Hyundai Launches Performance Brand That Looks, Sounds Just Like BMW's

Lost in all the hullabaloo over the announcement of the Hyundai i20 World Rally Championship car today was the news that Hyundai is launching a performance-oriented sub brand for their racing and production cars. Its name — and I am totally not making this up, I swear — is N.

Yes, N. The 14th letter of the alphabet, and just one away from a slightly more famous brand established by a certain Bavarian automaker. The N brand logo even has a remarkably similar color scheme to BMW's M.

Hyundai Launches Performance Brand That Looks, Sounds Just Like BMW's

Wow, Hyundai. I mean, just, wow.

Hyundai in a news release that the brand is not named for "Notorsport," which I am told is not a word, but after the Namyang R&D Centre that developed the i20 rally car and will make future road-going cars.

Slightly ridiculous name aside, I say this is a good thing. Hyundai's cars are now as good as any on the market, but their performance-oriented cars like the Genesis Coupe and Veloster Turbo aren't quite as competitive as they could be. Maybe race-inspired stuff from N will push them in that direction.

Personally, I'd love to see a medium-sized rear-wheel drive performance sedan from this brand. Maybe they can call it the N3. Or is that going too far?