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2012 Hyundai Veloster Ride and Review by Larry Nutson

2012 HYUNDAI VELOSTER (select to view enlarged photo)


Hyundai Specs Comparisons and Prices
Hyundai Veloster Your Perfect Match?

TWEET:2012 Hyundai Veloster, Funky, Fun, Practical (In a 3 door coupe sort of way)

Funky and Fun

By Larry Nutson
Senior Editor, Chicago Bureau
The Auto Channel

I was impressed by the fashionable looks of the Hyundai Veloster when I first saw it in person a year ago at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show.(2011 Detroit Veloster Unveiling Video) And, I was impressed with the 2011 Hyundai Sonata in my drive last summer. No doubt that the Veloster is targeted at younger folk but I see no reason why folks like me…active lifestyle empty nesters…can’t drive this car with lots of enjoyment and satisfaction.

While I had the Veloster, I needed to do some running around Chicago; picking up a large box at a hotel; meeting a friend and then the two of us visiting another associate for work on a mutual project. The young doorman at the hotel who I asked to leave the Veloster at the front door immediately recognized the car and we got into a conversation on its unique design. The large box fit easily under the rear hatch in the cargo area. The passenger-side rear door made for easy loading of personal items in the rear seat area. Zipping through the streets of Chicago and negotiating a parking garage was with ease.

2012 HYUNDAI VELOSTER (select to view enlarged photo)

Veloster is a three-door coupe, but not like other coupes with a small rear-hinged door. Veloster is a coupe by design with the functionality of a hatchback. The driver’s door is a typical longer door as any two-door. On the passenger side it appears as a four-door. The B-posts are in different locations on each side of the car.

2012 HYUNDAI VELOSTER (select to view enlarged photo)

Veloster is a four-seater with a 60/40 split-folding rear seat. Thus, in my view, suitable for singles, couples of any age, young children in the rear seat…with no fear of a door being opened into traffic, friends occasionally in the rear seat, taking a road trip or folding the rear seat to carry a new household purchase. With an overall length a touch over 166 inches city maneuvering and parking is a cinch.

2012 HYUNDAI VELOSTER (select to view enlarged photo)

Power comes from a 138-horsepower, 1.6-liter GDI 4-cylinder. My test car had the 6-speed manual which was easy-shifting with light clutch action and fun. A 6-speed dual-clutch automatic with paddle shifters is also available. Drive is through the front wheels. Many Hyundai models get 40 mpg and so does the Veloster. EPA ratings for the manual are 28 city mpg and 40 highway mpg. The automatic is rated at 29 city mpg and 38 highway mpg. With its 13.2 gallon fuel tank, the manual will get you 528 miles down the highway.

Coming in this summer, as 2013 model, is a new 201 HP turbo engine version. This model was announced at the auto show in Detroit and will feature sport tuned suspension and steering and many unique design elements including 18-inch alloy wheels. Many will like the increased excitement in the hot-hatch segment.

2012 HYUNDAI VELOSTER(select to view enlarged photo)

Interior fit and finish of the Veloster is, as expected of Hyundai, very good. The bolstered front seats provide a nice level of support. With a base price of $17,300 my Veloster test car had the full contingent of safety equipment that we expect today including lots of air bags, 4-wheel discs with ABS, electronic stability control, and tire pressure monitoring.

2012 HYUNDAI VELOSTER (select to view enlarged photo)

The area under the rear hatch holds 15.5 cubic feet of cargo. Combined with the split-fold rear seat, there is lots of versatility for hauling everything from groceries to sports equipment.

An optional $2000 Style Package included 18-inch alloys fitted with 215/40 tires, fog lights, a sunroof, premium audio with eight speakers and alloy pedals. The optional $2000 Tech Package included a nav system with rearview camera that together with the backup warning sensors is wonderful for tight parking maneuvers.

A standard feature of the Veloster is Hyundai’s Blue Link Telematics System that enables in-car web or smartphone app. Blue Link features include POI search and download, voice text messaging, location sharing, Geo fence vehicle boundary alert and roadside assistance.

Like all Hyundai vehicles sold in the U.S., the Veloster is covered by the Hyundai Assurance program, which includes the 5-year/60,000-mile fully transferable new vehicle warranty, Hyundai’s 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, and five years of complimentary Roadside Assistance.

I liked the modern shape, the practicality of the hatch, the upscale interior with impressive fit and finish, and the nice price. With gasoline prices trending beyond $4 towards $5 a gallon this year, the good fuel economy is a big plus. Styling is attractive and unique and turns many heads.

Larry Nutson