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2012 Hyundai Veloster Review

While reviewers said it could use more power, the 2012 Hyundai Veloster won points with critics for its upscale cabin and long list of features.

Pros & Cons

  • Upscale cabin
  • Lots of standard features
  • Composed ride
  • Sluggish acceleration




Critics' Rating: 8.2
Performance: 6.7
Interior: 8.3
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.5
Safety: 8.0
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2012 Hyundai Veloster Overview

The 2012 Hyundai Veloster comes standard with a four-cylinder engine and either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed dual-clutch automatic. Test drivers said the Veloster feels pokey and requires a firm push of the gas pedal to accelerate. They said the dual-clutch automatic does a nice job of keeping the engine in its power band. Equipped with the dual-clutch transmission, the 2012 Veloster gets an EPA-estimated 27/35 mpg city/highway, which is good for the class. Some test drivers praised the Veloster’s strong brakes and responsive steering, though others thought the steering is accurate, but lacks road feel. The Veloster won’t thrill you with speed or athleticism, test drivers said, but it offers strong brakes and composure around curves while maintaining a comfortable ride.

Reviewers were highly impressed with the quality of the 2012 Veloster’s cabin, saying that materials and craftsmanship are above and beyond what’s expected for the class. The front seats are comfortable and well-bolstered, they said, and the back seat offers adequate legroom for adults on short trips. Headroom in the back is at a premium thanks to the hatch’s sloping roof, they said, but cargo space is good for a small car. The 2012 Hyundai Veloster comes standard with Bluetooth, an auxiliary input, a USB port, a six-speaker CD audio system with a 7-inch touch screen, satellite radio, steering wheel-mounted audio controls and Hyundai’s Blue Link telematics system. Available features include a panoramic sunroof, rear parking sensors, a premium audio system, navigation, a rearview camera, push-button start and proximity key. Auto writers agreed the Veloster has a lot of features for the class and said that the dashboard controls are generally easy to reach and use.

Other Cars to Consider

The Ford Focus was completely redesigned for 2012 and test drivers said it offers superb handling and a manual transmission that’s fun to shift. The Focus also gets good fuel economy for the class, and critics appreciated its high-quality interior.

The base 2012 Honda Civic gets superb fuel economy ratings, and test drivers praised its comfortable ride and sharp steering. The Civic also comes in a more powerful Si trim, which reviewers said is satisfyingly quick off the line. 

Compare the Veloster, Focus and Civic »


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