Hyundai Veloster Turbo video review

The hot hatch that’s barely lukewarm

By Shahzad Sheikh

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

I was looking forward to trying this one. After all, I’ve got a soft spot for hot hatches, and I quite liked the quirky little asymmetrical Hyundai Veloster when I tried it three years ago (review here).

See my video review of the Hyundai Veloster Turbo by clicking below

And on paper you have that wonderfully wacky car with a more aggressive fascia, serious side skirts, twin exhausts and a Turbo badge on the back. There’s also a 7-speed dual-clutch auto in its arsenal and 18-inch alloys. Hit the starter button and rev it up, and you get a little bit of a woffle from the twin exhausts, so again, it all seems rather promising.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

However, before you set off, you start to notice other things, like the fact there’s no manual box, and that the interior is rather dark and dour and not at all in keeping with the normal Veloster, nor is there any attempt to ‘hot-hatchify’ the interior – no racing stripes on the seats, no contrasting stitching on the steering wheel, no boost gauge, not even single red ‘Turbo’ badge anywhere.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

It’s almost as if all the bravado of the exterior fizzled out once the designers realised that someone was actually going to get in and drive it – and that with some high expectations. And the loss of confidence was probably due to  one of the designers having snuck out in the Veloster Turbo one evening, and realising that the engineers hadn’t quite done their jobs with this one.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

So this is allegedly the Veloster 1.6-litre four-cylinder unit with a Turbo bolted on to extract… well I’m not sure. See some markets get a 201bhp version and others a 183bhp version (both with 195lb ft of torque). As I floor the throttle, wait for the thrum to build, and get past the excessive lag time for the turbo to finally kick in and… not do very much more at all except increase the noise levels, I have to concede that this must be the 183bhp unit, because it barely even feels it has that.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

Yes I know we live in a desert and that it’s still rather unseasonably  hot and humid at the beginning of October, but this Turbo seems to suffer more than most. It’s such an anti-climax as you wait, and wait, and wait for the boost to kick in and when it does, it just sort of half-heartedly lends a bit of hand before sitting back and roaring loudly.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo


So it’s bit gutless, can we forgive it that? Maybe if the gearbox was punchy and fun to use – which it isn’t. Or if the steering was supersharp and responsive – nah. Perhaps even if the brakes were bitey and eager – no chance. Or at the very least if it had a spark of a sporty spirit, a keen alacrity and a smidgen of enthusiasm for what it’s being asked to do. Nada.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

And then there’s the price – AED93,900. Funnily enough I tested another car recently with exactly the same price – the Mazda 3 range topper. Its 150bhp felt more substantial than the Veloster Turbo’s… whatever. And it’s a far more appealing car all-round.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

But if you’re really after a hot hatch, you just need to save around another AED5000 and head over to Al Tayer’s Ford showroom to pick up the AED99k Ford Focus ST – a proper thrill-a-minute hard core hot hatch.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

On the other hand if you really just like the Veloster, then the regular car is still a fun and funky offering, so just save yourself a whole load of money and get a regular model for around AED70k.

Hyundai Veloster Turbo

Would the Turbo be worth considering at say AED85,000? Possibly, at least that would put it far enough from something the Focus ST. However – be warned it walks the walk, but it doesn’t talk the talk.

Mazda 3 review    Ford Focus ST review

Hyundai Veloster Turbo – The Specs

Price: AED93,900 (US$25.6k)
 1.6-litre 4cyl, 183bhp @ 5500rpm, 195lb ft @ 1500-4500rpm
Performance: 0-100kph 7.6secs, 225kph, 7.9L/100km
Transmission: 7-speed, front-wheel drive
Weight:  1313kg

Let us know what you think about the Veloster Turbo below

One response to “Hyundai Veloster Turbo video review”

  1. Luis says:

    I own a 2013 Hyundai Veloster turbo M.T and I have yet to be disappointed. I reside in R.I where there are mad hills, this little girl gets up and down with power to spare. If and when in the near future i may just buy another one and still keep the 13 on deck.. parking, mpg, road noise, safety wise i was in a front end fender bender with a 2014 camary guess who won yup i did no frame damage at all lmao

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