2007 Hyundai Veloster ConceptEnlarge Photo
Looks like Hyundai is back on to resuscitate the old Scoupe in spirit (if not in name). Or maybe they're going to breathe a bit more bite into the Tiburon. Regardless of lineage, we know the folks at Hyundai are cooking up a little 2+2, front-wheel drive coupe that many thought had been put on hold due to development of the 2010 Genesis Coupe.
In 2007 we first saw this Veloster concept at the Frankfurt Auto Show and were taken by its chunky, aggressive stance and cool details. A closer look yields strong resemblance to corporate sibling Kia's Soul crossover from the front, and I find the rear to be a charming mix of Volvo C30 and the far-out funk of the old AMC Gremlin. The Kammback lives! (Albeit with a rear quarter blind spot the size of a small country.)
Hyundai Veloster ConceptEnlarge Photo
The name is perhaps even better than the style. Veloster strikes us as a cool mashup of "Velocity" and "Roadster." Simple, clever, elegant. In a world of bland (Freestar) and downright obscene (Probe) automotive nomenclature, it's nice to see the wordsmiths work as hard as the styling departments for a change.
It seems a tough time to launch sporty coupes, but Hyundai has efficiency down pat and perhaps a couple of spry coupes with great personalities and refreshing style are just what a weary market and penny-pinched consumers want. It should also move Hyundai's image ever further away from its humble, humdrum econocar roots. Hyundai is ready to launch its impressive Genesis Coupe, and sources within the company are saying that a baby brother possibly named Veloster has been greenlighted as a 2011 or 2012 model.