Car and Driver's 'Into Cars' Podcast Ep. 5 Plugs In to the Hyundai Ioniq 5 N

hyundai ioniq 5 n into cars podcast
C/D's 'Into Cars' Podcast Ep. 5: Hyundai Ioniq 5 NCar and Driver

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The fifth episode of Car and Driver's new podcast Into Cars focuses on the 2025 Hyundai Ioniq 5 N, a 641-horsepower performance EV that blends the lines between hatchback and SUV. The Ioniq 5 N has a few tricks up its sleeve. Editor-in-chief Tony Quiroga and chief brand and content officer Eddie Alterman explored the N's simulated-shift mode, piped-in engine sounds, and immensely quick acceleration while debating what this unique vehicle means for the future of fun, sporty EVs.

The N model is based on the excellent Ioniq 5, but it turns every dial up to 11. To start the episode, the hosts spoke with two Car and Driver writers who experienced early prototypes of the Ioniq 5 N to get more perspective.


"It's about as close as we get to a Korean Hellcat these days," quipped senior editor Andrew Krok, who uncovered the N's dynamic drama when he drove an early version on a frozen Swedish lake. "Theater is a big reason why people like performance cars."

Managing testing editor Dave Beard piloted a development car around the Nürburgring Grand Prix circuit and shed light on how the car's fake shifts actually benefited on-track driving, even if the lap times were a bit slower. "I found it better to drive with N e-Shift activated on the track," Beard noted. "It gave me reference points where things were happening, versus just dead silence out there."

Quiroga and Alterman then hopped into the car to experience it themselves and were immediately amused by the fake sounds, which can imitate the turbocharged four-cylinder from the Hyundai Elantra N, including the childish pops and bangs.

"I did not expect it to be this convincing," said Quiroga. Alterman agreed: "You have to be impressed and seduced by it a little, right?" The duo noted that the noises only existed inside the vehicle, letting the driver have immature fun without disturbing their neighbors.

2025 hyundai ioniq 5 n
Andi Hedrick - Car and Driver

While the Ioniq 5 N is brutally rapid—clocking a 3.0-second zero-to-60-mph time in Car and Driver testing—Quiroga and Alterman were even more enthralled by the simulated shifts and the car's adaptability.

"You can play with this as a regular EV or you can play with it as with an eight-speed and a fake four-cylinder engine under the hood," Quiroga said. "Why not give me a V-12 Lamborghini engine?"

"It really is like the ultimate big GTI," remarked Alterman. "I wouldn't be surprised if more performance EVs went this route."

To close out the episode, Quiroga and Alterman sat down with Hyundai product planner Andre Ravinowich to learn more about the car's development and Hyundai's goals with the Ioniq 5 N. Ravinowich described it as a "bridge for enthusiasts to be engaged with EVs" and spoke to the endless customizability this package offers.

"Instead of simulating an eight-speed dual-clutch, why couldn't you simulate a five-speed manual, right?," he suggested. "It just blows my mind how much opportunity there is for the future of what we can do with cars like this."

On next week's episode of Into Cars, Quiroga and Alterman will get off the beaten path with the new 2024 Toyota Land Cruiser, which pairs an array of off-road goodies with a hybrid turbocharged four-cylinder powertrain.

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