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    2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo


    By William Maley

    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

    May 16, 2013

    When is a sport compact car not a sport compact? Bit of an odd question I know, but that has been in my head since I got a 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo. It has the looks, powertrain, and seats with the word Turbo stitched into them. But there is one part of the vehicle that doesn’t quite make the cut. So where does the Veloster Turbo stack up in the sport compact hierarchy?

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    The Veloster Turbo is definitely a looker. Starting with a normal Veloster and its unique alienistic design and third door, Hyundai designers added more distinctiveness. Up front, the Veloster Turbo comes with larger grille that could give most Audi grilles a run for their money on size. The large grille also allows for more air to help provide cooling to the raditor and intercooler. Also up front are a set of LED Accent lighting in the front headlights and new body panels,. The back end gets a new diffuser with center mounted exhaust ports. Finishing off the looks is a set of eighteen-inch alloy wheels and black paint.

    There is one slight problem with the Veloster Turbo’s design. The back end has a uniquely styled rear hatch with curved glass and a spoiler. While it adds street cred to the design, it also makes it very difficult to see everything out of the back. I was very thankful my tester had a backup camera which made it somewhat easier to see out of the back.

    Inside the Veloster Turbo, it's mostly the same as the normal Veloster. The only real change is the standard black leather seats with colored accenting (blue in my case) and turbo scripting. Front seats are comfortable and provide good support when driving long distances or if you want to have a bit of fun. The back seat is another story. Anyone can fit back there if they’re under six feet, but they really won’t be comfortable thanks to tight head and legroom. Then there is the issue of getting into the back. Because of third door’s shape and small opening, you have to contort your body in such a way to fit in. Hyundai should have stuck a sticker on the back window that read “to be used in case of emergencies”.

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    The Veloster Turbo comes equipped with a surprising amount of standard equipment such as a leather-wrapped steering wheel, proximity key with push-button start, an eight-speaker Dimension audio system, seven-inch touch screen, and Hyundai’s BlueLink connectivity system. My car was equipped with the $2,500 Ultimate Package which adds a panoramic sunroof, navigation, backup camera with sensors, and automatic headlights. This is a option I highly recommend.

    Using the infotainment system was a breeze thanks to Hyundai making the user interface easy to understand and a touchscreen that responds very quickly when touched. Also, the screen provided very clean and crisp graphics. The eight-speaker Dimension audio system filled the Veloster Turbo’s cabin with excellent sound, though I was wishing for a bit of sound deadening when on the highway so I didn’t have to have the system cranked when I was listening to certain things.

    gallery_10485_654_1118576.jpg

    Under the Veloster Turbo’s hood is a 1.6L turbo, direct-injected four-cylinder engine making 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. That can be paired with a six-speed manual, or on my test Veloster Turbo, a six-speed automatic. With a curb weight of 3,005 pounds and torque arriving at 1,750 rpm, the Veloster Turbo really hustles. Every time I stepped on accelerator, a big grin would appear on my face as the power rush down to the wheels and moved the vehicle along at a pretty rapid rate.

    Even with all of this performance, the Veloster Turbo does very well on fuel economy. The EPA rates the 2013 Veloster Turbo at 24 City/31 Highway/28 combined. During my week, I averaged 28 MPG in mixed driving.

    Now onto the most argued point of the Veloster Turbo; the suspension. Now you might think that Hyundai decided to tweak the suspension to give it a more sporty feel. No. The Veloster Turbo uses the same suspension as the normal Veloster. The real change is an optional set of Michelin Pilot Super Sport Summer tires that my car was equipped with. Other than that, Hyundai made some tweaks to the steering and brakes to help differentiate the two models.

    gallery_10485_654_691089.jpg

    Out on the open road, the Veloster Turbo was a very capable partner. While it cannot fully hide its basic roots (the Veloster Turbo does exhibit some body roll), the improved steering, grippier tires, and new brakes really make the Veloster Turbo a joy to drive. In day to day driving, the Veloster Turbo is surprisingly comfortable and easy to live with.

    Now to answer a question that I asked at the beginning: Where does the Veloster Turbo stack up in the sport compact hierarchy? Well it happens to be at the bottom mostly due to it having the same suspension as the base Veloster. Hyundai has got everything else to make the Veloster Turbo a real contender. But as we’ve seen before, Hyundai is a quick learner and I wouldn’t be surprised if they pull something magical right out of their hat with a refresh or new model.

