Hyundai has introduced its cutting-edge Veloster three-door coupe. The 2012 Veloster delivers innovation to the compact coupe segment with a unique third door for easy rear-seat access, Hyundai’s Blue Link telematics system, Pandora internet radio with seven-inch touch-screen display, and a new 1.6-liter direct-injected four-cylinder engine mated to Hyundai’s first EcoShift™ dual-clutch transmission.
Veloster is the sixth vehicle in Hyundai’s 24/7 version 2.0 product initiative (seven new models in 24 months), on the heels of the all-new Tucson, Sonata, Equus, Elantra and the soon-to-be released all-new Accent. The 2012 Veloster poses some intriguing questions:
Veloster’s unique design takes inspiration from a high-performance sport bike. Veloster has distinctive black A-pillars that give the glass a motorcycle helmet visor appearance. In the front is an aggressive form of Hyundai’s signature hexagonal front grille, hood scoop detailing, and unique Hyundai-signature LED position lights. Optional packages add a chrome grille surround, piano black highlights, fog lights, and a massive panoramic sunroof.
In profile the Veloster features “Fluidic Sculpture” character lines, muscular wheel arches, bodycolor door handles and mirrors, and wraparound headlights and taillights. Veloster comes standard with 17-inch alloy wheels and offers two types of 18-inch wheels. The top-of-the-line 18-inch wheel comes with painted inserts, a segment first.
Veloster’s dynamic rear design has a distinctive glass hatch, dual centered chrome exhaust tips and black lower fascia that complements the assertive front fascia. Inside, the center stack and controls resemble a sport bike fuel tank and incorporate an available push-button starter. The air vents are inspired by motorcycle tailpipes, while the floor console mirrors the seat of a bike. Metallic accents abound throughout the interior. Alloy pedals and a leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob are also available.
Veloster combines the style of a coupe and the functionality of a hatchback, while also incorporating an additional passenger-side door. In the past, some coupes have used smaller rear-hinged access doors. These coupes have always been compromised by having to open the driver-side door before the rear door could be opened, proving to be inconvenient for both the driver and passenger, and extremely difficult to operate in tight parking lot situations. Hyundai’s fresh take here implements a conventionally hinged door on the passenger side of the Veloster, providing safe and ready access to the surprisingly spacious rear seats. The passenger-side rear door handle is hidden to maintain the coupe design.
The all-new Gamma 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine is the smallest Hyundai engine to use Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI).
Through the use of GDI, the Gamma 1.6-liter engine delivers a peak output of 138 horsepower at 6,300 rpm and maximum torque of 123 lb.-ft. at 4,850 rpm. But GDI is only part of the story as the new Gamma also features Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing, an electronic throttle control, a roller timing chain, variable induction and innovative anti-friction coatings such as CrN Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) coating and Diamond Like Carbon (DLC) coating.
Hyundai’s commitment to making the Gamma engine extremely fuel efficient continues by pairing it with a standard six-speed manual transmission or an all-new, six-speed EcoShift dual-clutch transmission (DCT) developed by Hyundai.
Hyundai’s new EcoShift DCT takes the benefits of a manual transmission, including low fuel consumption and sporty driving, and blends them with automatic transmission benefits, such as high comfort levels and smooth shift quality. In addition, the EcoShift DCT enables direct connection for high efficiency and uninterrupted torque transfer during shifts. Automatic transmissions lose power and fuel economy in the torque converter.
Other improvements of a EcoShift DCT over a traditional automatic include a five to six percent improvement in fuel efficiency as well as a three to seven percent improvement in acceleration performance.
Veloster’s EcoShift DCT can be thought of as two traditional manual transmissions, each with its own clutch operating in parallel and alternating shifts. Veloster is a six-speed with one clutch acting on gears one, three and five and the other used for two, four, six and reverse. This shifting process results in quick smooth transitions with none of the efficiency loss normally associated with torque convertors. The clutch actuator assembly features electric motors for actuation, and an external damper improves NVH.
This powertrain also has an Active Eco mode which modifies engine and transmission control for improved fuel economy that translates into more than a seven percent improvement in real-world fuel economy.
The EcoShift DCT also incorporates Hyundai’s Hillstart Assist Control (HAC). HAC is designed to minimize rolling backwards on steep ascents.
World-class weight efficiency is a program target for all Hyundai models. This strategy delivers outstanding fuel economy and performance simultaneously. At just 2,584 pounds, Veloster is more than 400 pounds lighter than the Scion tC. This priority on weight efficiency allows the Veloster to deliver a great combination of agility, performance, and fuel efficiency.
