What is it?
The range-topping model in the Hyundai Veloster Coupe range, in higher spec sports trim and equipped with Hyundai’s own-engineered six-speed dual-clutch transmission as a £1250 option.
Sports trim means 18-inch wheels shod with 215/40 R18 rubber instead of standard 215/45 R17, but identical spring and damper settings to the standard car.
To compensates for the different tyre sizes, the DCT transmission also features a longer final drive ratio — 3.667:1 in 5th and 6th gears and a shorter ratio of 4.813;1 in 1st 2nd, 3rd and 4th gears. The manual-equipped Veloster uses a 4.267 final drive. The DCT does bring a hefty weight penalty adding 35kg to the kerb weight.
The Veloster, incidentally, is based on the impressive new i30 hatch platform, but strangely the coupe makes do with a simple twist-beam rear-axle where the hatch enjoys a multi-link.
What’s it like?
The DCT transmission adds an extra string to the Veloster’s bow – making it into a city/commuting-friendly easy-to-drive coupe. The DCT will spread across other models in the range.
It changes gear smoothly with a slight slurring of the up and down changes, which are made to feel a little snappier when the steering-wheel mounted paddles — right-hand side for up a gear, left-hand side for down — are used in back-road driving.
Compared to the standard six-speed manual, though, the DCT-equipped Veloster feels a little more sluggish during press-on driving. The acceleration figures back this up. Unusually for a DCT, the self-shifter is slower to 60mph than the manual, in this case by 0.6sec.
Fuel economy is quoted as better with the DCT – 44.1mpg versus 43.5mpg – as is the CO2 145g/km versus 148. Although on our test drive — not particularly scientifically-observed it must be admitted — the trip meters of the two cars I tried told a different story – 28mpg for DCT versus 29.8mpg for the manual.
The sports trim is a well-appointed luxury spec option, adding heated leather seats, panoramic tilt/slide roof, cruise control and stop-start, rear-view camera and 18-inch wheels for £2500 more on the list price. Touch screen sat-nav is a further £1100 option.