2020 Hyundai Veloster Turbo Premium

Hyundai takes a second whack at their quirky sports car with the all-new Veloster.

Hyundai was formed in 1967. 1967! Like Japanese car makers who rose like phoenixes after a war, the Koreans started humbly. They made inexpensive cars, and traded well on that fact.

The world took their eyes off Hyundai, and haven’t they done well. Now, Hyundai is the brand of choice, period. No longer are they cheap and cheerful.

They branched into the highly competitive hot hatch market with crackers like the i30N, and this, the Veloster Turbo Premium.

There are 2 engines and 3 transmissions. All models can have the 6-speed manual. The base model 2.0L can also be had with a 6-speed automatic, and the 1.6 turbo, with a 7-speed DCT (dual clutch transmission).

Prices start at $29,490 for the 2.0L manual, to $41,990 for this Turbo Premium. Our car also has the optional black roof for $1,000. You can option metallic or mica paint for another $595.

There is also a lifetime service pricing plan too.

What’s on the Outside:

The look is very much in keeping with i30, with whom Veloster shares much DNA. You can see it around the rear end in particular.

Clever old Hyundai decided they needed a smart sporty 5 door hot hatch, and a smart 3 door hot hatch. Rather than do both, they rolled them into a single car. This 2+1 confirugation is what gives it the “quirks” mentioned earlier. The driver’s side has just a single door, and the passenger’s side has 2 doors. That is the side closet to the footpath.

The bonnet is a little longer, roof a little steeper, thanks to A Pillar changes, but more about that later.  For those who like a big bulge, wheel arches have a really big one.

The top model gets a very large sunroof which opens up and over the roof so as not to sacrifice interior headroom.

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There are 7 colours:

  • Red Ignite Flame (Solid)
  • Yellow Thunder Bolt (Solid)
  • Chalk White (Metallic)
  • Dark Knight (Mica)
  • Tangerine Comet (Mica)
  • Phantom Black (Mica)
  • Lake Silver (Metallic/Mica)

The black roof is offered on all but  black, red, and silver cars.

Dimensions are almost the same as the old car. It is 4,240 long, 1,800 wide, and 1,399 high, with a 2,650mm wheelbase. You probably won’t be scraping your tail either. The ground clearance is a decent 141mm. Weight comes in at 1300kg for the Premium Turbo, but a mere 1235kg on the base model in manual.

You can lock the doors with the boot open, allowing you to grab your groceries without having to schlep back and press the smart locking button on the door handles. The concealed external button is on the underside of the finger grip instead of under the bumper where it gets dirty. You can fit up to 303L of gear in.

How good is the cabin?

Our Premium Turbo has a bunch of goodies that really lift the cabin to a new level.

Styling is similar to the fabulous i30N with red highlights and fancy sports seats. They have big side bolsters for big cornering, and heating and cooling that help the dual zone climate control to keep the temperature just so. Rear seats are snug, with the centre position being replaced by a console with cup holders.

The long driver’s door means the B Pillar is quite a way back, so the belt is presented on an arm that swings up.

The sunroof opens to leave to give the cabin an almost convertible feel. If it gets too hot, the internal shade blocks out the summer sun.

Instruments for the driver include a 4.2” screen to display a digital speedo amongst other things. Speed and directions are also beamed onto the HUD (heads up display) which glides out of the dash once the ignition is on.

The central screen is a floating 8” touch tablet. Along with Bluetooth streaming, it comes with navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and DAB+ with sound through Infiniti premium speakers.

Convenience Features:

  • One touch turn (3, 5, 7 flashes)
  • Auto wipers
  • Rear wiper
  • Tilt/telescopic steering wheel
  • Smart entry/start
  • Drive mode
  • Paddle shifters
  • 8 speaker Infiniti sound system
  • 8-power driver’s seat

Engineering under the skin:

Body is 27% more rigid than the old model, and uses 121m of adhesive. That is 30 times more than the previous generation. The upper body is stronger, as are the side sills. Not only that, but the dual-rail reinforced roof associated with the 2+1 door setup disperses lateral collision forces.

How good is the Handling:

The rigid body improves both safety and handling. Front shock absorber structure has been changed, but it still uses Macpherson struts. The Torsion Beam rear end has been replaced by lightweight multi-link, which not only makes for better handling, but improves the ride.

Power steering has been tweaked, and the 18” wheels are shod with Michelin Pilot 4 Sport tyres. Finally, Torque Vectoring control applies a soupçon of braking to the inner front wheel to improve grip. The driver is completely unaware of the techy genius, but cornering is excellent.

Aerodynamics have been improved too, with rear spoiler, side garnish and a couple of slits either side of the rear bumper. Front air curtains reduce the air turbulence of spinning wheels, and under-body elements reduce drag. It is all terribly clever.