The Veloster is fitted with a McPherson strut front suspension, coil springs, gas shock absorbers and a 24 mm diameter front stabilizer. The rear suspension is a light-weight V-torsion beam, a Hyundai-first with an integrated 23 mm stabilizer bar to allow bracing of the arms for greater stiffness and to further control body roll. The rear suspension also uses monotube shock absorbers for ride comfort.
Veloster features sport-tuned electric power steering that adjusts instantly to changing driving conditions while improving fuel economy over a conventional steering system. A quick-ratio steering rack is used for crisp feel on turn-in. Veloster’s turning diameter of 34.1 feet is better than tC’s 37.4 feet, CR-Z’s 35.4 feet, Mini’s 35.1 feet and Mini Clubman’s 36.1 feet. Standard are 215/45HR17 tires on 17-inch alloy wheels. There are two optional 18-inch alloy wheels with lower profile 215/40VR18 performance rubber.
Veloster has an exceptional level of standard safety features for the sporty car segment. Veloster has a Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) system which optimally manages ESC (Electronic Stability Control) and the Motor-Driven electric Power Steering (MDPS).
VSM works to control two effects. The first is when a driver accelerates or brakes on a split-mu surface (slippery on one side, dry pavement on the other) and the vehicle wants to pull in one direction. VSM detects this condition and sends a signal to the MDPS to apply steering assist. VSM counters the pull and automatically provides eight Newton meters of counter steering. VSM reacts the same way during sudden lane changes or fast cornering.
Veloster features six airbags—including dual front, front seat-mounted side-impact, and front and rear side curtain airbags.
The Veloster also features a state-of-the-art braking package. The package includes four-wheel disc brakes and an Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) including Brake Assist, which provides maximum braking force when a panic stop is detected, and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), to automatically adjust the braking force to front and rear axles based on vehicle loading conditions.
In the digital age everyone wants to be connected to their electronics at all times, so Veloster comes standard with a multifunction seven-inch touch-screen display. At engine start-up, the screen comes to life with a Veloster image and a unique sound. There are three interface layouts the user can choose from.
Pandora internet radio is integrated into Veloster. The display screen has a Pandora icon to stream internet radio from an iPhone. Pandora can also be viewed on the display screen and songs can be given the familiar Pandora thumbs up or thumbs down by pressing an icon. (By selecting the thumbs down icon that particular song will never be played again.)
Gracenote improves how Veloster drivers access and manage their music through licensed cover art, enhanced voice recognition capabilities and “More Like This” automatic playlisting. Gracenote helps organize song metadata from a driver’s music collection, and associates specific genre classifications (e.g. Indie Rock, R&B, Classical) with the identified tracks. This lets Veloster drivers create targeted similar music playlists with a single button or voice command using Gracenote’s Playlist Plus™ technology.
Gracenote MediaVOCS® technology improves the accuracy of the system’s voice recognition capabilities for music search, letting drivers pinpoint bands, artists and albums with hard-to-pronounce names, irregular spellings and nicknames. For instance, Gracenote MediaVOCS helps the system understand artist names like Beyoncé and AC/DC. And drivers can use “The Boss” as a voice command to access tracks from Bruce Springsteen.
Gracenote also powers the Veloster’s 3D carousel of album cover art, producing a driver-friendly interface that makes it easy to search for music, select albums and display cover art during playback. The combination of these Gracenote technology features provides Veloster drivers a safe and easy way to manage and enjoy their music on the open road.
One of the display’s unique features is an Eco Coach scoring system. This system acknowledges fuel-efficient driving with an eco rewards score and it accumulates points over time for a total Eco Score. The Eco Coach also provides instant fuel economy feedback so drivers can compare their average fuel economy with other Veloster owners on www.myhyundai.com.
With video games being an important element of entertainment, Hyundai integrated a USB jack, RCA jack and 115-volt power outlet in Veloster to support gaming consoles for ultimate gaming sessions when in park.
Veloster is available with two audio systems. Standard is a 196-watt AM/FM/Satellite Radio/CD/MP3 audio system with six-speakers and iPod®/USB/auxiliary input jacks. A 450-watt Dimension Premium Audio system with eight speakers including an eight-inch subwoofer and external amplifier is available. An XM Satellite Radio interface is also integrated into the head unit and features channel logos and XM Data services, such as XM NavWeather®, XM Stock Ticker and XM Sports Ticker.
A Bluetooth hands-free phone system with voice recognition, address book download and audio streaming is standard. Touch-screen navigation is optional. The system also integrates a rear-view camera, which cannot be found on the CR-Z or tC.
Veloster’s light weight, high-efficiency, and “own-it” attitude are all characteristics of a long-distance runner. That spirit lives in the bold color palette Veloster brings to consumers, including Century White, Ironman Silver, Triathlon Gray, Ultra Black, Marathon Blue, Electrolyte Green, 26.2 Yellow, Vitamin C and Boston Red.