The first thing we'll note is the attention we get, we still get lots of it. When we took it to Cars and Coffee in Portland, Oregon, everyone had questions. That experience hasn't changed while on the streets. Many people stare at us while we are in traffic, some grabbing a cell phone to snap a shot of the car. We find ourselves at stop lights and the person next to us is giving us the once-over. Even when parking, people will sometimes ask us what kind of car it is. If you are shy, the Veloster might not be for you.
We also want to mention the change in the behavior of the transmission and the engine. The engine definitely seems to rev more freely, and almost seems peppier. The car has some zip off the line, but loses steam as speed increases past 30 mph. The Eco-Shift dual-clutch transmission has also seemed to begin learning our driving style. It lets the engine wind out more and shifts at higher engine speeds, where in the beginning it always went for the top available gear at all times. However the transmissions shifts haven't quickened; we still think they're too long and smoothed-over.
Visibility has been and remains a challenge. While forward visibility isn't bad, rearward visibility is severely hindered by the striking, curvaceous design. The massive C-pillars create a large blind spot while the rear glass is split by a beam. Also, the rear glass is actually curved which distorts things. But, the available backup camera and parking sensors do help a bit.
Our gas mileage has actually improved since the engine has broken in. We originally averaged a mere 30.2 mpg on our first highway road trip. On our latest road trip a few weekends ago, we averaged 35 mpg--a notable improvement by our standards. We also recently took it on our fuel economy loop and tried to eke out every last gallon of gasoline while still being completely safe. We averaged 41.4 mpg on our fuel economy route, which is not only terrific, but also above the EPA highway rating of 38 mpg.
So what's the bottom line? Well after our six-month road test Veloster has racked up some initial miles, our gas mileage has definitely improved and the engine seems to perform better. The overall driving experience is definitely more enjoyable, and the car seems to be adjusting itself to our style.