Review: Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015)

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Coupe with clever extra rear side door. Prices start at £17,995. Available with new DCT dual clutch automatic. Turbo version from mid 2012.

Other coupes are more enjoyable to drive.

Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015): At A Glance

If you thought the Hyundai ranged lacked a bit of sparkle and excitement then the Veloster is the car to change that. It's the first 'sports' car from Hyundai since the Coupe went off sale in 2009. But this is a very different car. For starters it's actually a three-door coupe. And that's not counting the tailgate. It has one door on the driver's side but has two doors on the passenger side, in a similar way to the MINI Clubman.

This makes getting in and out of the back a lot easier and means the Veloster is a viable option even if you have children. It works well and doesn't spoil the looks of the coupe either. And talking of looks this is one coupe that truly stands out. Unlike alternatives like the Vauxhall Astra GTC, the Hyundai isn't based on a standard hatchback, it's very much its own car.

The styling at the back may not be as successful as the front, but there's no denying that the Veloster is a distinctive car and one that stands out from other coupes. The engine line-up is simple with just one 1.6-litre petrol (confusing called a GDi). The standard version has 140PS while there's a turbocharged model with 186PS that feels considerably more sprightly and eager.  The Veloster is also the first car to be available with Hyundai's new DCT double clutch gearbox. Enjoyable to drive and comfortable, the Veloster is a great all-rounder.

Prices start at £17,995 which is good value when you compare it to the competition and consider the list of standard equipment which includes Bluetooth, climate control and parking sensors. But perhaps the real clincher is the five-year/unlimited mileage warranty which comes as standard.

Hyundai Veloster 2012 Road Test and Video

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What does a Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015) cost?

Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015): What's It Like Inside?

Length 4220–4250 mm
Width 1790–1805 mm
Height 1399 mm
Wheelbase 2650 mm

Full specifications

What's really unusual about the Veloster is the three-door design. The driver's side has one standard door, but on the passenger side there's a front and a back door. It may seem like a gimmick but it does actually work. It means that the Veloster still looks like a coupe, especially as the rear door has been designed with a 'hidden' door handle. And it makes getting in the back so much easier, especially as the door open wide. And unlike the MINI Clubman it's on the correct side for us in the UK.

There's a surprising amount of space in the back too. The Veloster may not look that big but it's roomy inside and even six-footers will find decent leg room in the rear. Head room isn't so good due to the low roof and the fact the tailgate glass starts so far forward, so weirdly you sit under the rear windscreen. There's a large boot though and despite a high load lip, it will carry plenty of shopping and even the odd suitcase or two. For a coupe that's only four metres long, the Veloster has a surprising amount of space inside.

Interior quality is impressive as is the design. It looks smart and is well laid out with everything easy to use. The seven-inch touchscreen system that controls the stereo (and sat nav if you opt for it) comes as standard as does Bluetooth, an iPod input and climate control.

The only slight let down is the indicator and wiper column stalks which are a bit dated compared to the rest of the interior. Some of the plastics, such as round the handbrake, could be better too. On the plus side, the driving position is spot on with a low placed seat and plenty of adjustment in the steering, while the seats themselves give plenty of side support.

Standard equipment from launch:

Veloster comes with 17-inch, 5-spoke alloy wheels with 215/45 R17 tyres, body-colour door handles, body-colour bumpers, tinted glass with windscreen header band, front and rear fog lights, LED daytime running lights, remote central locking with deadlocks, electric windows front & rear, electric heated door mirrors, Bluetooth connectivity with voice recognition, automatic headlights, leather-wrapped steering wheel, black cloth upholstery, climate control air-conditioning, RDS radio/CD player, iPod connection, steering wheel mounted audio controls, trip computer, height adjustable driver's seat, 60/40 split folding rear seat backrest, 7-inch touch-screen media centre, twin cup holders front & rear, centre console storage box with armrest, ESP electronic stability programme, front, side and curtain airbags, engine immobiliser and reversing sensors.

Veloster Sport adds 18-inch, 5-spoke alloy wheels with colour inserts and 215/40 R18 tyres, panoramic glass tilt and slide sunroof, black leather upholstery, heated front seats, cruise control, keyless entry with engine start/stop button and sports alloy pedals.

Optional Equipment includes metallic or pearlescent exterior paint, red leather upholstery and front door trim, media Pack (available on Veloster Sport only), satellite navigation system, rear view safety camera, premium eight speaker audio system with external amplifier and subwoofer.

