacy of gasoline powered N models (N for Namyang, Hyundai’s Korean test track), the Hyundai Ioniq 5 N adds huge power, advanced technology, and extreme cornering ability to the regular Ioniq 5. It is distinguished by many performance-inspired design elements, with contrasting black trim, and a larger rear wing. The ride height is lower and sportier, and a widened body accommodates larger tires on forged 21-inch wheels.

The visuals suggest a lot of extra performance, and the Ioniq 5 N delivers. Its twin electric motors spin up to 21,000 rpm and provide up to 650 metric horsepower when in the most aggressive (if cringey) N Grin Boost drive mode. A two-stage inverter with increased energy efficiency maximizes the power output from the new 84-kWh battery. N Grin Boost, which is available for 10 seconds at a time, also has launch control for maximum acceleration.

Hyundai Ioniq 5 N driving on a race track

Hyundai IONIQ 5 N: Track-Ready

A number of features are designed specifically for fun on the racetrack. Enhanced cooling and thermal management keeps the battery at its optimum temperature for the best performance. An N Race mode optimizes this fast EV’s performance on the circuit, giving drivers direct control over energy usage by choosing endurance or sprint settings depending on how much time they will spend on-track.

Hyundai’s engineers have also developed particularly effective brake regeneration, which recaptures energy up to 0.6 G of braking force, better than any other EV on the market, before the mechanical brakes are used. Those brakes are the most powerful fitted to any Hyundai, with huge discs and high-performance calipers.

Simulated Manual Gearshifts

The Ioniq 5 N’s most interesting feature may be its integrated N e-shift function, which provides a sense of control similar to a manual transmission. N e-shift mimics the function of an eight-speed gearbox, and simulates a gearshift by controlling the motor’s torque output, and even adds a jolt between shifts. It’s coupled with an active sound module that incorporates eight internal and two external speakers to deliver the exciting sounds: the driver can choose between the sound patterns of an internal combustion engine, a fighter jet, or Hyundai’s RN22e concept race car.

Handling should be excellent as well. Hyundai boasts that the Ioniq 5 N has a reinforced body with 42 additional welding points and additional adhesives for improved strength. Motor and battery mounts are reinforced, and the steering column has been strengthened. Special programming for the accelerator pedal is said to aid instant turn-in behavior and enhanced throttle sensitivity – sacrificing a little efficiency for responsiveness. There’s even a drift mode which lets drivers slide the Ioniq 5 N around corners like an expert, using variable front and rear torque distribution and an electronic limited-slip differential.

Hyundai Ioniq 5 N interior seats

Sporty, Sustainable Interior

Inside, the Ioniq 5 N has numerous touches to make it feel special. Unique elements include upgraded and lower-set sports seats, door scuff panels, and metal pedals. The steering wheel has buttons that allow the driver to choose their preferred drive mode, as well as shift paddles and access to the N Grin Boost function. Despite the sporty atmosphere, the Ioniq 5 N still features sustainable materials throughout, including recyclable door trim, seat fabric woven from sugarcane and recycled PET bottles, and ecologically-processed leather. Practical touches include a wireless phone charger, multiple USB-C ports, and more.

There’s no word yet on specific pricing and EPA range estimates for the Ioniq 5 N, but one thing’s for sure: this is the most exciting electric car to ever come out of Hyundai. We can’t wait to see what else the company has up its sleeve.