By on April 14, 2020

Very few quirky cars remain in today’s homogeneous vehicle landscape, but the Hyundai Veloster can count itself among that offbeat cohort. The Veloster N cranks up the fun quotient considerably, adding 250 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque to the oddball three-door package. More power can be drawn from the turbo 2.0-liter via a performance package.

A recent entry to the Hyundai lineup, the Veloster N has thus far been available only with a six-speed manual. No problem there, this writer says, but Hyundai clearly felt otherwise.

Via an Instagram post, Hyundai indicated Monday that drivers with no use for a third pedal will soon be able to add the Veloster N to their shopping list. The video contained within the post clearly shows a dual-clutch automatic shifter embossed with “N” logo as the driver tosses the hatch around with vigor.

“Shift the moment,” indeed.

The automaker states that this gearbox will be an eight-speed unit.

DCTs see considerable use in Hyundai’s turbocharged offerings, offering quicker shifts compared to a manual or conventional automatic. With DCTs, like (but to a lesser degree) CVTs, paddle shifting isn’t a pointless and annoying endeavor, and the Veloster N can be seen in the video sporting a pair of flappy paddles.

The availability of an automatic significantly broadens the appeal of a budget performance model to a consumer base that’s rapidly aging away from manuals. The young crowd is likely to have never driven in a vehicle with a stick shift, let alone owned one. Manual take rate in the industry is plunging towards 1 percent.

Given the timing of the video, it seems safe to assume the DCT-equipped Veloster N will be ready for the 2021 model year. With Veloster volume rising 18.2 percent in the second-generation model’s first full year on the market, the inclusion of an automatic N definitely won’t hurt sales performance.

[Image: Hyundai]

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22 Comments on “Hyundai’s Scrappiest Car to Receive… an Automatic...”

  • avatar

    So, a Focus with a transmission that works.

  • avatar

    Dirty, automatic-preferring scum rejoice!
    Hopefully it’s available on the higher-output version too.

  • avatar

    Hell ajla

    An automatic transmission is a welcome choice.
    I can no longer enjoy driving a manual due to injuries I sustained to my knee and elbow during my military service and career as a firefighter. I’m thankful I’m blessed to still enjoy the life I have.

    Dirty scum indeed!

    It’s far past time to stop your hatred of automotive enthusiasts that require or prefer an automatic.

    • 0 avatar

      You misunderstand. I *am* dirty, automatic-driving scum. I don’t even have have any excuse for it (physical ailments, bad traffic, wife, etc.), I just like them more.

      There are a few commenters on here that are very anti-automatic so I like to use that turn of phrase as a joke.

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t loathe automatics if there is a manual transmission option. I can assure you that if there is only an automatic available, I won’t be buying it unless it is a hybrid and unless I can’t shift for myself anymore.

    • 0 avatar

      Hey, wounded warrior. People used to fight for a personal glory, not to come back and complain, “I need an automatic”. Get on a horse and go to Valhalla. You sound totally unreasonable. If you worry about fellow handicaps, you guys can easy get in and out of SUVs. With your injuries, soon you will find it hard to get in and out of low sports car. Take it easy, don’t hurt yourself even more.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      Oh stop. Nobody hates you guys, it’s just that your aren’t exactly limited with respect to choice like those of us that prefer to row our own.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I don’t miss manuals one bit, having had one for 28 years of my 40 years of driving.

    As for the Veloster, it’s the one Hyundai I can do without – too small, too impractical, and weird looks. YMMV.

  • avatar

    Automatic… heresy.

  • avatar

    I just took delivery of my new Veloster N with the Performance Package last week. The car is an absolute hoot to drive. And the manual shifts very smoothly and is highly engaging. IMO, way better than the 6-speed in my outgoing ’15 Accord Sport.

    I personally wouldn’t buy this car with an auto, faster shifts or not. A manual just suits its character perfectly. But that said, I have no problem with the move. If it increases the appeal so the car sells better and we get more N models here as a result, that’s a great thing.

    The majority of GTIs are sold with the DSG. Manuals seem to be about 1 in 3 by my informal observations when I was considering that car as well. So by that measure, sales of the Veloster N should increase considerably.

    • 0 avatar

      My 2011 Mazda3 also shifts better than 2015 Accord. But how ‘N shifts vs GTI and Jetta?

      • 0 avatar

        Compared to my old 2011 GTI, more firm and direct. Compared to the UUC short shifter on my current E36 M3, smoother and less notchy.

        I’ve not driven a MK VII GTI with a manual. I drove a MK VII GTD in Europe with the DSG and it was a very good transmission. I’ll be curious to see how the VW DSG compares to the Veloster N’s new transmission.

        • 0 avatar

          I wonder if the issue is VW gets loose with age. At least, while ago, I saw this with my own eyes – stick shifts that are shaking while you drive :-) Basically, many reviewers say that this is wasted effort to have MT in 2014-17 Accord because it is not particularly good. I drove it. I found, the shifter is badly placed. Mazda6 is so much better. But I see that 2011 Mazda gearbox is better. At the recent show, I tried Kia, VW gear boxes. Well.. My hope, the one in your car is not the same as in Forte GT :-)

          • 0 avatar

            I sold my GTI for the Accord when it had 50k on it (not a great decision in retrospect). So it didn’t get loose during my ownership.

            I’ve also read criticism of the Accord’s MT (my generation and the current one too). The shifter is suited to the car’s purpose. It’s light and precise which makes it good to use in traffic. But it is not performance feeling, though I didn’t hold it to that standard because it’s a commuter car. I will also say that I don’t think the transmission is ideally geared for the motor, but that’s not the fault of the shifter. Hondas have good shifters, which is why I mentioned it.

            I’ve never driven the Forte GT. I can tell you the Veloster N’s shifter is very good. Firm, short and precise. Reminds me more than a little of the one in my old Acura RSX Type-S. Sitting in a car at a show gives a general feel what the shifter is like but you don’t get the full dynamic of how it works with the rest of the drivetrain. I believe the Veloster N is overall excellent in that regard. Not disappointed.

            Just my opinion, and I feel I’m qualified enough given the several manual cars I’ve owned, being a loyal manual transmission consumer who apparently doesn’t exist anymore :-)

  • avatar

    Looking forward to a comparo between this and a DSG GTI. (My money’s on the GTI, but props to Hyundai for making a real effort.)

  • avatar

    Transmission is so 20th century ancient. Kids today have no idea what transmission is. Cellphone has only three buttons: On/Off, Volume Up and Volume down. Are volume up/down buttons transmission?

  • avatar

    The 8 spd DCT is getting positive reviews in models like the new Sorento, so while not exactly performance-oriented, at the very least shows some promise.

  • avatar

    I honestly hope this is an awesome transmission because it’s the only one that the Sonata N-line is going to come with.

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