Throughout its life, Hyundai’s Veloster has primarily traded on its funkiness. But for 2019, the Korean automaker hopes to imbue the unusual hatchback’s willfully odd personality with newfound refinement and tech. After taking a year-long sabbatical, the 2019 Veloster is back, and it’s wearing a fresh new look at the Detroit Auto Show.
You may remember that the original Veloster made its debut in Detroit way back in 2011. At the time, it was a novel take on the affordable hatchback formula. Its asymmetrical door layout made it easy for rear seat passengers to hop in and out while still keeping the lines of the car sporty — even if the driving experience ultimately wasn’t.
The 2019 Hyundai Veloster looks, both in pictures and on paper, like a much more desirable car. It’s still recognizably a Veloster with its three doors and chunky back end, but Hyundai’s designers have been hard at work, smoothing out its rough spots all over. Gone is the original car’s weird fish-face grille and in its place is a sleek version of Hyundai’s corporate cascade grille. The back end is a little less busy and looks a lot more grown up thanks to a set of horizontal tail lights.
The Veloster appears to sit lower and has a more muscular, coupe-like profile. The Veloster Turbo still has twin center exhaust tips, but they look tamer. This time out they’re closer to the size of an orange than a grapefruit.
The Veloster’s interior has always been a pleasant (if not overly luxurious) place to spend time, but Hyundai has worked to make the new car’s cockpit feel more upmarket and unique. The colored accents dotting the cabin change according to trim level and help the cabin feel like a much more unique place to be than the outgoing car.