NOT everyone is a fan of electric cars. Me? I’m a bit on the fence, having enjoyed driving them on tests, but, like some, not completely convinced that they are a replacement for petrol or diesel cars just yet. But I must admit they are getting there.

If you combine a love of speed and power and electric capability, an electric hot hatch is a must have for the sporty driver. Fulfilling the speed and power elements in an electric vehicle (EV), the multiple award-winning Hyundai IONIQ 5 N has added yet another coveted honour to its expanding trophy cabinet by being named Best EV Hot Hatch at the 2024 Electric Awards.

The annual awards are a celebration of the finest choices in the swiftly evolving world of electrified vehicles, recognising innovation across a number of diverse categories. TopGear’s expert panel of judges voted the IONIQ 5 N a clear winner as the Best EV Hot Hatch, praising Hyundai’s dedication to infusing it with a spirit that ensures every drive is one to be savoured.

Jack Rix, TopGear Editor-In-Chief, said: “In a world where pure electric hot hatches are a rarity, Hyundai has clocked the game at its first attempt. Experimental, capable, but best of all filled with a sense of humour that so many EVs lack, the IONIQ 5 N is a benchmark moment for the electric car.”

The high-performance model combines the Electrified-Global Modular Platform (E-GMP) of the standard IONIQ 5, the 2022 World Car of the Year, with the motorsport-bred technologies and expertise of Hyundai’s N division to take driving fun to a new level. Among the IONIQ 5 N’s array of key technical advances is a powertrain which delivers greater power output and enhanced performance in battery cooling and braking. The IONIQ 5 N’s electric motors spin up to 21,000 RPM, providing up to a mind boggling 600 horsepower (hp) in normal conditions, or 641hp when the car’s N Grin Boost (NGB) feature is engaged, giving acceleration figures of 0-62mph in just 3.4 seconds, and a top speed of 161mph.

A memorable drive is guaranteed by a host of upgrades, including a strengthened steering column for improved feedback, Electronic Controlled Suspension that adapts suspension stiffness according to the drive mode, and a suite of sophisticated electronic control technology in the E-GMP platform. Highlights include N Pedal, an intelligent software function that provides instant turn-in and enhanced throttle sensitivity for exhilarating cornering, and fully variable front and rear N Torque Distribution. The IONIQ 5 N also sets a new benchmark in terms of emotional engagement for a performance EV, courtesy of N e-shift, which simulates the eight-speed dual-clutch transmission of internal combustion engine N cars, and N Active Sound+, which provides a compelling soundtrack that highlights the EV’s power. Yes, you can hear this EV.

Despite having been available for only a matter of months, the IONIQ 5 N has already collected some prestigious accolades, including recently being crowned World Performance Car in the World Car Awards. In December it was named’s overall 2023 Car of the Year, and it has also recorded the fastest electric SUV lap time at the Nürburgring Nordschleife (the old F1 circuit) with Germany’s Sport Auto. Ashley Andrew, President of Hyundai and Genesis UK, said: “The IONIQ 5 N is a true game changer and so we are thrilled that the experts at TopGear have named it the best electric hot hatch of 2024. It is a genuinely engaging high-performance EV that is leading the charge towards an exciting future for electric mobility.”

I would certainly have one of these.