Hyundai puts muscle in Veloster coupé

2015-06-10 06:01
PHOTO: sourced

2015 Hyundai Veloster.

PHOTO: sourced 2015 Hyundai Veloster.

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HYUNDAI has taken one giant step for the brand in South Africa with the introduction of a turbo-boosted version of its Veloster three-door coupé – a hotter model first mooted in August 2012.

It’s been a while getting here however, the 150kW/265Nm car was first shown in SA at the October 2013 Johannesburg auto show with the hope of launching it here in 2014.

It was announced then as being the first to have Hyundai’s 1.6 T-GDI engine with its high-compression twin-scroll turbo.

Hyundai SA’s marketing director Stanley Anderson said: “The Turbo model further broadens the Veloster’s ‘hero role’ in the Hyundai line-up and provides a very attractive option to our next-generation of buyers.

Today, 19 months after the promise of arrival and after driving both versions of the Hyundai Veloster 1.6 T-GDI Elite it was worth the wait - two models with the only factory option a set of floor mats, the model choice merely whether you want to pay R379 900 for the six-speed manual or R397 000 for the seven-speed direct-shift manual/auto.

The non-turbo version of the car – same engine, just not turbo’d – is priced at R297 900 for the manual version and R317 900 for the seven-speed dual-clutch auto/manual. Your call on whether the extra R80 or so is worth a sunroof, some extra features, and the extra 47kW and 98Nm.

Anderson said: “The Veloster Turbo is a pointer to where the Hyundai brand is heading - vehicles with advanced engine-transmission technology that will appeal to car buyers looking for an exciting, yet reliable and well-designed, automobile.”

The Veloster Turbo, to meet the demands of its way higher performance, has quicker-ratio steering rack and revised steering calibration - three settings are electronically available.

The front and rear suspension set-ups have been tuned “to match the expectations of drivers who appreciate firm and sure-footed road manners”.

The extra power is fed through either a six-speed manual transmission or a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission which changes gears automatically or through driver input with steering-column paddles or the gear shifter.

Les Stephenson drove the seven-speed first over the Franschhoek Pass in the Western Cape.

“I’m biased - not keen on paddle-shifts – especially when automakers blend the gear position in with the general instrumentation, if paddles are in use then make the number 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 big for easy reading.”

Anderson said: “The Veloster Turbo is not only about power and performance – it’s a well-equipped hatchback with a long list of luxury features, from the sound system with its Gracenote music management feature to leather seats, Bluetooth sound system and cell phone integration.

The Turbo, Hyundai says, also has unique front and rear bumpers and fog lights, a new rear spoiler and grille, new 18” alloy rims, projector headlights with unique LED accents, and unique LED tail lights.

Included is a sunroof, power adjustment for the driver’s seat, a really clear reversing camera/screen, split rear seats and hatch rear access, auto a/c, power external mirrors, keyless entry, six air bags, IsoFix child-seat anchors and a sporty push-button start.

The front seat belts are presented on extensions – no more scrabbling between seat and door pillar in the dark looking for the buckle – and (as with all Velosters) there’s a single rear door on the left side, a selling point for young mums carrying junior in a car seat.

“These elements further accentuate the car’s styling and add a greater emphasis to its performance,” said Anderson.

Both Veloster Turbo models are sold with a five-year or 150 000km Hyundai warranty, five-year or 90 000km service plan and five years or 150 000km of roadside assistance.

Service intervals 15 000km. - Wheels24

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