Hyundai becomes second brand in Electric Touring Car series

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The ETCR Electric Touring Car Racing series planned for launch in 2020 now has a second manufacturer, following the launch of the Hyundai Veloster N ETCR.

Revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the Hyundai will join the Cupra ETCR in the series that is being created by WSC, founder of the globally successful TCR racing category.

Built to the ETCR regulations, the Veloster is a battery-electric, rear-wheel-drive car with a mid-mounted motor. Design work began at Hyundai’s Alzenau headquarters in November 2018, just as the gasoline-engined version of the Veloster race car was unveiled to be sold alongside the brand’s World Touring Car Championship-winning i30 N.

Development of the electric touring car follows a wider Hyundai strategy for the development of electric road cars. The race car made its first shakedown runs at the end of August and a full testing program is set to begin imminently.

According to Hyundai product division head Thomas Schemera, the Veloster N ETCR will be an important addition to a customer racing division that has already produced two packages capable of competing for championships around the world.

“ETCR is the natural next step in our journey, and one that aligns perfectly to Hyundai’s global strategy for electric vehicle production,” Schemera said.

Marcello Lotti, president of ETCR creator WSC, has welcomed the Veloster N ETCR with a promise that it will not be the last new car unveiled for the electric series.

“The Hyundai Veloster N ETCR marks the arrival of a second premiere brand of car manufacturers into this new category that we have launched in the wake of TCR’s global success,” Lotti said. “We must have done something good so far if a company like Hyundai has chosen to follow us in this new adventure after having already trusted, successfully, the TCR concept.”

The gasoline-engined Veloster N TCR, which shares 80% of its components with the i30 N, is primarily aimed at competing in markets where the Veloster road car is sold. One of the first customers for the model was Brian Herta Racing, competing in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge in the USA.

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Andrew Charman is a regular contributor to PMW. He has been working in motorsport for more than 35 years, specialising in Touring Cars and US motorsport, particularly NASCAR.

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