• Apr 20, 2012
The Hyundai Veloster has been a bit polarizing since it went on sale last year. And the debate could get more animated if the Korean company does what we think it's thinking about doing.

At a recent gathering of reporters and Hyundai executives in Ann Arbor, MI, where the annual Rolling Sculpture Car Show takes place every summer, we asked Hyundai Motors America chief John Krafcik what he planned to bring this year (the college town is also home to Hyundai America Technical Center). Last year, they showed off the new Veloster.

Redone Azera? New Santa Fe? Neither seems appropriate for the tone of the event. So, we threw this out: "How about chopping the top off the Veloster and see the reaction?"

Krafcik and PR man Jim Trainor started trying to make poker faces, indicating to us that we may well have stumbled on to a future project, Rolling Sculpture or no. But we aren't sure.

Some thought the Veloster was an answer to a question that nobody had been asking, but the unique coupe is proving to be a great sales and image success for Hyundai. Krafcik has shown a great instinct for design and engineering the Hyundai lineup to successful heights: redesigns of the Sonata, Elantra, Accent and now Santa Fe. He also had a lot to do with the cleanup of the Azera, and, of course, the Genesis and Genesis Coupe. A former product development executive at Ford, it's hard to think he would not be the current product development chief in Dearborn had he stayed, and not been scooped up by Hyundai a decade ago.

Hyundai's sales have been supply constrained on many of its models, including the Veloster. Given a finite supply of Veloster models that it can source from Korea, Krafcik plans to emphasize production of the upcoming Turbo model. That strikes us as a smart move.

We're excited about the turbo, but we couldn't resist asking a rendering artist to imagine the Veloster sans roof. What do you think? Is topless a good thing in this case?



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 58 Comments
      suthrn2nr
      • 2 Years Ago
      This comparison sums ups the pros and cons of each car pretty well: http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/coupes/1202_mini_cooper_vs_scion_tc_vs_honda_crz_vs_volkswagen_beetle_vs_hyundai_veloster_vs_fiat_500_comparison/viewall.html
      Charles Adrian Happy
      • 2 Years Ago
      I think this looks better than the coupe (at least with the top down). with the top up, it may be a whole different story, By the way the the coupe stills needs a door on the drivers side , Didn't Hyundai learn anything from the Saturn disaster
      Joe
      • 2 Years Ago
      I think the Veloster is an interesting cAr, if my dad were to hypothetically take me to get a new car for under $25,000 it would be either this or a CRZ Manual, fun unique little cars who's limits could be easily exploited if I felt like it. I think the convertible is a good idea on the Velosters part, its definitely different.
      wongtpa
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hyundai = junk ! Buy American!
        Paul
        • 2 Years Ago
        @wongtpa
        "Your the idiot" Your? Really? IT'S "YOU'RE" And a Hyundai is far better than anything that Americans can build.
        zedaudio
        • 2 Years Ago
        @wongtpa
        You idiot
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      IBx27
      • 2 Years Ago
      Christ, as if the original lumpback wasn't ugly enough...Now it's a tub that got its face caught in a fence.
      Alex Rodriguez MacFa
      • 2 Years Ago
      Is it me or do all small convertibles look feminine??
        Shiftright
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Alex Rodriguez MacFa
        Dunno, send us a pic of yourself and I'll tell you if you look feminine.
          MotionDesigner
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Shiftright
          Simply downvoting the original comment would've sufficed. No retort was needed. Now you look worse than him.
      Moreno636
      • 2 Years Ago
      I kinda like it...it would have a tonne of character.
      the.ting
      • 2 Years Ago
      Just about anything can improve the looks of this thing. The concept shown back in 2008 promised much. The execution is a let-down.
        the.ting
        • 2 Years Ago
        @the.ting
        Aw, looks like I twisted a few undies.
          IBx27
          • 2 Years Ago
          @the.ting
          Get used to it here, I get reported as abuse whenever I say hyundai isn't godlike.
      Nick Allain
      • 2 Years Ago
      Reminds me a bit of the old Golf Cabrio - some funk and spunk. I think I like it.
      Bryan Martinez
      • 2 Years Ago
      This looks great. I don't even like convertible cars.
      drewpy
      • 2 Years Ago
      No
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