Hyundai Veloster

The Essentials

  • Price from £18,000
  • What Car? says: 2 star rating
  • Fuel economy: up to 43.5mpg
  • What is it? Competitively priced and well equipped coupé

Great

  • The Veloster is a distinctive coupé that's cheaper than most of its rivals
  • The single rear door improves access for passengers in the back
  • Even basic cars are well equipped

Gripes

  • The ride is harsh and the steering feels remote, and it's noisy too
  • There isn't enough room in the back
  • You need to work the engine hard to get up to speed
  • Drive

    A bumpy ride, slack steering and a lacklustre engine disappoint

  • Inside

    Feels decent-enough quality but nothing special

  • Safety

    Good rosta of safety measures and top crash test result

  • Reliability

    So-so record for Hyundai but five-year warranty helps

  • Space

    Not roomy enough, even for a coupé  and it's particularly cramped in the back

  • Standard and extras

    Even entry-level cars have a good level of kit

  • What's it like to drive?

    There are two petrol engines available, both 1.6-litre units, and no diesels. The 138bhp version needs too much revving to get the best from it. The 184bhp version is strong and brisk but you'll need to rev that too and this makes both engines noisy; a fair amount of wind and road noise enters the cabin at speed as well.

    The Veloster's steering feels slightly unconnected to the car so, although the car is actually quite responsive, you don't feel you're in enough control to do anything very exciting and the car runs out of grip when pushed. The ride is firm and uncomfortable, particularly in the higher-powered car.

  • What's it like inside?

    The cabin materials are mostly hard but feel decent quality. There's a good range of seat and steering wheel adjustment, but steer clear of Sport trim if you or your other half are over 5ft 10ins because its panoramic glass roof eats into front headroom.

    A hidden rear door on the nearside of the car makes it much easier for rear passengers to get in the back than in other coupés. However, anyone over 5ft 6ins will struggle for headroom here due to the sloping rear screen. The boot is a decent size but you may find it tricky lift heavy items over the large load lip.

    A seven-inch touch-screen provides the infotainment hub on all Velosters but the menus on it aren't especially clear. However, even in the entry-level model you also get alloys, climate control, rear parking sensors and Bluetooth. Sport brings larger alloys (and a firmer ride) and cruise control plus the glass roof. The range-topping Turbo SE gets most features (except the glass roof) as standard.

  • How reliable is it?

    The cabin feels pretty robust and you get a five-year unlimited-mileage warranty with every Hyundai, although the manufacturer's reliability record is no better than average. Safety provision is reassuring: even the cheapest Veloster comes with six airbags and active front head restraints, and the car received a maximum five-star Euro NCAP crash test rating. Stability control, deadlocks and an alarm are standard too.

  • Should I buy one?

    The Veloster is cheaper than its closest rival, the Vauxhall Astra GTC, but Vauxhall offer bigger discounts. The Hyundai's resale values should be reasonably strong but you'll struggle to get anywhere near the entry-level car's official economy of 42.5mpg because you'll need to work it so hard. The Turbo's official figure is 40.9mpg and it's also more expensive to buy than its main rival, the VW Scirocco.