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Hyundai unfazed by Toyota 86 pricing

Turbonator: Hyundai will inject further fun into the Australian affordable coupe market when the Veloster Turbo arrives at the beginning of August.

No ‘grand gestures’ in Hyundai pricing to counter Toyota 86 as Veloster Turbo looms

Hyundai logo28 Jun 2012

By HAITHAM RAZAGUI

HYUNDAI’S transition from its bargain basement roots to what it describes as “modern premium” will be cemented when the Veloster Turbo coupe arrives in early August with a price point unaffected by Toyota’s shock $29,990 entry point for the 86 sportscar.

Describing Toyota’s pricing of the 86 as “a grand gesture”, Hyundai Australia marketing director Oliver Mann told GoAuto at a recent product briefing that the South Korean business ethos was “more pragmatic”.

“We will run our own race,” he said. “Veloster Turbo will represent strong value and we will price the car to achieve the volume that the supply enables us to sell … we have our own targets, rather than looking to particularly what competitors are up to.”

Hyundai Australia public relations and events senior manager Ben Hershman told GoAuto the company was targeting a price below $35,000 for the Veloster Turbo, which would bring it in below the top-spec 86 GTS, priced from $35,490 with a manual transmission.

Mr Hershman agreed the Veloster Turbo’s target price would be unaffected by the Toyota 86, dismissing the rear-drive 2+2 as not a direct competitor to the Veloster.

1 center imageFrom top: Toyota 86 Hyundai Elantra Hyundai ix35.



“The sports segment is interesting because it is a mixed pot, you have Minis, the 86, Veloster and so on, and people who are looking for a rear-wheel-drive car will not be looking at a Veloster they will look at Mazda MX-5,” he said.

“For us Veloster has a bunch of indirect competitors.”

At the moment, the most obvious Veloster competitor is Honda’s hybrid CR-Z coupe, priced from $34,990, which will be joined by the Opel Astra GTC when it arrives in September.

The Veloster Turbo’s force-fed 1.6-litre engine produces power and torque outputs of 150kW and 246Nm, 3kW more powerful and 41Nm gruntier than the naturally-aspirated, high-revving 2.0-litre Boxer engine of the 86.

With its 18-inch alloy wheels, gaping grille, body kit, large twin central exhausts and lower ride height, the Veloster Turbo cuts a more aggressive, purposeful figure and is physically longer and wider than the standard car.

The standard Veloster coupe, with its unusual asymmetrical design with two doors on the passenger side and one on the driver’s side, was launched Down Under in February.

Powered by a 103kW/166Nm four-cylinder engine, it is priced from $23,990 (plus on-roads costs) for the manual entry-level variant, with the top-spec ‘+’ variant with dual-clutch automatic transmission coming in at a Toyota 86-matching $29,990Speaking at the product briefing, Hyundai Australia product planning senior manager Scott Williams announced a new variant for the popular ix35 compact SUV that is hoped to help alleviate the problem of limited supply on several variants.

A new front-drive, petrol-powered Elite variant will join the ix35 range above the existing Active entry-level model, which is priced from $26,990 with a five-speed manual transmission.

Mr Williams also announced an update to the Elantra small car that launched in Australia a year ago.

The MY13 update, already available in showrooms, includes a new audio system with five-inch colour touch-screen, chrome interior door handles and aerodynamic windscreen wipers.

What's coming from Hyundai in 2012:
Veloster TurboAugust
Santa FeSeptember

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