2014 Hyundai Veloster Turbo

hyundai_veloster_turbo

The Veloster Turbo from Korea is really something special. Hyundai has done a miraculous job of equaling and in many ways surpassing Japanese automakers. No Japanese automaker comes close to offering the luxurious, extravagant warrantee you get from a Korean-based automobile. This is one important feature that is superior to Lexus, Lincoln, Infiniti and even Mercedes. Now you can have plenty of luxury features with the Veloster Turbo performance car from Hyundai.

In a unique position this Veloster Turbo really has no direct competitor. Most automobile reporters attempt to match up the Fiat 500 Turbo, the Volkswagen GTI and the Mini Cooper S. The 500 Turbo is about two feet shorter and has about 64 less horsepower and gets worse highway fuel economy. The Cooper S is about 20 inches shorter has about 20 less horsepower and costs over $2,000 more. Volkswagens’ GTI is the closest match within two inches and 1 hp yet still almost $2,000 more.

The Turbo is the crown jewel of the Veloster series, so the asking window sticker price is $22,895, an excellent value for such a thrilling performance car. Rated at 24 city and 35 miles per gallon highway it is 167 inches long, seats four and great for tall drivers. The tilt and telescoping steering wheel combined with the power height adjustable driver’s seat allow 5’4″ and shorter a good fit, too. So if you have the money and want an inspiring economical ride you’ll probably fit comfortably in the supportive bucket seats.

The over 104 inch wheelbase is the longest of all the competition making for the most pleasant ride characteristics. The substantially four-wheel independent suspension creates less steering correction and driver fatigue. The power steering is a touch light and entertaining. This steering is good for long-term satisfaction. This Veloster is way more fun to drive around city and suburbs than a Maserati, Ferrari or even the exquisite Bentley Continental W12.

The turbocharged 1.6L four-cylinder engine has direct injection of gasoline right into the combustion chamber and variable valve timing for both intake and exhaust to create the best fire breathing dragon. Turbochargers have a different feeling under hard acceleration. Part of that feeling is trying to hold your head in place because of its neck snapping performance. The $1,100 optional fluid drive six-speed automatic transmission is genuinely well done. When using a turbocharger an automatic transmission is usually quicker to accelerate than a manual transmission with a clutch pedal. Although the manual may give you a bit more control it’s unlikely to give you any better fuel economy.

The front engine, front-wheel, automatic transmission driveline, steering and braking are responsive like a sports car. Although the Veloster sits four average active adults well it looks like it is a two-door; although it actually has three doors and a hatchback. Please look at the photographs this is a very special design with two short doors on the passenger side, one for the front seat and another door for the backseat. On the driver side there is one long door, like a typical sport coupe that allows you access to the rear seat by leaning the driver’s seat forward. The B-pillar behind the driver’s door is in a different location on each side of the car. This car is different. It’s no AMC Pacer but it is likely to be the next car you’ll see Wayne and Garth driving.

Desire attention; buy a Veloster Turbo in Boston Red or Marathon Blue. In one week of sample driving three strangers said positive things to me about the VT. When my wife was behind the wheel driving solo, she got a few too. I was told both comments were about the car and could have been misconstrued as opening lines. All our comments came from outspoken men without gray hair.
With the nose reminiscent of a die cast mid-1950s Micro Racer Mercedes Formula; today’s Hyundai Veloster Turbo is an attractive styling statement. Like a true racecar there is no front bumper to mess up the strong personality and beautiful lines. Even if you personally don’t like the styling it commands respect and shows courage.

If I were Korean I would be proud of such a product built in Ulsan, Korea. I would be prouder still knowing that we built the engine and transmission, too. Please look over our photographs. Notice the black and body color trim where chrome use to be. The style is mature and international. The upfront lighting is shiny and curved reminiscent of bangles and necklaces laced with LED illumination. Well-placed fog lights throw light way to the side so seeing the edge of the road is easier, parking too. Turn signals are safely incorporated into the outside mirrors. How do you like the sidelines? Can you see the handle on the third rear door?

The tail is tantalizing. I had followers on the Highway who spotted my side-by-side middle mounted chrome tipped exhaust pipes in a flat black field of plastic below the rear body colored bumper. Or maybe they noticed the LED taillights that flash on noticeably quicker than regular brake lights. The rear is as well done as the front. It all is a style that may have to grow on you.

If you have bending neck or spine issues and are tall you may not enjoy getting in or out. Once in the front bucket seat enjoyment begins. All controls work in an even symmetrical fashion. There are no tiny switches with tiny print. The interior is quite straight ahead and reasonable. Whilst driving, move your arms and eyes around using the audio, climate or information controls to see how natural they really are.

For a mere $2,500 more you can have the Ultimate Package, which includes a rearview backup camera, navigation system a big sexy panoramic roof plus more. If you’re serious about performance or active safety maybe you should spend the $1,200 for fantastic Michelin performance tires right from Kia.

Whether you drove European sports cars or V-8 muscle cars or a family sedan you will find this Turbo model to be pleasurable and satisfying on most all commutes. The combination of comfortable ride quality, easy handling, and superior visibility makes this a car you should actually try. Many mature drivers in their 50’s, 60’s and 70’s will enjoy the whole Veloster Turbo drive and ownership experience.

So in conclusion; the Veloster Turbo model for about $23,000 including freight is an outstanding front-wheel drive sports car that returns good fuel economy and seating for four so you can drive your fastest passing Porsches in the diamond lane.


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