Detroit 2011: 2012 Hyundai Veloster is a Swiss Army Coupe

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Detroit 2011: 2012 Hyundai Veloster is a Swiss Army Coupe

Post by G-Force on Thu Jan 13, 2011 7:26 am

Hyundai's funky, tech-packed Veloster has just debuted at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show, and at first blush, the unconventional three-door looks like it'll go down a storm.

While Hyundai's North American CEO John Krafcik freely admitted that the Veloster isn't going to be the quickest car to 60 miles per hour or around a race track (that's what the Genesis Coupe is for), the Korean nonetheless promises frisky performance from its 1.6-liter engine (138 horsepower at 6,300 rpm and 123 pound-feet of torque at 4,850) and available six-speed dual clutch gearbox. A six-speed manual will come as standard-fit, and Hyundai figures that the Veloster will be good for around 40 miles per gallon on the freeway.

In the metal, the Veloster is a funky thing, with a longer-than-expected wheelbase thanks to its third front-hinged door on the passenger side. We had a chance to sample the rear seat room, and while getting in was a bit awkward, we found it more useful than the clamshell-style doors on vehicles like the Mini Clubman. Inside, our five-foot, nine-inch frame had adequate head- and legroom when the front-seat passenger had his seat positioned for a similarly sized-frame, but clearly this isn't for long journeys.

Tech-savvy types will be particularly interested in the standard Blue Link system, Hyundai's new telematics gadgetry that integrates everything from service schedule alerts to restaurant ratings, remote start and stolen vehicle slowdown. Some of the more advanced features will be available through a three-tier subscription service, but the seven-inch touchscreen is standard-fit, and a full-featured navigation system is optional (though even non-nav equipped models will have turn-by-turn guidance available through the aforementioned Blue Link).

While pricing has not been finalized, Hyundai is shooting for a base price in the $17,000-range while targeting such various vehicles as the Scion tC, Mini Cooper and Honda CR-Z.


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