The 2013 Hyundai Veloster may have a sporty ring to its name and appearance. Truth be told, though, it lacks the road performance that most enthusiasts crave for, especially in base form. However, with a healthy dose of excellent features, fuel efficient engines, highly-styled look and a reasonable pricing, it is not a bad pick for a hatchback.
NEW FOR THE 2013 HYUNDAI VELOSTER
o Introduction of Hyundai Veloster Turbo
o Base Veloster models lose some engine power when paired with automated manual transmission, but returns better fuel economy figures
o RE:MIX edition, which spiffs up the Veloster with special wheels and body kit
UNDER THE HOOD
Standard to the front-wheel drive 2013 Veloster is a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 138 horsepower and 132 lb-ft of torque when paired with the standard six-speed manual. Power is reduced to 132 ponies and 120 lb-ft of torque when hooked to a six-speed automated manual transmission (DCT), which is offered as an option. With this powertrain in use, manual-equipped Velosters receive an EPA fuel economy rating of 27/37 mpg, while DCT-equipped models get 28/37 mpg.
A tubocharged version of the 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine is also available, but can only be had in Veloster Turbo models. Whether linked to the standard manual or optional six-speed automatic transmission, this powertrain delivers a maximum output of 201 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. EPA fuel economy ratings for this engine are 24/35 mpg with the manual transmission and 24/31 mpg with the automatic.
ON THE ROAD
Driving the Veloster delivers two different performances depending on what it has under the hood. When equipped with the base four-cylinder engine, the Veloster is supplied with a level of acceleration and passing power that is just adequate for daily commuting. With the turbocharged four-cylinder on tap, on the other hand, the Veloster Turbo’s acceleration time enters the league of hatches such as the Mazdaspeed 3, Volkswagen GTI and Ford Focus.
The Veloster becomes more rewarding to drive if the six-speed manual transmission is used. Those who opt for the DCT will not be disappointed either, as it offers smooth shifts, while the transmission in the Turbo versions is able to provide faster acceleration, thanks to the availability of a Sport mode.
Overall, the Veloster handles responsively and holds well around corners and turns and is composed at city speeds. Steering could use a bit more refinement, but brake feel is commendable. Its suspension is good enough to maintain a compliant ride, making it a good companion on weekend trips and longer drives.
INSIDE THE 2013 HYUNDAI VELOSTER
The interior of the 2013 Veloster has a high-tech yet classy feel. The standard seven-inch touchscreen at the front and center is the first thing you will notice once you step inside. It functions as the main operating system for most of the Veloster’s functions, including the audio and navigation. Moving on, the controls are logically placed and easy to use, while the instrument panel takes inspiration from the fuel tanks of motorcycles. Material quality is good, though there are a couple of hard plastic details that are finely textured to blend in with the rest of the interior.
With the Veloster’s unusual configuration, it is more versatile and allows easier access both at the front and back. The front seats offer ample space and comfort, while the back seat is not too roomy, but provides respectable legroom to work with. The sloping roofline reduces headroom, while the seats themselves are quite low. Cargo area provides a lot of space for luggage at 15.5 cubic feet.
Three versions of the 2013 Hyundai Veloster are available to shoppers: the base, RE:MIX and Turbo. Whichever trim you go with, you are sure to get good value for your money as all three are well equipped.
The base Veloster comes standard with air conditioning, cruise control, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, six-way height-adjustable driver seat, full power accessories, Bluetooth, BlueLink telematics, seven-inch multimedia touchscreen, AM/FM/satellite/CD audio system with six-speakers, auxiliary audio jack, RCA audio video jack, iPod and USB inputs and Pandora Internet radio capability, heated mirrors, LED running lights and 17-inch alloy wheels.
The base trim can be upgraded with the Style Package, which contains goods like a driver’s side auto-up window, leather-clad steering wheel and shifter, cloth or leatherette upholstery, Dimension premium audio system, alloy-trimmed pedals, piano-black and chrome exterior trim, sunroof, fog lights and 18-inch alloy wheels. The Tech package can also be availed with the Style package, bundling items like a navigation system, power outlet, rear parking sensors, rearview camera, keyless ignition and entry, automatic headlights and 18-inch wheel with body-color inserts.
The RE:MIX trim is a souped-up version of the base Veloster. It comes with a leather-wrapped steering wheel, monogrammed floor mats, LED interior lighting, Dimension audio system, keyless ignition and entry, projection headlights with LED accents, fog lamps and 18-inch alloy wheels.
Opting for the Turbo trim further enhances the Veloster’s offerings with leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, leather upholstery, driver lumbar adjustment, heated front seats, Dimension audio system, a couple of styling details, sport-tuned steering and a different set of 18-inch alloy wheels. Optional to this trim is the Ultimate package, which delivers extras like a navigation system, rearview camera, 15-volt power outlet, rear parking sensors, automatic headlamps and a sunroof.
Photo credit: conceptcarz.com