Previously a wacky-shaped also-ran in the sport-compact world, the Veloster’s newfound driving verve and low price make it a hot-hatch bargain. A stiff structure, great steering, and a well-tuned suspension make it feel lively on twisty roads. It’s available with a turbocharged 201-hp engine and a terrific six-speed manual transmission; we give the Turbo an Editors’ Choice award. Our biggest qualms with the quirky three-door hatchback are its limited rear visibility and lackluster engine sound.
The Veloster 2.0 trim features a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 147 horsepower. This engine delivers ample power for almost all driving situations, but it doesn’t have the energetic feel of the available turbocharged engine. Veloster Turbo and Veloster R-Spec models come with a turbocharged, 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 201 horsepower. With this engine, the Veloster feels quick. Acceleration is good from a stop or on the highway, and there’s not much turbo lag.
The performance-oriented Veloster N, which debuts in the fall of 2018, features a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 275 horsepower. A six-speed manual transmission comes standard. A six-speed automatic transmission is available with the base engine, and a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic is available in non-R-Spec Turbo models.
With the base engine and the automatic transmission, the Veloster gets an EPA-estimated 27 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway. While those might look like good ratings, they’re actually below average for the class. With the available turbo-four engine, the numbers are ever so slightly better: 28/34 mpg city/highway.
Veloster Engine: Three’s Not a Crowd
This Hyundai comes standard with a 147-horsepower four-cylinder base engine. Higher trims feature a 201-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder. The base engine should satisfy most drivers, but the turbo-four engine delivers better acceleration and makes the driving experience more fun. Later in the model year, the performance-oriented Veloster N will join the lineup. It will feature a 275-horsepower turbo-four engine. Veloster Gas Mileage: Not Terrible, but Could Be Better
The Veloster gets 27 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway. Many class rivals get better gas mileage. For comparison, you’ll save about $150 on gas per year with the Honda Civic instead. Believe it or not, the redesigned Veloster is one of the most athletic compact cars available. It’s nimble, quick, and responsive, leading to an engaging driving experience. It also rides smoothly, even over harsh pavement.