Hyundai’s aggressively styled new hatchback is “unlike anything on the road right now.” It combines serious fuel efficiency with “comfort and athleticism,” and it’s the only car around using an asymmetrical three-door layout—one door each for the driver and front passenger, plus a cleverly integrated rear door on the passenger side. Throw in a wealth of standard features, and the Veloster adds up to a “small-car driving experience that fights above its weight class.”
The Detroit Bureau
Open one of those three doors and you’ll discover a roomy cabin that’s “lavishly appointed,” given the car’s sticker price. A well-tuned suspension makes this eye-catching compact confident in curves, too. Though the 138-hp engine could use more power, “a bit of tweaking could turn the Veloster into the sort of machine that performance fans love.”
It would be foolish to suggest that Hyundai won’t find a sizable market for a car “so cool-looking, so practical, so efficient, and so inexpensive.” Still, the Veloster suffers a “distinct lack of energy” that goes beyond its mild straight-line power. For now, Hyundai has sacrificed liveliness to hit 40 mpg with the Veloster’s manual-transmission models. “We can’t wait” for follow-up versions with different priorities.