A 'motorsports-inspired' Tucson has been revealed by Hyundai, and could pave the way for a proper 'N' model.
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The 2021 Hyundai Tucson N Line has been unveiled, offering buyers a sporty exterior and interior inspired by the company's 'N' performance arm.

The changes are predominantly cosmetic, with Hyundai adding deeper front and rear bumpers to the Tucson N Line, as well as a marginally taller and wider grille than on the standard model – with the 'parametric jewel patterns' gaining additional edges to create more elaborate reflections.

The headlights, integrated into the grille design, are presented within black bezels.

A finned rear spoiler has been fitted, together with body-coloured wheel arches, a rear lower diffuser, twin exhaust tips, and a set of 19-inch alloy wheels.

Above: The 2021 Hyundai Tucson N Line. Click on any of the images to see the full gallery.

Inside, the Tucson N Line gets sports seats trimmed in a choice of black suede and leather, with contrast red stitching featured throughout the cabin. An exclusive N steering wheel comes standard, as does a set of metal sports pedals and door sills.

Ride and handling remain unchanged from the standard Tucson, with the exception of a revised set of parameters of the optional Electronically Controlled Suspension (ECS) (i.e. adaptive dampers), which Hyundai says "provides even more driving fun for N Line customers, matching the model's sporty look".

In Australia, CarAdvice understands the Tucson N Line will only be offered with the 1.6-litre turbo petrol engine initially, producing 150kW of power and 265Nm of torque, and mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

Though mild hybrid, conventional hybrid, and plug-in hybrid powertrains are being made available to overseas markets, it's possible Australia could miss out entirely, thanks to our lax emissions regulations.

"With no Australian government-regulated corporate/fleet emissions targets in place, we are not considered a priority market for electrified powertrains," a Hyundai Australia spokesperson told CarAdvice in December 2020.

"This does not rule us out for any products, but it puts us lower down the list than we might otherwise be."

However, the omission of a 2.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine from the Tucson N Line announcement – and the high likelihood it isn't bound for Australia – gives weight to leaked internal documents, which indicated a hot-blooded Tucson N was in the works.

The leak, reported in September 2020, suggests the Tucson N will be offered with 213kW and 422Nm from the 2.5-litre turbo engine (shared with the Sonata N Line), coupled with an eight-speed dual-clutch auto transmission and all-wheel drive.

"Hyundai President Mr Albert Biermann has previously stated that he would consider a broad range of products as suitable for N high performance development, across all model lines, including SUVs," a Hyundai Australia spokesperson told CarAdvice at the time.

Is the Hyundai Tucson N Line coming to Australia?

Hyundai Australia has confirmed to CarAdvice the 2021 Hyundai Tucson N Line will arrive Down Under in the second quarter of 2021.

Further details of the Australian variant are expected in the coming days.