What to gossip on the engine:

If 110kw isn’t enough for you in the base model, the Turbo brings a 1.6L boasty 150kw, and 265Nm. As if that still isn’t enough, there is over-boost. This provides a temporary boost feature, raising the 265Nm, to 275Nm. This is all thanks to the electric wastegate actuator, known rather magnificently as the EWGA.

As mentioned, this engine comes with either a 6-speed manual or 7-speed DCT. The DCT has paddle shifters for manual operation. There is a choice of drive modes too, and includes a “smart” mode which switches between eco, normal, and sport. Veloster will decide on the mode that bests suits your style and situation.

Interestingly, the DCT gets 6.9L/100k, beating the manual car with 7.3L/100k.

Part of the new design means the A pillar is moved back from 12.5 to 11.2, and the width reduced by 31mm to 320mm. It not only makes the bonnet longer, but considerably improves visibility.


2.0 MPi Atkinson
1.6 T-GDi
Transmission 6 MT 6 AT 6 MT 7 DCT
Power 110 kW 110 kW 150 kW 150 kW
Torque 180 Nm 180 Nm 265 Nm* 265 Nm*
L/100km 7.0 7.1 7.3 6.9
* Up to 275 Nm with over-boost function activated

Safety:

All models have a slew of safety gizmos. We mentioned many of them in our recent Tucson video, but let’s run over them again.

  • Driver Attention Warning
  • Lane Keep Assist
  • Forward Collision assist City/Urban (+interurban and pedestrian to turbo models)
  • Blind Spot Monitor (turbo models) above 30kph
  • Reverse Cross Traffic Alert (turbo models)
  • High beam assist (turbo models)
  • Smart Cruise Control (turbo DCT models)
  • LED Headlights and taillights (turbo models)
  • 6 airbags
  • Hill start assist
  • Reversing camera with dynamic lines
  • Manual parking brake
  • Cruise control/speed limiter
  • Roll over sensor
  • Isofix X 2

Forward collision detection works between 8kph and 61kph for pedestrians, 180kph for vehicles. It throws out the anchors and will prevent low speed crashes. At higher speeds, speed is rapidly reduced to lessen the impact. Though, at 180kph, careful driving might be more effective.

Blind spot monitor also warns of fast approaching vehicles that might soon be in your blind spot.

How good is the Drive:

Sporty cars of the past have had the reputation of being hairdresser’s cars. Remember the early Celicas? Try buying one of those now. They are a classic that’s been rediscovered by enthusiasts who spend big bucks doing them up.

Veloster is very much in that vein.

As you approach, the folding mirrors swing out and courtesy lights come on. Smart locking allows you to simply press the button on the door handle as long as the key is in your pocket.

It is roomy, for a sports car. Steering, although much improved, is not as sharp as a Peugeot or VW sports models.

Having said all that, the ride is excellent. The cabin is quite too.

You don’t really appreciate handling until you’re whizzing through those tight bends. You can easily add extra fun by shifting the gear lever into manual mode. That allows the driver to be in full control of the shifts. In addition, select Sport Mode with the little button nearby on the centre console, and the steering and throttle come over all lively.

Make no mistake, Veloster does exactly what it says on the box. The raspy exhaust is not so overwhelming that you tire of it. Nor do you tire of throwing yourself into corners. In fact, the torque vectoring works subtly to make you a better driver than you actually are.

There are thought touches for which Hyundai is renowned. Sun visors have obligatory mirrors for the chronically obsessed.

Engine Transmission Veloster Turbo Turbo Premium
2.0 MPi 6 speed manual $ 29,490
6 speed automatic $ 31,790
1.6 T-GDI 6 speed manual $ 35,490 $ 38,990
7 speed dual clutch $ 38,490 $ 41,990
Option pricing Veloster Turbo Turbo Premium
Metallic / Mica paint $ 595 $ 595 $ 595
Two-Tone Roof (Turbo Premium) $ 1,000
Engine Service Interval 12 mths 24 mths 36 mths 48 mths 60 mths
2.0 MPi Km 15k 30k 45k 60k 75k
Cost (incl. GST) $279 $279 $365 $459 $279
1.6T GDi Km 10k 20k 30k 40k 50k
Cost (incl. GST) $299 $299 $299 $375 $299

Is Veloster good or bad?

I thoroughly love this little Hyundai.

I love it for its quirkiness. You quickly get used to the 2+1 door thing too. Rear passengers can both get in on one side, or spice it up a bit by doing the coupe thing on one side, and family hatch thing on the other.

Price: $41,490

Engine: 1.6L turbo

Trans: 7-sp DCT

Econ: 6.9L/100k

CO2: 160g/L

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