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Detroit show: Hyundai’s new Veloster surfaces

Clever girl: Hyundai has ditched the 1.6-litre naturally aspirated engine in its base Veloster for a 2.0-litre unit that produces 110kW/179Nm.

New-gen Hyundai Veloster range expected in Aussie showrooms second half 2018


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16 Jan 2018

HYUNDAI has ripped the covers off its second-generation Veloster at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit overnight that is expected in Australian showrooms in the second half of 2018.

Forgoing the 1.6-litre naturally aspirated entry-level of the outgoing model, the new Veloster will instead open with a new 2.0-litre atmo four-cylinder engine producing 110kW of peak power at 6200rpm and 179Nm of maximum torque at 4500rpm, up 7kW/12Nm.

According to Hyundai, “the Nu 2.0-litre also features Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing, an electronic throttle control, variable induction and innovative anti-friction coatings” and is paired with either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission.

Stepping up to the Veloster Turbo will see performance delivered from the carryover 1.6-litre force-fed four-cylinder unit, developing 150kW at 6000rpm and 264Nm from 1500-4500rpm.

While power matches the outgoing Veloster Turbo, torque in the new model is down 1Nm, however an over-boost function will raise outputs to 274Nm under maximum acceleration.

Turbo versions will be available with a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic with paddle shifters, as well as gaining an Active Sound Design system to enhance intake and exhaust audio, and a quicker steering rack.

Also specific to force-fed Velosters will be a McPherson strut front suspension set-up with a multi-link rear, stabiliser bars all round and 18-inch alloy wheels shod in Michelin Pilot Sport 4 rubber.

However , topping the new Veloster range will be a performance-honed 202kW/353Nm full-fat N version that is currently being produced exclusively in left-hand-drive configuration (see separate story).

Across both the base and Turbo versions of the Veloster, three driving modes – Normal, Sport and Smart – are on offer, in addition to Torque Vectoring Control (TVC) that applies braking force to the inside wheel mid-corner for “an incremental margin of cornering precision during enthusiastic driving”, according to Hyundai.

Both 2.0- and 1.6-litre engines are expected to be on offer in Australian-delivered Hyundai coupe-hatchbacks.

Retaining the first version’s asymmetrical ‘2+1’ door design, the new-generation Veloster wears new sheet metal courtesy of a collaboration of designers from Seoul, South Korea and Irvine, California.

Up front, a new hexagonal grille flanked by optional LED headlights and integrated daytime running lights keeps the new Veloster in line with its i30 stablemate, while a sculpted bonnet and chiselled lower chin add to the new model’s aerodynamic profile.

Large 18-inch wheels that fill the bulging wheelarches also combine with a lower roofline and windscreen positioned further towards the rear for a squat stance and more coupe-like profile.

From the back, tail-lights contour the slim rear window glass, while an aggressive diffuser nestles a centre-exit chrome exhaust (dual tips for the Turbo, single for the base) and a subtle spoiler is mounted on the roof.

As standard, the base Veloster will be equipped with a 7.0-inch colour touchscreen display that includes radio and auxiliary inputs, however stepping up to the Turbo will net buyers an 8.0-inch unit with satellite navigation, eight-speaker sound system and Android Auto/Apple CarPlay compatibility.

American-spec Velosters will have an option for a head-up display that can show information such as speed, navigation instructions and audio system information, which can also change to show engine speed and transmission gear in Sport mode.

Smartphone wireless charging is also included as an option.

Autonomous emergency braking is available across the Veloster range, as well as lane keep assist, high beam assist on LED-equipped versions, driver attention warning, reversing camera, six airbags, blind-spot collision warning and rear cross-traffic alert.

Australian specifications are expected to be announced closer to the local launch in the latter half of 2018, which is expected to reverse the Veloster’s downward sales trajectory.

Last year Hyundai found 1935 new homes for its Veloster hatchback, a 13.3 per cent decrease over 2016, to finish second behind the Ford Mustang (9165) but ahead of the BMW 2 Series (1750), Mazda MX-5 (1459) and Toyota 86 (1619) in the sub $80,000 sportscar segment.

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