Child seats that fit a Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015)

Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.

Which car seat will suit you?

What's the Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015) like to drive?

Driving the Veloster is an easy and pleasant experience. The ride is fairly firm which fits with the notion that this is a sportier Hyundai. It's a touch bouncy on bumpy roads but is forgiving enough on rough surfaces while the steering is nicely weighted too. Out on the road the Hyundai corners very tidily and fills you with plenty of confidence on more demanding routes.

As is often the case with modern cars, the steering could do wth a little more natural feel, but it's still very responsive and has a suitably sports feel to it. The Veloster is easily the best handling car Hyundai has made to date. Refinement is another big strength with little in the way of unwanted noise, helped by a triple layer sound pad behind the dashboard. The door handles have even been designed to minimise wind noise.

There's one engine in the line-up - the 1.6-litre GDi which, despite the name, is actually a petrol (a bit confusing we know). It's a lightweight all-aluminium engine that develops a healthy 140PS despite the absence of any turbochargers. It's a real revelation in the Veloster and has plenty of get up and go about it despite only a modest 167Nm of torque.

It's at its best when you work it a bit harder, but there's still plenty of eagerness at low revs and round town it's nippy away from a standstill. It's helped by an excellent six-speed manual gearbox with a delightfully positive shift, while at motorway speeds it's quiet enough to make long journeys fairly relaxed affairs. It's also efficient for its size with a claimed average of 43.5mpg although emissions of 148g/km are a touch high.

There is a Blue Drive version which comes with Intelligent Stop & Go (ISG), low rolling-resistance tyres and an alternator management system. This helps improve economy to 47.9mpg and cuts emissions to 137g/km - one tax band lower. Along with the manual gearbox a new dual clutch automatic complete with steering wheel mounted paddle shifts is available. Called DCT it is Hyundai's first ever twin clutch gearbox and costs an extra £1250.

The top version is the 1.6 T-GDi - a turbocharged version with 186PS and more torque - up to 265Nm. It's this increase in pulling power which has the biggest effect on the way the Veloster performs with far better in-gear acceleration and that extra sparkle that's somewhat lacking in the standard version. The Turbo is nippy too with a 0-62mph time of 8.4 seconds while claimed economy is still decent at 40.9mpg.

Engine MPG 0-62 CO2
1.6 GDi 44 mpg 8.4–9.7 s 148 g/km
1.6 GDi Blue Drive 48 mpg 9.7 s 137 g/km
1.6 GDi DCT 44 mpg 10.3 s 145 g/km
1.6 T-GDi Turbo 41 mpg 8.4–9.7 s 157 g/km

Real MPG average for a Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

31–48 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

What have we been asked about the Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015)?

Every day we're asked hundreds of questions from car buyers and owners through Ask Honest John. Our team of experts, including the nation's favourite motoring agony uncle - Honest John himself - answer queries and conudrums ranging from what car to buy to how to care for it as an owner. If you could do with a spot of friendly advice before buying you're next car, get in touch and we'll do what we can to help.

Ask HJ

Could you recommend an easily accessible car with a wide boot opening for my wheelchair?

I'm a new wheelchair and crutch user who loves driving and this is done mostly alone. My 2003 Ford Fiesta 1.4 is great as the boot opening is wide enough to sit on, take the wheels off the chair and place in the shallow boot with the frame following. Also, there is a boot release on the dashboard a fabulous feature when your balance is shot on crutches. I'm planning for a car change and my nightmare is that many cars have shrunken boot openings so it's impossible to sit and comfortably get the chair in the car. I've discounted many vehicles as the boots have too deep a well - great for stressing the back. Three door cars are best for putting my crutches out of the way behind the drivers seat. SUVs are too high. Ideally I need to design my own based on improving the Hyundai Veloster ie large driver door, two door access other side but with boot with minimal access lip and wide opening. Is there a model that I have missed that I should look at that doesn't shout 'disabled'?
I think your best bet is a Honda Jazz because the 'Magic' rear seat squabs flip up, providing space in the centre of the car for crutches, folded wheelchair, etc., as well as class-leading space behind. What's more, the rear seats fold down completely flat and low.
Answered by Honest John
More Questions

What Cars Are Similar To The Hyundai Veloster (2012 – 2015)?

Key attributes of the this model are: Design led, Sporty and Coupe.

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