The Hyundai Veloster N, a favorite around these parts, will start the new model year at $32,250, up $4,650 over the 2020 MSRP of $27,600. It might seem a steep hit, but the 2021 car has effectively graduated to another class.
That’s because it’ll now come with the Performance Package as standard equipment. This means all Veloster Ns will pack 275 horsepower. Previously, the standard power was 250, with the optional Performance Package adding the extra 25 hp. Also new is an eight-speed dual clutch transmission. That new trans is a $1,500 option, though, meaning a Veloster N equipped with the dual-clutch gearbox now costs $34,745 (including the $995 shipping charge).
Much of the price hike is the result of added features for ’21. The Veloster N now comes standard with a whole suite of driving aids:
- Automatic emergency braking
- Forward-collision avoidance
- Lane-follow assist
- Lane-keeping assist
- Driver-attention warning
- Blind-spot collision avoidance assist (much needed, as the Veloster has big blind spots)
- Rear cross-traffic alert
Inside the ’21 Veloster N gets new performance seats that look fantastic with big bolsters and a larger standard eight-inch touchscreen.
The price increase puts the Veloster N in pricing territory occupied by vehicles like the WRX, GTI, Civic Si and Civic Type R; if you’re shopping used, you can include the dearly departed Focus ST and RS and Golf R. But the Veloster N has more horsepower or is cheaper than every single competitor.
The Subaru WRX starts $4,755 cheaper (MSRP $27,495) but makes 268 horses. And to step up to the 310 HP WRX STi you’d have to spend $9,500 more.
The VW GTI starts $3,655 cheaper (MSRP $28,595) but makes only 228 HP. You could go used for the Golf R, but 2017-19 models can go for as much as a new Veloster N.
The Honda Civic Type R makes more power at 306, but it starts $5,245 (MSRP $37,495) more than the Veloster N. And while the Civic Si is more sensible with its $25,200 MSRP, it makes only 205 HP.
The Ford Focus RS made 350 HP, but its used prices are sometimes as much as the Veloster N is new. And depending how low the miles are, can cost as much as its original MSRP was when it was new. The ST can be had for cheap now, but it’ll be older and makes just 252 HP.
All that to say it looks like the Veloster will retain its spot as the best value in the sport-compact segment, even with the price bump.