We Autoblog staffers have had our ups and downs with our long-term 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo, but there's no question that the cheeky three-door hatchback has got its proponents. Case in point: at the recent driving event for the fire-breathing SRT Viper TA, none other than Ralph Gilles sauntered over to have a closer look at the matte grey Veloster we'd driven out to the track that day. Gilles had lots of praise for the Veloster styling; not out of line with similar sentiments we've heard all year long.
We digress slightly, but the larger point is that there still seems to be a lot of interest in the Veloster, and Hyundai has plans to fully explore potential new marketplace niches for the car with this all-new, 2014 Veloster Turbo R-Spec.
Following on with the formula for R-Spec models to date, the new Veloster is not a higher-performance Turbo, but rather one that is more affordable. The theory goes that a de-contented Veloster Turbo hits the sweet spot for those who are interested in tuning the car for performance, a group that will probably not need the higher spec comfort and connectivity content that the standard Turbo ships with.
In addition to getting the turbocharged 1.6-liter engine (output unchanged at 201 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque), the Turbo R-Spec gets a host of racy visual updates. The red accents on the sides and front splitter of the car (seen here) are optional extras, while an exclusive interior treatment and R-Spec badges are part of the standard package. The car will be available with four paint options: Marathon Blue, Sprint Gray (exclusive to the R-Spec), Elite White and Ultra Black.
Functional upgrades include a B&M Racing sport shifter (which we're excited to try out), higher front and rear spring rates, a stiffer transmission mount and revised steering tuning for a heavier feel.
Equipment has been deleted from the standard Turbo specification, too, to both lower cost and reduce weight for the R-Spec. Deletions include the push-button start and proximity key, leather and heated seats, the electroluminescent instrument cluster, side mirror turn signals, driver's auto-up window and the glossy black interior accent pieces.
We're still waiting for official pricing for the Veloster Turbo R-Spec, but a small amount of extrapolation from the Genesis Coupe to Genesis Coupe R-Spec would indicate a starting price in the neighborhood of $20,000.