Hyundai’s automotive journey started out with reliable econoboxes. After forging a reputation for building reliable products, the Korean manufacturer decided it needed to lift its image by forming a high-performance division called N. The i30N was the first creation from this specialist side of the business. The Hyundai N Drift Bus is the latest product to show that Hyundai is a brand that knows how to have fun.
The Hyundai N Drift Bus is based on the H1 (which we drove at its local launch) but is quite far removed from its production roots. It boasts twin-turbocharged a 3,5-litre V6 that produces over 300 kW and 555 N.m of torque. Power is fed to the rear axle through an eight-speed auto transmission. Electronically-controlled dampers act on 19-inch alloy wheels shod with performance rubber.
The interior features sports seats up front and an N series steering wheel. Hyundai Australia says it achieves a 50:50 weight balance only when it’s carrying eight people; just as long as though eight buddies can keep their lunch down while the driver slides the unlikely drift machine through every corner.
The Hyundai N Drift Bus was created by an internal ‘skunkworks’ at Hyundai Australia. Don’t expect to see it on sale at a local dealer any time soon. Its creation was voted on by fans of the brand. In a poll the company asked which Hyundai product fans like to see turned into an N Performance model; the H1 finished second to the Tucson. But Tucson would have been too easy… so the chaps started turning a standard H1 into the corner-carving, tyre-killing one-off creation.
The company plans to run the unique creation at the World Time Attack Challenge this weekend. The event is taking place at the Sydney Motorsport Park. The bus will be seen in action in the Clubsprint, Flying 500 and International Drift Cup classes.