What are some cars that come to mind when somebody says touring car? A few popular answers would be the Honda Civic, BMW 3 Series, or maybe even the Toyota Corolla. In the future, though, Hyundai might be part of that list.
Hyundai recently launched the all-new Elantra and it's a rather radical-looking family sedan. With sharp lines and aggressive stance, perhaps it's no surprise that the South Korean automaker thought it would be best to turn it into a race car too.
The result is the Elantra N TCR, and it's set to compete in the World Touring Car Cup or WTCR. This car is set to see action in different WTCR leagues around the world, from TCR Asia to TCR Europe. Hyundai says they chose the Elantra to be their next touring car because of its stable, high-performance chassis and sedan body shape.
So, what powers the Elantra race car? Like all TCR racers, it uses a 2.0-liter engine with a single turbo. Power is restricted to 350 PS, which is still a strong figure, especially for a front-wheel-drive vehicle. All the stock Elantra under chassis components are replaced by race-focused parts. Also, the body is wider than the road-going version to fit the sizable slick tires. As for the transmission, the Elantra N TCR uses a six-speed sequential manual.
The Elantra N TCR will make its competition debut soon, and it has a strong legacy hanging on its shoulders. For the past two years, Hyundai has dominated the series and currently have two driver's championship titles. Hyundai won the 2018 driver's championship with touring car legend Gabriele Tarquini, and in 2019 with Norbert Michelisz. That said, they want to get the manufacturer's title from Lynk & Co, who clinched it in 2019.
Can the Elantra succeed? Given that Hyundai is the most successful manufacturer in the series, it looks like it can carry that winning tradition. We might even see Filipino driver Daniel Miranda and Eurasia Motorsport running that car in future TCR Asia series races.