    But let's remove the sport compact comparisons for the time being and look at the Veloster Turbo as a whole. During my time, I realized Hyundai created something very special with this vehicle. The distinctive looks are only part of the story as the powertrain seems to pull off an amazing feat of excellent performance and fuel economy. Partner that with the amount of standard equipment it comes with and you have a package that very few vehicles can even match.

    The Veloster Turbo is a ‘sport compact’ in most areas, but very good vehicle all around. It's one vehicle that I would gladly own.

    gallery_10485_654_1028301.jpg

    Disclaimer: Hyundai provided the Veloster Turbo, Insurance, and one tank of gas

    Year - 2013

    Make – Hyundai

    Model – Veloster

    Trim – Turbo

    Engine – 1.6L Turbocharged GDI Four-Cylinder

    Driveline – Front-Wheel Drive, Six-Speed Automatic

    Horsepower @ RPM – 201 @ 6,000 RPM

    Torque @ RPM – 195 @ 1,750 RPM

    Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 24/31/28

    Curb Weight – 3,005 lbs

    Location of Manufacture – Ulsan, South Korea

    Base Price - $22,950.00

    As Tested Price - $27,520.00* (Includes $775.00 destination charge)

    Options:

    Ultimate Package - $2,500.00

    Michelin Pilot Super Sport Summer Tires - $1,200.00

    Carpet Floor Mats - $95.00

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    Those $2.00 bicycle reflectors on the back look so cheap and stupid, but it fits with the car. One of the ugliest on the road today.

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    WOW, I see now why you took so many pictures down low and did not show off the poor back window design.

    This has got to be one of the ugliest cars I have ever seen and clearly could use some help in the design language category outside. I know the inside seems to be pretty good,but the rest of this car is a mess.

    I would suggest they make a major remake of the body style.

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    Ugliest? You've got to be kidding me. I really like this one.

    Love it or hate it looks, excellent.

    The trouble with this car are the driving dynamics at the core. Hyundai checks a lot of boxes, and has cool looks and package...but something about the drive and final engineering just isn't...totally..there. You feel how they matched the price tag after a while.

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    Would it be due to the large amount of Animation they consume so they are constantly making anime cars that are a love it or hate it look. After all Anime is all about a certain look, not a driving dynamic. They need to go to the Autobahn to learn driving dynamic. Asia = NO DRIVING DYNAMIC.

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    Hyundai still lacks the finer points of interior quality, even though the design is quite good here.

    With some more go juice and better manners all around, I think they would have come closer to the mark.

    The 3 door is unique and still i find it a complete bitch to get in the back of this car.

    This car would have more appeal in today's world to me as a cheap entry level car with super gas mileage. In that regard, the styling is a huge bonus over say, a Fit.

    Hatchbacks are still a tough sell to a lot of folks. If done like an Astra, I think it works better. The cargo hold here is a bit compromised, as is interior space.

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    I like the concept of this car but there are issues.

    The car has the Hyundai issue of you get what you pay for even with the price creeping up on this one

    The idea of a sporty trendy hatch is great and GM should have had one of these a while ago in the Opel

    The issues with this car is the odd 3 doors. The low HP for this class vs. others. The added required maintenance that is not needed like timing belts and such.

    It is a good vehicle but not great and there are much better to choose from. Also who ever put the flat clear option on this car needs their head examined.. It is bad enough on a BMW or the new CTSV but they can afford to deal with it. These cars are often owned by people who live in apartments or condo's and do not always have inside parking let along anywhere to care for it. I imagine most of them will need paint work in the near future.

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    It is a good vehicle but not great and there are much better to choose from. Also who ever put the flat clear option on this car needs their head examined.. It is bad enough on a BMW or the new CTSV but they can afford to deal with it. These cars are often owned by people who live in apartments or condo's and do not always have inside parking let along anywhere to care for it. I imagine most of them will need paint work in the near future.

    Think of it as Hyundai's stimulus plan for the country.

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    It is a good vehicle but not great and there are much better to choose from. Also who ever put the flat clear option on this car needs their head examined.. It is bad enough on a BMW or the new CTSV but they can afford to deal with it. These cars are often owned by people who live in apartments or condo's and do not always have inside parking let along anywhere to care for it. I imagine most of them will need paint work in the near future.

    Think of it as Hyundai's stimulus plan for the country.

    That's the truth!

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