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Hyundai’s Nurburgring test centre open for business

Circuit reset: This Veloster SR Turbo is doing laps of the Nurburgring in Germany, where Hyundai now has its own testing base.

Brand new Hyundai Europe test centre at the Nurburgring opens its doors

20 Sep 2013

HYUNDAI’S aggressive pursuit of mainstream status – and mainstream respect – in Europe received a fillip this week with the formal opening of its $9 million test centre at the iconic Nurburgring in Germany.

These test centre will be used to hone the dynamics and ensure the durability of its future model range, sports-oriented or not, and is situated close to its European design and development headquarters near Frankfurt, which has been in operation since 2003.

As we reported from Europe last week, Hyundai is understood to be keen to spin-off a range of WRC-inspired hot hatches developed here in the near future.

But even humble city cars with be tested at the ‘Ring.

Construction of the 3600 square-metre European Test Centre began in June 2012, meaning it was completed inside 15 months. The centre houses workshops, office spaces and hospitality areas over four floors.

Under Hyundai’s testing regime, each Hyundai vehicle taking part in testing laps the Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit 480 times, in both dry and wet conditions, simulating over 160,000 kilometres of rigorous driving in fewer than six weeks.

Data parameters monitored over each lap factor in steering input and vehicle course, suspension movement, and ride and handling characteristics. The results are given directly to the vehicle development team based at the circuit enabling swift revisions.

Hyundai Motor Europe senior vice president and COO Allan Rushforth said: “The Nürburgring is a unique challenge for any vehicle, so it is the perfect location for our new facility.

“The new European Test Centre is a natural extension of our Technical Centre in Rüsselsheim, and enables Hyundai to more quickly and more accurately test the reliability and drivability of our vehicles.

“The emotional appeal of being ‘tested at Nürburgring’ will also help to further build the brand’s reputation across Europe.”

The Nürburgring cinsists of 170 corners spread across 20.8 kilometres of tarmac. With a difference in height of almost 300 metres between the lowest and the highest points, it features uphill and downhill gradients of 11 and 17 per cent respectively.

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