In a bid to make the Veloster N more accessible, Hyundai is giving it a new transmission and interior upgrades. Let’s look at what’s in store for the Veloster N in 2021.
The insistence by Honda, Volkswagen, and Hyundai to still offer manual transmissions in their hatchbacks is a signal that the preferences of automotive purists haven’t been completely forgotten. And yet … as engaging as the manuals are in these cars, they aren’t for everyone. It was a gutsy call for Hyundai to initially offer the Veloster N as a manual only, but the time has come to lower the bar for entry. And thus, the Hyundai Veloster N will be graced with an 8-speed wet dual-clutch automatic transmission in the new 2021 model.
What? Sacrilege you say? First, I’d offer that the Veloster will retain the option of a 6-speed manual for all you hardcores and OGs out there. But second, I’d say put down your pitch folks and torches and allow us a moment to explore all the updates coming to the Veloster N in 2021, including that nifty new transmission.
The big news for the Veloster N is that 8-speed DCT. Don’t worry, the 6-speed manual is still available, but in an effort to democratize the hot hatch, and thereby sell more cars, Hyundai has the DCT for the unwashed masses. Ye plebeians can rejoice because the DCT actually makes the Veloster better, or at least “better”.
That’s in part because it can shift faster than you can. The 8-speed will reportedly deliver a 0-60 time of 5.6 seconds, which is .2 seconds faster than the manual 6-speed transmission (rumor is, both of these times are actually a hair faster in real life). The DCT is a wet dual-clutch, with extra lubrication and cooling for all that high-end torque you’ll be passing through it. It’s like Hyundai is telling you to drive it hard.
And there’s more. With the DCT you’ll gain access to some nifty “N” modes. Whenever the driver is pressing the throttle at 90 percent or more, the N Power Shift engages to combat torque reduction between upshifts. This comes along with some satisfying exhaust crackles whenever you let off the throttle.
Another N mode is the N Grind Shift which ups the torque output by 7 percent for up to 20 seconds, jumping output from 260lb.-ft. to 278lb.-ft with the help of some turbocharger overboost. The Veloster’s N Track Sense detects road conditions and automatically adjusts to the correct gear for the terrain, as well as sticking to lower gears around turns for more aggressive acceleration out of corners. Hyundai notes that you can further modify transmission response with their new “Custom” settings.
The DCT isn’t the only thing new due for the 2021 Veloster N. There are also some great new sports seats. Given the Civic Type-R has some of the very best seats you’ll find in any car under the $100,000, it’s probably good Hyundai has decided to up their seat game. The new N sports seats even come with an illuminated “N” logo for added style points.
The Veloster N equipped with the DCT will also feature paddle shifters and launch control, so the fun factor remains, even without a third pedal. Plus, the Performance Package now comes standard which adds an electronically controlled limited slip front differential, bigger brakes, 19-inch wheels, and upgraded horsepower that tops out at 275hp.
An 8-inch touchscreen and navigation will also come standard along with a bevy of driver assist features including blind spot monitoring and collision avoidance, rear cross traffic alert and collision warning, lane keep assist, lane follow assist, and driver attention warning.
The new seats and DCT are nice and all, but the one thing that the Veloster has going for it that other hot hatches like the Civic Type-R and the Golf GTI don’t is the number of doors. Two doors? Four doors? Far too symmetrical, says Hyundai. The Veloster still, and resolutely, retains a three-door configuration. In the world of hatchbacks, the third door is like the sprinkling of parsley atop your chicken parmesan or the Dude’s rug in his bungalow living room, they really tie they whole thing together.
A big part of the Veloster’s charm is its distinctiveness even within the already “distinctive” class of hot hatches. While not quite as fast as the Civic Type R or as audaciously styled (which for many may be a good thing) it is also, and this is pretty important, not as expensive. The Type-R comes in at $37,950 and the Golf GTI at about $32,195. Though Hyundai has yet to make the numbers official on the 2021, the current Veloster Turbo Ultimate rings up at $28,450, and so we’d guess the Veloster N will end up closer to the GTI’s price point than the Type-R’s.
The 2021 Hyundai Veloster N is schedule to appear at dealerships this October.