What is Hyundai N DCT?

Jack R. Nerad | April 22, 2020

Advanced engine technology is typically the thing that gets enthusiast drivers the most excited, but the new 8-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT) in the 2020 Hyundai Veloster N sports coupe definitely gets the juices flowing.

2020 Hyundai Veloster N Blue At Speed

Known as Hyundai N DCT, it could be regarded as the most sophisticated dual-clutch transmission ever offered in a widely available passenger car, and its avowed purpose is to provide drivers with grins. Yes, you read that right: grins. How can you not like a technology designed to put a smile on your face?

What is the Hyundai N DCT?

The new Hyundai N 8-speed wet dual-clutch transmission is the headline piece of technology in the Hyundai Veloster N, the model that represents the highest level of Veloster performance. Hyundai says the new automated manual gearbox is designed to provide the "engaging experience of a manual transmission with the convenience of an automatic transmission." As proof of the "engaging experience" claim, Hyundai's testing says the Veloster N with the N DCT can accelerate from a standstill to 60 miles per hour (100km/h) in about 5.5 seconds.

Certainly, this is not the first dual-clutch transmission to offer performance advantages. Those performance positives are largely why DCTs still exist because they’re often offset by negatives in around-town drivability. Downsides can include delayed engagement, abrupt gear changes, an all-around clunkiness, especially when used in fully automatic mode.

The new Hyundai N DCT is engineered to solve those problems while still offering the dual-clutch design's quick-shifting abilities.

How does the Hyundai N DCT work?

The fact that it is a "wet-clutch" configuration is the key to this new transmission’s dual personality. In contrast to dry-double-clutch transmissions, the Hyundai N DCT employs oil to improve lubrication, cooling, and facilitate smooth gear changes. Oil also enables the transmission to operate more effectively in the high-torque applications that one finds in performance coupes like the Veloster N.

Additionally, the N DCT is fitted with electronic actuators that operate the double clutch, enhancing drivability, fuel efficiency, and speedy gear changes.

N Grin Shift, Power Shift, and Track Sense Shift Settings

It is fitting that drivers can configure the transmission through the Veloster N's infotainment system because its features have a video game sensibility to them. For instance, the N Grin Shift (NGS) setting increases torque by 7% from 260 lb.-ft. to 278 lb.-ft. by allowing turbocharger overboost, and it maximizes transmission response for 20 seconds to enable much stronger launches.

For those who like to push the accelerator to the floor, N Power Shift (NPS) engages when the car accelerates with more than 90% throttle application, mitigating a reduction in torque by using upshifts to deliver maximum power to the wheels. The result is the sensation of accelerating even as you shift gears.

Another feature of the Hyundai N DCT is N Track Sense Shift (NTS). Through sensors it determines if road conditions favor dynamic driving and activates automatically, selecting the right gear and shift timing in a manner that would likely outdo most professional drivers.

To round out its feature set, the Veloster N offers rev-matching, launch control and overboost to both enhance the overall driving experience and help the driver maintain the proper amount of control. The sophisticated transmission is designed to sense the driver's style and chooses shift points to match. On long downhill runs it will employ engine braking to take the load off the standard disc brakes, and it will allow maximum revs if it senses the driver is pushing for top performance.

New N Light Sport Bucket Seats Option 

In addition to its sophisticated new transmission, Veloster N buyers who are serious about taking the car to the track might want the N Light Sport Bucket Seat option. These thinner, lighter, single-piece seats are wrapped in Alcantara simulated suede and feature an illuminated N logo on the upper portion of the backrest.

The 2020 Hyundai Veloster N will go on sale in South Korea in April 2020, followed by introductions in other markets, including North America, later this year.

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